Martin Lewis gives advice on the launch of the third SEISS
The Self-Employment Income Support Scheme (SEISS) will close applications for the third grant at the end of this month, meaning claimants must make their claim on or before January 29, 2021. By April 2021, the Government will have provided four grants for eligible self-employed people under the SEISS scheme.
Initially the Government only offered one SEISS grant back in March 2020, however this was later extended to include a second grant.
Towards the end of 2020, the Government announced a third and fourth SEISS grant would be available to claim.
The third SEISS grant will cover November 2020 to January 2021, while the fourth grant will cover February to April 2021.
The third grant will be worth 80 percent of average monthly trading profits for the three-month period.
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The third grant is paid out in one single instalment, and is capped at £7,500 in total.
The grant does not have to be repaid, but it is subject to National Insurance and Income Tax, and it has to be reported on 2020 to 2021 Self Assessment tax returns.
Self-employed individuals and members of partnerships must have traded in both the 2019 to 2020 and 2018 to 2019 tax years to claim, and for the latter tax year Self Assessment tax returns need to have been submitted by April 23, 2020.
Claimants must be currently trading but impacted by reduced demand due to coronavirus, or have been trading but are temporarily unable to do so due to the pandemic.
Claimants must also declare that they intend to continue trading, and that they reasonably believe there will be a significant reduction in trading profits.
When will the fourth self-employed grant be paid?
The Government has confirmed there will be a fourth SEISS grant, which will cover the three-month period of February to April 2021.
However it is not known when the grant will open for applications, or when it will be paid.
The Government website for SEISS currently states: “There will be a fourth grant covering February 2021 to April 2021.
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“We will set out further details, including the level of the fourth grant in due course.”
Currently, it is not yet known whether there will be any changes to the eligibility criteria for the fourth SEISS grant.
At the moment, self-employed people who are limited company directors or who are earning profits above £50,000 may be excluded from SEISS.
Many who had recently started their own businesses have also not been eligible for SEISS, but according to MoneySavingExpert the next grant may see this criteria change.
Martin Lewis explains on the MoneySavingExpert website: “The tax filing for 2019/20 will be done and dusted.
“The fourth grant covers February, March and April 2021 – and will likely be open from late February.
“The deadline for filing tax returns for the 2019/20 tax year is 31 January 2021.
“So when grant four launches, HMRC will have the data on people’s self-employment earnings for the year to 6 April 2020 (which should be mostly normal, with just a few pandemic-impacted weeks in it), making it plausible these could be counted. So I’d ensure you get your filings in, in plenty of time.
“In fact it should be more than plausible. As, by next March, to continue to exclude all new-starter businesses set up after October 2018, two-and-a-half years earlier, seems ludicrous. The opportunity is there to fix it, so it should be fixed.”
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