Self-Employment Income Support Scheme

Self-Employment Income Support Scheme

posted on May 6, 2020

by: Ian Marlow / 0 comments / Self-EmploymentUncategorized

HMRC will this week start contacting people who may be eligible for the new Self-Employment Income Support Scheme (SEISS) telling them to be ready to claim when the portal opens next week. The process is intended to be quick and easy. If they are eligible, this scheme will allow them to claim a taxable grant worth 80% of their trading profits up to a maximum of £7,500. The initial contact to self-employed taxpayers is being made by email. Or, if the taxpayer has no email, HMRC will text message where it has a mobile phone number. Only where HMRC does not hold an email address or mobile phone number for the taxpayer will it send a letter, but it may not arrive until next week.

Self-Employment Income Support Scheme Eligibility

HMRC is encouraging taxpayers to use its SEISS eligibility checker tool to check whether they can claim. However, this online tool only asks for the taxpayer’s UTR (Unique Taxpayer Refeernce) and NI numbers, it doesn’t ask about current or future trading intentions. Tax agents can use this checker on behalf of clients, and ask HMRC for a review if they think a client has been incorrectly rejected as ineligible. The taxpayer is not required to use the checker tool in order to make a SEISS claim. However, if they do use it and provide an email address for further correspondence, this may speed up the process of the claim. HMRC will use that email address to tell the taxpayer exactly when the SEISS portal will be open for them. This will be a specific date between 13 and 18 May, with different days allocated to different taxpayers.

The fact that the taxpayer has received this initial contact about the SEISS grant from HMRC doesn’t mean that they will meet all the criteria to receive the grant. HMRC will have the information about their self-employed profits for the years to 2018/19, but to claim the SEISS the taxpayer must also have traded in 2019/20 and be intending to trade in 2020/21. This information about current and future trading intentions will not yet be available to HMRC.

To be eligible for the Self-Employment Income Support Scheme grant you should have:

  • registered with HMRC as self-employed
  • been trading in 2018/19 and 2019/20
  • still be trading in 2020/21 (or would be if it were not for the coronavirus shutdown)
  • have lost trading profits due to coronavirus
  • submitted tax returns for at least some of the 2016/17 to 2018/19 tax years which include self-employed trading income
  • have at least half of your annual average income from self-employed profits
  • average self-employed profits for 2018/19 do not exceed £50,000 and were more than nil or
  • average annual self-employed profits for 2016/17 to 2018/19 do not exceed £50,000 and were more than nil

Beware Scam emails

There are already numerous scam texts circulating claiming to be from HMRC, asking for information such as your UTR number. This information could be used by scammers to make a fraudulent claim.  The genuine emails and texts from HMRC do not include an active link to click on but only tell you to be ready to claim through GOV‌.UK. This is the only service they can use. If someone asks you to click on a link or to give information such as name, credit card or bank details, they should not respond. It is a scam.

Suspicious emails about the Self-Employment Income Support Scheme claiming to be from HMRC should reported to or a text sent to 60599.





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Ian Marlow

Managing Director

Ian Marlow, an Elite Advisor for Quickbooks Online, has a passion for helping individuals and businesses in all aspects of online accounting and leads an experienced team of tax and accounting professionals.
6th May 2020
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