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Coronavirus

UK practical business advice: COVID-19

Last updated: 29 May 11:00, with updated government guidance on the coronavirus Local Authority Discretionary Grants Fund.

Contents

We have provided a quick summary of UK government support and guidance from ICAEW to help you secure the advice and assistance you need.

You can read the latest advice and guidance from government for businesses on its coronavirus pages.

We will be updating this page on a continuous basis to keep you, your business and your clients informed with all the latest information. For tax specific advice you may also want to visit the tax section of ICAEW's coronavirus hub. 

Business Support Finder

The government's Business Support Finder Tool is aimed at helping businesses navigate the range of financial support they are eligible for during the current coronavirus pandemic.

Government logo and the words 'Coronavirus' and 'Emergency support for businesses'

Employers

ICAEW guidance

Guidance on the Coronavirus Job Retention Scheme (CJRS) 

Key information on the UK government's key support scheme for employers, including: key dates, how to apply and who isn't covered by CJRS. This guidance also provides links to useful resources, such as an example claim form, and to further support from ICAEW and HMRC.

CJRS - emerging issues and answers

The Tax Faculty provided a summary of issues that have emerged since the launch of CJRS and the answers that HMRC has provided. Issues covered, include: the requirement for a national insurance number; what furloughed directors can do; annual payroll periods and employment allowance.

COVID-19: HMRC confirms agent authorisation for CJRS claims 

The Tax Faculty has received an update from HMRC on authorising agents to make CJRS grant applications on behalf of clients. This is our step-by-step guide.

Government guidance

Check if you can claim for your employees' wages through the Coronavirus Job Retention Scheme

Find out if you’re eligible and how much you can claim to cover wages for employees on temporary leave ('furlough') due to coronavirus (COVID-19).

Latest news articles

TUPE transfers after 28 February gain access to CJRS

4 May: Updated guidance published on 30 April has amended the cut-off date for access to the Coronavirus Job Retention Scheme following a TUPE transfer.

Firms rejected for CJRS due to tax debt urged to reapply

1 May: Some organisations have been incorrectly refused support under the Coronavirus Job Retention Scheme (CJRS) due to tax arrears and should reapply, HMRC confirms, as ONS data shows CJRS is most popular support scheme.

HMRC updates CJRS guidance again

27 April: Updated guidance from HMRC includes how to report wages using RTI, a new calculator and more explanation about who qualifies. ICAEW’s Tax Faculty outlines the changes and shares a new downloadable template.

Helpsheets

Engagement letters helpsheet: Part 2 J-C Furlough grant claim services

Sample wording for claiming the coronavirus job retention scheme grant on behalf of clients, for practitioners and businesses. This is a supplementary schedule to the main engagement letter helpsheet.

External resources

Get help with the Coronavirus Job Retention Scheme

Contact HMRC via their dedicated CJRS helpline.

Coronavirus Job Retention Scheme calculator

Calculator to work out the figures you will need when you complete an online claim through the scheme. It is aimed at organisations with a small number of employees.

Acas Furlough letter template

A template for an agreement to temporarily send home an employee because there’s no work ('furlough'). Free to download and use.

Employment legal advice

Legal advice for employers during coronavirus provided by Edwin Coe LLP.

All businesses

ICAEW guidance

COVID-19: VAT and self assessment payment deferral

The UK government is supporting businesses during the coronavirus pandemic by deferring VAT and self assessment payments. ICAEW's Tax Faculty outlines how the deferral will work.

COVID-19: Support on negotiating time to pay

Useful tips on how to negotiate with HMRC from the Tax Faculty, as they seek seeks further clarification on the support for businesses having difficulty paying tax bills due to COVID-19.

Changes to insolvency rules to help companies trade - coronavirus

The government will amend insolvency law to give companies undergoing a rescue or restructure the breathing space to keep trading while they explore options for rescue.

Government guidance

Self-employed

ICAEW guidance

Self-Employment Income Support Scheme (SEISS) 

If you are self-employed or a member of a partnership in the UK and have lost income due to coronavirus (COVID-19) this scheme will allow you to claim a taxable grant worth 80% of your trading profits up to a maximum of £2,500 a month. This guidance covers how to apply for the Self-employment Income Support Scheme (SEISS), including information on the pre-application phase, the eligibility checker and disputes.

The SEISS application process

ICAEW’s Tax Faculty provides comprehensive guidance on the SEISS application process, including creating a government gateway ID, the eligibility checker, how to request a review of entitlement and the role of tax agents.

Government guidance

External resources

Deferral of Self-Assessment payment

The second self-assessment payment on account, that is ordinarily due to be paid to HMRC by 31 July 2020, may now be deferred until 31 January 2021.

Micro and small businesses

ICAEW guidance

Future Fund - government funding to match private investment

Companies that secure private investment can attract up to £5m on a matched basis from the government’s Future Fund. The scheme will be open from 20 May 2020.

Bounce Back Loan Scheme: what you need to know

Smaller businesses impacted by coronavirus are now able to apply for funding support of up to £50,000 via the Bounce Back Loan Scheme if certain eligibility criteria are met.

Cash grants for businesses receiving small business rate relief - coronavirus

There are cash grants available for businesses receiving Small Business Rate Relief or Rural Rate Relief through the Small Business Grants Fund (SBGF) and Retail, Hospitality and Leisure Grant Fund (RHLGF).

Government guidance

NEW - Apply for the coronavirus Local Authority Discretionary Grants Fund 

Small and micro businesses with fixed property costs that are not eligible for the Small Business Grant Fund or the Retail, Hospitality and Leisure Grant Fund may be eligible for the Discretionary Grants Scheme.

Bounce Back Loan Scheme - Factsheet for SMEs

Apply for the Future Fund

Business support grant funding - guidance for businesses

Latest news articles

Government announces additional grants for small businesses

Details of additional funding for those not covered by existing local authority grants will be revealed this week.

CBILS: approvals increasing, businesses encouraged to apply

Approvals for the government’s emergency loan scheme for small and medium-sized businesses are increasing at a much faster rate than applications, according to the latest industry figures.

CBILS update: evidence requirements relaxed

The UK’s seven largest small business lenders have relaxed evidence requirements for applications to the existing Coronavirus Business Interruption Loan Scheme.

Government launches new small business microloan scheme

The chancellor has announced a new Bounce Back loan scheme, allowing small businesses hit by the impact of coronavirus measures to apply for up £50,000.

Medium-sized businesses

ICAEW guidance

NEW - Future Fund - government funding to match private investment

Companies that secure private investment can attract up to £5m on a matched basis from the government’s Future Fund. The scheme will be open from 20 May 2020.

The Coronavirus Business Interruption Loan Scheme: revised

The Coronavirus Business Interruption Loan Scheme (CBILS), introduced on 23 March and revised on 2 April, provides support for businesses to access funding if certain eligibility criteria are met. 

Government guidance

Latest news articles

Nine new lenders announced for the Coronavirus Business Interruption Loan Scheme (CBILS)

The British Business Bank has announced that it has approved nine new lenders for accreditation under the Coronavirus Business Interruption Loan Scheme (CBILS), bringing the total number of CBILS lenders to over 60.

CBILS: approvals increasing, businesses encouraged to apply

Approvals for the government’s emergency loan scheme for small and medium-sized businesses are increasing at a much faster rate than applications, according to the latest industry figures.

Large businesses

ICAEW guidance

The Coronavirus Large Business Interruption Loan Scheme

The Coronavirus Large Business Interruption Loan Scheme (CLBILS) provides financial support to mid-sized and larger UK businesses with annual turnover above £45 million that are losing revenue, and seeing their cashflow disrupted, as a result of the COVID-19 outbreak.

Applications will be open from Monday 4 May.

Lending facility for larger firms - coronavirus 

The Bank of England’s direct lending facility for larger businesses, the Covid Corporate Financing Facility (CCFF), is open for applications via banks. 

Government guidance

Latest news articles

CLBILS: Treasury beefs up big business loan scheme 

20 May 2020: the government has increased the maximum available under the Coronavirus Large Business Interruption Loans Scheme to £200m as part of a raft of changes to the support measure. 

CCFF update: companies without a credit rating

23 April 2020: The Bank of England has released further information for companies without a credit rating that want to access the Covid Corporate Financing Facility.

Retail, hospitality and leisure businesses

ICAEW guidance

Business rates holiday and cash grants for retail, hospitality and leisure businesses - coronavirus 

Businesses in the retail, hospitality and leisure sectors in England will not have to pay business rates for the 2020 to 2021 tax year. There are also cash grants of £25,000 that will be will be given to businesses in these sectors meeting the thresholds.

Government guidance

Nursery businesses

ICAEW guidance

Business rates holiday for nursery businesses - coronavirus

Nurseries in England do not have to pay business rates for the 2020-2021 tax year.

Government guidance

Illustrated COVID-19 particles
Find a chartered accountant

ICAEW Chartered Accountants can provide reliable and professional guidance to help achieve business success.

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Government FAQs

Read government’s Frequently asked questions that will be regularly updated according to the latest advice and guidance.

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Government COVID-19 website

You can read the latest advice and guidance from government for businesses on its coronavirus pages.