Government Covid Support

This crisis has impacted businesses in all industries all over the world, and needs

strong assistance. The Government has announced new package designed to minimize the impact on UK businesses. The Government has also created a business support tool to help you discover the support available to you and your business. 


Jobs Support Scheme

The new Jobs Support Scheme (JSS) is a scheme designed to provide support to businesses that are looking to retain employees but are facing reduced demand or have been forced to close due to coronavirus restrictions. It's been expanded to incorporate two schemes - JSS Open and JSS Closed.

JSS Open:

JSS Open covers those businesses that are able to operate safely but are currently facing a reduction in demand. Each employee needs to work at least 20% of their normal hours, and the employer must continue to pay them for those hours as per usual. 

Also the employee will get 66.67% of their usual pay for the hours not worked, made up of a combination of payments from the Government and the employer. The Government will pay 61.67% of the employee's salary for those not worked (up to £1,541.75 per month) and the employer will pay 5%, up to £125 per month). 

The combination of these payments means the employee will continue to receive a minimum of 73% of their usual wages, as long as they earn up to £3,125 per month. Employers will still be eligible for the £1,000 Job Retention Bonus.

JSS Closed:

JSS Closed covers businesses that have been legally required to close due to coronavirus restrictions in their local area. Each employee will continue to receive two-thirds of their usual pay. This amount will be paid by the employer and is fully-funded by the Government. This is capped at £2,083.33 per month, but the employer is allowed to top this up themselves at their discretion.

The key facts:

  • All small and medium-sized businesses will be eligible, even if they haven't used the furlough scheme.

  • Businesses will still be eligible for the Jobs Retention Bonus if they utilize the Jobs Support Scheme.

How to apply:

This scheme will open when the extended Coronavirus Jobs Retention Scheme ends in March 2021. 


Self-Employment Income Support Scheme (SEISS)

Update: The SEISS has been extended. See below for further details.

The Self-Employment Income Support Scheme (SEISS) is designed to support self-employed individuals in the form of grants, covering three month periods from November 2020 to January 2021 and February 2021 to April 2021.

The key facts:

  • Each grant will be paid in a single lump sum instalment, the first of which will cover the period 1st November 2020 until 31st January 2021, the second covering the period from 1st February 2021 until 30th April 2021.

  • The taxable grant covers 40% of average monthly trading profits, capped at £3,750 in total. This is proportionate to the support received by employees under the Job Support Scheme (JSS).

How to apply:

The Government is due to provide further details, eligibility criteria and details on how to apply soon. We'd recommend bookmarking the SEISS application page



Bounce Back Loans

Small business owners can access loans of between £2,000 and £50,000 in a matter of days using the Government’s new Bounce Back Loans scheme.

The key facts:

  • You won’t pay any interest or have to make any repayments for the first 12 months.

  • Lenders are working in conjunction with the Government to ensure that after the initial 12 month period, borrowers pay a low, standardized rate of interest.

  • There will be no arrangement fees or early repayment charges.

How to apply:

The Government's "Bounce Back" loans scheme opened for applications on May 4th and is due to run until 31st January 2021. You can apply for a Bounce Back Loan here.



Coronavirus Business Interruption Loan Scheme (CBILS)

This is a government-backed temporary loan scheme for small businesses, delivered by the British Business Bank in partnership with over 90 accredited lenders.

The key facts:

  • The Government will cover the first 12 months of interest payments.

  • They will offer a guarantee to lenders of up to 80% of the loan value.

  • Under CBILS the maximum loan value is set to £5 million, available on repayment of up to six years and is subject to affordability.

  • Borrowers are 100% liable for the repayments and debt.

  • There are no arrangement or security fees.

  • To be eligible, businesses must be UK-based in their business activity, with an annual turnover of no more than £45m.

  • Loans in the scheme are limited to a maximum of 25% of 2019 turnover or double the annual wage bill, whichever is greater.

  • The lender will likely require a number of documents including (but not limited to); MI to end of year 2019, 2017-2018 & 2018-2019 accounts, assets & liabilities, details of latest payroll, three months' latest business bank statements, and an explanation of how the funds will be used.

  • Lenders can't ask for a personal guarantee for loans under £250,000. Personal guarantees can be requested for loans over £250,000. This can be up to a maximum of 20% of the loan value and mustn't include the borrower's principle private residence. 

  • Businesses don't have to fail being approved for a lender's other products before being offered CBILS.

How to apply:


This scheme is due to end on 31st January 2021. Businesses will need to apply via an accredited partner.


Coronavirus Large Business Interruption Loan Scheme (CLBILS)

This is a government-backed temporary loan scheme for medium and large businesses, delivered by the British Business Bank in partnership with accredited lenders.

The key facts:

  • This scheme is in place to support large businesses negatively impacted by Covid-19 with an annual turnover of over £45 million.

  • The Government will offer a guarantee to lenders of up to 80% of the outstanding loan value.

  • Medium and large UK businesses will be able to access government-backed loans such as term loans, revolving credit, invoice finance and asset finance through accredited lenders.

  • The maximum amount available to a borrower through CLBILS is £200m and the minimum is £50m.

  • All CLBILS products must be repaid within three years.

  • Personal guarantees can't be taken for loans of under £250,000 in value, but can be taken for loans above this figure. This can be up to a maximum of 20% of the loan value and mustn't include the borrower's principle private residence. 

  • Borrowers are 100% liable for the repayments and debt.

  • To be eligible, businesses must be UK-based in their business activity.

  • The lender will likely require a number of documents including (but not limited to); MI to end of year 2019, 2017-2018 & 2018-2019 accounts, assets & liabilities, details of latest payroll, three months' latest business bank statements, and an explanation of how the funds will be used.

How to apply:


Businesses will need to apply via an accredited partner.



Business Rates Holidays

The Government has announced a 12-month business rates holiday for all businesses in the retail, hospitality, and leisure sectors, as well as all nurseries, for the 2020-2021 tax year.

The key facts:

  • Small businesses such as shops, restaurants, cafes, bars, pubs, cinemas, live music venues, gyms, hotels, guest houses and more do not have to pay business rates for the 2020 to 2021 tax year.

  • Nurseries will automatically not pay any business rates for the 2020-2021 tax year. Your property will benefit if your business is on Ofsted Early Years Register and wholly or mainly use the property for the provision of the Early Years Foundation Stage.

How to apply:

You don't need to do anything - this will automatically be applied. You can find your local authority here.



Coronavirus Job Retention Scheme

Update: This scheme is due to end at the end of March 2021.

Businesses and organisations are able to apply for a grant from HMRC that will cover the wages of furloughed workers who aren’t able to work temporarily.

The key facts:

  • The government will pay 80% of wages up to a cap of £2,500.00 per month. Employers will need to continue to pay National Insurance and employer pension contributions (on average, this amounts to around 5% of the total monthly cost of hiring an employee)

  • The amount the employer needs to contribute will be reviewed in January 2021

  • The scheme covers all full-time employees, part-time employees, employees on agency contracts and employees on flexible or 0 hour contracts. 

  • The employer must have a UK bank account.

  • The scheme will cover the salary of any directors also on the PAYE.

  • Employers can ask employees to work part-time while on furlough. Employers will be able to claim for the hours not worked through the CJRS. Employers will need to report and claim for a minimum period of a week.  

How to apply

To access the scheme, you need to designate affected employees as ‘furloughed workers,’ and notify employees of this change. You then need to submit information about these employees and their earnings to HMRC. You can find out more information here. HMRC retains the right to retrospectively audit your claim.


SSP relief

A statutory sick pay (SSP) relief package for businesses, whereby the Government will refund up to 2-weeks’ SSP per eligible employee.

The key facts:

  • Available to SMEs with fewer than 250 employees.

  • Employers will need to maintain sickness records, but no GP fit note will need to be provided.

How to apply:

You can use the Coronavirus Statutory Sick Pay Rebate Scheme to claim back employees' coronavirus-related Statutory Sick Pay (SSP) here.


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