Coronavirus has caused the UK to go on lockdown, with many self-employed workers left without an income as they are forced to stay home. Now a self-employment income support scheme has been introduced by the Government, but what does this provide?
Speaking in the daily press conference from Downing Street, Chancellor of the Exchequer Rishi Sunak announced a new self-employed income support scheme.
He told a press conference: “To support those who work for themselves, today I am announcing a new self-employed income support scheme.
“The Government will pay self-employed people who have been adversely affected by the coronavirus a taxable grant worth 80 percent of their average monthly profits over the last three years, up to £2,500 a month.”
For people who are struggling right now, self-employed people can access business interruption loans, and self-assessment income tax payments can be deferred until the end of January, Mr Sunak said.
He added self-employed people can now access Universal Credit in full.
Read More: What is the difference between self employed and freelance?
Will self-employed people get help with rent?
There has been no exact measures for self employed people and rent announced as yet, but with 80 percent average of monthly wages available for those who are self-employed, money towards rent will be available.
On March 20, Mr Sunak announced an increase in housing benefit to help support tenants through the coronavirus crisis.
The government also announced tenants would be protected from eviction for at least three months.
Mr Sunak also extended the right to request a three-month payment holiday to buy-to-let landlords and UK Finance confirmed this would include those who have borrowed through a limited company.
The Chancellor said the move – worth up to a maximum of £2,500 a month – would cover 95 percent of self-employed workers.
The package comes after the Government came under sustained pressure as its initial package of financial support only covered employees.
Mr Sunak said: “To support those who work for themselves, today I am announcing a new self-employed income support scheme.
“The Government will pay self-employed people who have been adversely affected by the coronavirus a taxable grant worth 80% of their average monthly profits over the last three years, up to £2,500 a month.”
The Chancellor said the scheme will be available “no later” than the beginning of June.
It is open to anyone with trading profits of up to £50,000 and will only be available to those who make the majority of their income from self-employment so only the “genuinely self-employed” benefit.
He said: “And to minimise fraud only those who are already in self-employment who have a tax return for 2019 will be able to apply.
“95 percent of people who are majority self-employed will benefit from this scheme.”
The Chancellor said “it provides an unprecedented level of support for self-employed people”.