“Am I eligible for the self employment grant and how can I apply?”

This is one of the most asked questions we are receiving from our landlord community and we understand that this area is causing frustration due to the many exclusions.

The aim of the grant is to pay self-employed people a taxable grant based on their previous earnings over the last three years, worth up to 80% of earnings, and capped at £2,500 a month.

The Government believed that 95% of the five million self-employed people in the UK, would qualify, but of course, it is never that simple.

Are you eligible?

  • You must have submitted a tax return for 2018/19 (if you missed the January deadline you now have 4 weeks to get it in)
  • You have self employed trading profits of up to £50,000
  • The majority (at least half) of your income must come through self employment. (You’re allowed other income, but it must be 49% or less of your total income)

What you’ll need to prove?

  • That your business has been adversely affected by coronavirus
  • You have lost trading profits due to coronavirus
  • You intend to continue to trade in the tax year 2020 to 2021
  • You are trading when you apply, or would be except for coronavirus

Remember the grants will be taxable and will need to be declared on tax returns by January 2022.

Further questions you are asking:-

I’ve recently become self employed, am I eligible?

The scheme does not cover people who only became self-employed very recently (do not have self employment income for the tax year 2018/19) you will have to look to the benefits system for support.

How do I claim the help?

Whilst it is frustrating to wait and do nothing, the scheme will work by HMRC using existing information to identify those who are eligible and will invite them to apply, ensuring they meet the eligibility requirements. Once approved, the money will be paid directly into your bank account as provided on the application form. Please be aware that some people may try to impersonate HMRC to obtain your personal details.

When will I receive my grant?

HMRC will aim to contact you by mid May 2020 and will make payments by early June 2020.

How long can I access the Coronavirus Self-Employment Income Support scheme?

Initially, this support will be available for three months, but will be reviewed and extended if necessary.

Can I still work whilst receiving the Coronavirus Self-Employment Income Support scheme?

Unlike the employee scheme, the self-employed can continue to work or take on other employment including voluntary work even if they receive the support.

How do I apply for Universal Credit?

Click here to apply.  You’ll get your first payment around 5 weeks after applying online if your application is successful. When you apply, you can ask for an advance if you need help sooner.

Are there any consequences for this grant?

The grant will be taxable and must be declared in your 2020/2021 tax return. The Chancellor also said, “it is now much harder to justify the inconsistent contributions between people of different employment if we all want to access equal support we must all be paying equally in future.”

I’m a director of a limited company, can I access this scheme?

If you pay yourself a salary and dividends through your own company, you are not covered by the scheme but may be covered for your salary by the Coronavirus Job Retention Scheme if you are operating through PAYE and are not a sole director. You also have other support open to you such as loans or grants. See our business flow chart for more details.

What other support is there?

Below are the flow charts we have generated to help guide you through the multiple sources of support that is available to you.


We also have a handy template for informing your employees of the AGREED changes in their employment status to “furloughing” [TEMPLATE furlough-leave-agreement]

You click here to watch Chris Bailey, LT4L’s Co-owner & CEO of The Bailey Group do a Q&A video where he answers some of your most asked Covid-19 questions from last week.

This blog is for educational purposes only, to give you general information and a general understanding of the Government Self Employment Grant and not to provide or substitute specific accountancy advice.  Please continue to check the Government Website for updates.