The scheme which was expected in June 20 was designed to provide support to the self employed in the form of a grant of 80% of averaged profit from the last three tax years and was due to be paid in a single lump sum at the end of next month. HMRC have however announced they are this week starting to contact those they believe are eligible to apply for the scheme, and inviting them to use their eligibility checker ahead of the claims portal being launched next week, way ahead of the original schedule.
Accessing the Eligibility Checker
The SEISS scheme checker can be accessed here on the gov.uk website.
To check your eligibility you will need your:
- Unique Tax Payer Reference (UTR), shown on Self Assessment Tax Returns and Letters
- National Insurance Number, found on Payslips, P60s and Self Assessment letters
- Government Gateway User ID and Password
On visiting the checker you are asked to enter your Self Assessment UTR and then your NIC number, as shown below.
Next a confirmation notice is shown which provides guidance on eligibility to make a claim. If confirmed to be eligible you are next asked to enter your Government Gateway User ID and Password. If you have forgotten these, you can recover them using the link provided on the screen and their will be no requirement to wait for pin numbers or codes arriving in the post.
Next you are asked to provide a contact email address and optionally a mobile phone number. This is so HMRC can contact you about making a claim. Randomised dates will be generated for those who are eligible to make the claim with the portal opening between 13th – 18th May 20 and payments expected six working days later.
Once all details have been entered and a submission confirmation is shown on the screen and a reminder to only claim if your business has been adversely affected by the virus.
Useful to Note
Not everyone will be eligible for the scheme, requirements include:
- averaged profits below £50,000 and more than half of such income must come from trading activities, for partnerships this is based on your share of partnership profits
- the grant covers 80% of profit up to a maximum of £7,500
- claimants must currently be self employed and have submitted a self assessment tax return for the 18/19 tax year as an individual or as a member of a partnership, and will continue to trade in the 20/21 tax year
- grant claims are subject to tax and national insurance
- if the calculator advises you are not eligible and you think you should be, you can ask HMRC to review this
- you can continue to work or undertake voluntary activities and claim Universal Credit
- agents/advisors can help with providing assistance with the eligibility checker however they will not be able to assist with making claims on a clients behalf
- you must keep a record of your claim including the amount, reference number and evidence your business was adversely affected by coronavirus, as claims will be reviewed and checked by HMRC
The SEISS grant is not the only help available. More information on other support can be found here.