Applications for the fourth Self Employment Income Support Scheme (SEISS) grant, intended to support self-employed individuals affected by COVID-19, will open on a staged basis from late April to 1 June 2021.
The fourth grant will be based on 80% of three months’ average trading profit, paid out in a single taxable instalment capped at £7,500 in total, which will cover the period February 2021 to April 2021.
The rules on who is eligible to claim are different to those for the previous SEISS grants.
The scheme has been extended to those who have filed a 2019/20 Self-Assessment tax return prior to 3 March 2021. This means that the newly self-employed individuals (between 6 April 2019 and 5 April 2020) may now qualify, subject to satisfying the other eligibility conditions.
Who is eligible for the fourth SEISS grant?
To be eligible for the fourth SEISS grant, you must:
- Be self-employed or a member of a partnership – you cannot claim the grant if you trade through a limited company or a trust
- Have traded in both the tax years 2019-2020 and 2020-2021
- Have submitted your 2019-20 tax return on or before 2 March 2021
- Have trading profits that are no more than £50,000 and at least equal to non-trading income, based on your 2019-20 tax return or an average of relevant tax years between 2016-17 and 2019-20
- Be currently trading but are impacted by reduced activity, capacity or demand due to coronavirus, or have traded previously but are temporarily unable to do so due to coronavirus
- Declare that you intend to continue to trade, or restart trading, and that you reasonably believe that the impact on your business will cause a significant reduction in your trading profits
Getting ready to claim
The claim portal will be open to applications in stages, which will run between late April and 1 June, with the portal opening on different days for different taxpayers.
From mid-April, HMRC will contact taxpayers by email, SMS or letter where they believe taxpayers may be eligible for the fourth grant. If you are contacted by HMRC you will receive a personal claim date. This is a specific date when you can make the claim, intended to ensure the claim portal remains fast and easy for everyone to use. You should not make a claim before your personal claim date, because it may then not be processed by HMRC.
To make the claim you will need the following information:
- Self Assessment Unique Taxpayer Reference (UTR) number
- National Insurance Number
- Government Gateway user ID and password
- Account number and sort code for the bank account you want the grant paid into
IF YOU HAVEN’T MADE A CLAIM BEFORE
If you are newly self-employed and don’t have a Government Gateway account, you will need to create one in advance. You can register for an account here.
If this is your first time claiming a SEISS grant you may be asked additional questions to prove your identity.
You may be asked questions on any of the following, and should have the relevant information to hand:
- UK passport
- Information held on your credit file (such as loans, credit cards or mortgages)
- Self-Assessment tax return (within the last three years)
- Your tax credit claim
- One of your three most recent payslips
HMRC communication with taxpayers
In April HMRC will also be contacting taxpayers for the following reasons:
WHERE FURTHER ELIGIBILITY CHECKS ARE REQUIRED AFTER PROCESSING 2019/20 SELF-ASSESSMENT RETURNS
If you need to undergo a further eligibility check you will be contacted via the telephone number on your tax return.
You will be asked for:
- Proof of identity (such as a valid UK passport or UK photo-card driving license)
- Evidence of trade (three months of bank statements from the business accounts for the 2019-20 tax year)
WHERE TAXPAYERS HAVE PREVIOUSLY CLAIMED FOR THE SEISS GRANT BUT ARE NOT ELIGIBLE FOR THE FOURTH
This will be because either:
- Your 2019-20 Self-Assessment return was not filed on or before 2 March 2021, or
- You do not meet the eligibility criteria when your filed 2019-20 return is taken into account
If you have any further queries or need any further information on the fourth SEISS grant, please get in touch.