SEISS extension – Rishi Sunak confirms there will be grant 5 as eligibility rules change

Budget 2021: Rishi Sunak outlines support for self-employed

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The Chancellor Rishi Sunak made the announcement during his 2021 Spring Budget statement in the House of Commons today. He also shared details about the fourth SEISS grant.

The Chancellor said the latest announcement to the SEISS made it the “fifth and final grant” from May onwards.

People will continue to receive grants worth three months’ of average profits with the system open for claims from late July.

But, as the economy reopens, support will be “targeted”, he said.

People whose turnover has fallen by 30 percent or more will continue to receive full 80 percent grant.

People whose turnover has fallen by less than 30 percent will get a 30 percent grant.

Grant number four covers the period from February to April, and it will be available to claim from April.

The money will be worth 80 percent of the three months’ average trading profits up to £7,500.

Some details were unveiled this week, prior to the Budget statement.

This included an opening up of the rules as to who is eligible to claim the grant.

HM Treasury said hundreds of thousands more people will be eligible for the grants this time.

This is because the tax return data for 2019/20 is now available.

It comes after Mr Sunak faced criticism that newly self-employed people were unable to benefit from the scheme previously.

More than 600,000 people – many of whom became self-employed in 2019/20 – are estimated to now be eligible for cash grants.

Ahead of the Budget, Mr Sunak said: “Our Covid support schemes have been a lifeline to millions, protecting jobs and incomes across the UK.

“There’s now light at the end of the tunnel with a roadmap for reopening, so it’s only right that we continue to help business and individuals through the challenging months ahead – and beyond.”

Derek Cribb, CEO of IPSE (the Association of Independent Professionals and the Self-Employed), said: “After almost a year, this support will be a tremendous relief to hundreds of thousands of self-employed people who could not access SEISS because they had not yet filed a full tax return.

“We are delighted that the government has heeded our calls to get support to this struggling group.

“It is also very welcome that the Chancellor will be introducing a fifth SEISS grant for the UK’s self-employed.

“We hope these generous and welcome moves are early signs of more positives for freelancers in this Budget: it’s crucial that the Chancellor does not forget that there are other large groups of freelancers currently excluded from support – particularly sole directors of limited companies.”

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