Recognising the continued impact that coronavirus (COVID-19) has had on the self-employed, amongst the package of measures announced in the UK Budget, the Government confirmed further support for the self-employed.

Self-Employment Income Support Scheme (SEISS)

Fourth SEISS grant

The fourth SEISS grant will be worth 80% of your average monthly trading profits, paid out in a single instalment covering three months’ worth of profits and capped at £7,500 in total.  This grant will cover the period 1 February to 30 April 2021 and can be claimed by late April. To be eligible for the fourth phase you must have filed a 2019-20 self-assessment tax return.

This means that for the first time, of the likely 600,000 individuals eligible for SEISS, this will include those who previously couldn’t benefit under the first three phases of the scheme because they only became self-employed in the tax year to 5 April 2020. 

All other criteria will remain the same for the fourth grant as was in place for the third grant.

Fifth SEISS grant

Similar to support being offered to the employed, the Chancellor today announced a fifth and final SEISS grant covering 1 May to 30 September 2021.

The value of this grant will be determined by a turnover test, to target it at those who need it most as the economy reopens.

If your turnover has fallen by 30% or more, you will continue to receive the full grant worth 80% of three months’ average trading profits, capped at £7,500. If your turnover has fallen by less than 30%, then it will be capped at a maximum grant of £2,850.

This final grant can be claimed in late July.

Other points to note

Please note the Government will update the legislation relating to SEISS to ensure that, in addition to being able to reclaim grant payments made to a self-employed individual or partner of a partnership who did not meet the eligibility criteria at time of claim, they can also recover grants where the individual was entitled at time of claim but subsequently ceases to be entitled to all or part of the grant. 

The legislation will also be updated to make clear that future payments from SEISS (i.e. the fourth and fifth awards) will be taxed as income for the tax year in which they are received (i.e. 2021/22 tax year).