Rolling updates of the financial measures announced by the government to help the self employed survive in these turbulent times

To help you understand all of the tax and financial measures announced by the government, we have created this Rolling COVID-19 Tracker which we will update daily as new measures and clarity on exiting measures are announced.

This page looks at the measures that have been announced that might relate to you if you are self employed. We have assumed that if you are self- employed with profits under £50k that you are not VAT registered and probably don’t pay rates on a rented properly.  If you do, you will find these measures on our main COVID-19 tracker 

If you are in financial distress due to COVID-19 you can call the new HMRC COVID-19 helpline – Tel: 0800 024 1222 

Bookmark this page and check back regularly.

Interest Rates

On 19 March 2020 the Bank of England cut interest rates to a historic low of 0.1%, having previously reduced them to 0.25% on the day of the Spring Budget. 

Mortgage Holidays

All UK mortgage holders can apply for a 3 month mortgage holiday IF they are adversely affected by COVID-19.

Call your mortgage provider and ask for the holiday if you believe you are going to be adversely impacted.

Many lenders have texted their customers and asked that they don't call them, but apply online.

After the 3 month payment holiday, you will see a small uplift in your monthly repayment as the unpaid repayment is added to the remaining balance of your loan. 



Time To Pay Arrangements

Generous time to pay arrangements on current tax arrears

Do call HMRC, but expect to sit on hold, they have a huge rise in calls and a lot off staff off or self isolating. Be patient!

Income Tax - Deferred

A simple way of getting cash to the self-employed, is to defer taxes. 

Rather than give money, HMRC have taken less money... for now.

Self-assessment income tax payments for the self-employed which were due on 31 July 2020 can now be deferred until 31 January 2021.

Deferral is automatic, you don't need to ask to defer.

If you have put that money aside, you can now use it to fund living expenses instead.

If you haven't put cash aside, it does at least give you more time to fund your 2021 bill.

Ringfence the money into a separate bank account and only spend it if you absolutely have to.

Access to Welfare For Low Income Individuals

The minimum income floor for access to universal credit has been suspended for low income individuals affected by the economic impact of coronavirus.

This support is available if needed for the lowest-income individuals and families affected by COVID-19, regardless of employment status.

Self-employed Income Support Scheme (SEISS)

Announced 26 March 2020

  • Those who are already self-employed and facing financial difficulties are asked to apply.
  • The scheme will cover up to 80% of average profits over the past three years, up to £2,500 per month, for at least three months.
  • Those with trading profits of more than £50,000 are not eligible.
  • Eligibility is determined with reference to earnings in 2018/19 as reported on tax returns filed this year.
  • What next? Application will be to HMRC via an online platform, yet to launch. The grants probably won’t be available until June 2020, backdated to 1 March. In the meantime, self-employed people who can’t work are expected to claim universal credit, access to which was broadened in the Spring Budget.
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