Self-employed workers will be able to apply to receive a fifth instalment of financial Covid support from the government in 2021.
The self-employment income support scheme (SEISS) has been a lifeline for workers who have seen their monthly income battered by the coronavirus pandemic.
Claims are currently being made for the fourth SEISS grant, which covers the period from 1 February 2021 to 30 April 2021, before the 1 June 2021 deadline set by ministers.
The fourth SEISS grant pays 80% of a person’s average trading profits, up to £2,500 a month.
A fifth and final SEISS grant will come into effect after the conclusion of the fourth and be available for self-employed workers to apply for, chancellor Rishi Sunak confirmed.
When can I apply for the 5th SEISS grant?
Mr Sunak revealed plans for a fifth SEISS grant in his March 2021 Budget statement.
The scheme is open to applications from self-employed workers who have seen their income affected by Covid, to help cover losses during the pandemic and lockdown restrictions.
The fifth SEISS grant will cover the five-month period from 1 May 2021 to 30 September 2021 and is widely understood to be the last instalment before the scheme winds down.
It is reported that self-employed workers can apply for the fifth SEISS grant in July, though no official date has been given yet or been confirmed by the government.
Mr Sunak said the government has helped support self-employed workers to the tune of £33billion in all over the duration of the Covid crisis which began in March 2020.
How much is the 5th SEISS grant?
The fourth SEISS grant provides 80% of a self-employed worker's average monthly trading profits, up to the limit of £2,500 per month or £7,500 total over three months.
Support for the fifth SEISS grant is on the same level - 80% of average monthly profits, capped at £2,500 per month - if turnover has reduced by 30% or more over that time.
Claimants who endure smaller losses will receive 30% of average monthly trading profits.
The chancellor said: “As the economy reopens over the summer, it is fair to target our support towards those most affected by the pandemic.
“So people whose turnover has fallen by 30% or more will continue to receive the full 80 per cent grant. People whose turnover has fallen by less than 30% will therefore have less need of taxpayer support and will receive a 30% grant.”
Who is eligible for the 5th SEISS grant?
The government set out the criteria for self-employed workers to claim the fourth and fifth SEISS grants shortly after Mr Sunak’s Budget 2021 speech confirming the continued support.
A further 600,000 people will be able to access the fourth and fifth SEISS grants as the government is taking into consideration 2019/20 and 2020/21 self assessment returns.
It means that newly self-employed workers could apply for these latest two grants.
Claimants must currently be trading but are “impacted by reduced demand” or “temporarily unable to do so” due to Covid and the restrictions imposed to limit the spread of the virus.
The applicant must declare their intention to continue to trade or “reasonably believe there will be a significant reduction in your trading profits”.
There are specific circumstances which will affect eligibility such as having had a new child.
People cannot claim the grant if trading through a limited company or a trust.
How can I apply for the 5th SEISS grant?
The application process for each grant is the same.
Applications can be made through the government portal tax.service.gov.uk for the fourth SEISS grant. The application window for the fifth SEISS grant has not opened yet.
Applicants will need their Government Gateway user ID and password, National Insurance number, Self Assessment Unique Taxpayer Reference (UTR) and bank details.
It can take up to 10 working days for the money is transferred to your account.