Self employed people: What can you claim from the government amid coronavirus lockdown?

People are being advised to stay at home as the UK deals with the current COVID-19 pandemic. With warnings the coronavirus outbreak could last for many more months, many people are looking for Government support at this difficult time.

What can you claim from the Government if you are self-employed?

Chancellor Rishi Sunak has introduced several measures to provide relief for workers during the coronavirus outbreak.

Although some of the financial packages were well-received by the public, many have expressed concerns for freelancers and self-employed people at this time.

Unlike people who have an employer, the self-employed may not be entitled to Statutory Sick Pay (SSP) should they become too ill to work.


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Self-employed people are also not entitled to the Government’s new Coronavirus Job Retention Scheme, where the Government will pay furloughed employees up to 80 percent of their salary instead of their employer.

However, to help freelancers the Chancellor has announced there will be no payments on account due in July this year.

This measure will allow self-employed people more time to pay their tax bill.

There are also other avenues self-employed people can explore during this time if they need financial support.

Universal Credit

Under the Chancellor’s new measures, it is now easier to make a claim for Universal Credit during the coronavirus outbreak.

Depending on your circumstances, you may be eligible to receive a number of benefits from Universal Credit.

You’ll receive your first payment around five weeks after applying online if your application is successful.


Furlough: If you are furloughed can you take on another job? [EXPLAINER]
Job retention scheme explained: How long do you work to be eligible? [ANALYSIS]
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However, you can ask for an advance when you apply if you need help sooner.

You can apply for Universal Credit on the Government website HERE.

As a result of the COVID-19 outbreak, the requirements of the Minimum Income Floor will also be temporarily relaxed throughout the pandemic.

New claimants will not have to attend a jobcentre to demonstrate they are looking for employment at this time.

Employment and Support Allowance (ESA)

If you are not eligible for Statutory Sick Pay, you may be able to make a claim for the new style Employment and Support Allowance (ESA).

If you have coronavirus or are advised to stay at home, you are eligible to make a claim.

If your claim is successful, the ESA is paid from the first day of sickness, rather than day eight as it was previously stated.

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