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COVID-19 - Business Support Schemes

The UK and world economies are in unprecedented times in the midst of the coronavirus outbreak. In order to reduce the economic effect of COVID-19, the Chancellor of the Exchequer, Rishi Sunak, has introduced several schemes to help British business and the self employed stay afloat. Please read on for a concise, simple overview of what you can claim to help you and your business survive this pandemic.

If You Are A Business

The government have issued several schemes in order to help businesses survive and to protect the employment of staff. See below for more detail.

Business Interruption Loan

The government have enabled small - medium sized businesses to access loans of up to £5M, for up to 6 years and interest free for the first 12 months. Your business is eligible for this scheme if it is UK based, with turnover of no more than £45M per year and meets the other British Business Bank eligibility criteria. You should apply through your lender or via one of the 40 accredited finance providers offering the scheme.

Coronavirus Job Retention Scheme

The UK government have offered support to businesses to continue paying their staff, even in the event that the employees cannot work. This scheme is in place to avoid mass redundancy and unemployment. The government will reimburse companies up to 80% of an employees monthly wage, up to a cost of £2500 per month. Rather than laying off staff, companies should advise HMRC that their employees have been "furloughed" to receive the support. All businesses with a PAYE scheme that started on or before 28th February 2020 are eligible, provided they have a UK bank account.

V.A.T. Deferral Scheme

All VAT payments will be deferred for the next 3 months. UK VAT Registered businesses will not need to make VAT payments normally due with VAT returns during this period. Companies will be given until the end of the 2020-21 tax year to pay any VAT that has become due in this period. If you wish to take advantage of this scheme and pay by direct debit, you should temporarily cancel your direct debit immediately.

These schemes will be the most widely used by UK businesses, but there are others available (particularly for those in the retail, hospitality and leisure industries). To view all schemes visit

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