HMRC are now contacting taxpayers to advise of eligibility for the Self Employed Income Support Scheme (SEISS). HMRC have also launched an online tool which tests eligibility so taxpayers can check if they will be able to claim. As a reminder, the scheme is available to self-employed individuals who have average trading profits of less than £50,000 over a three year period ended 5 April 2019. This trading income must represent at least 50% of the recipient’s total income.
The grant from HMRC provides a one off payment of 80% of averaged profits up to a maximum of £7,500 to cover the three months to 30 June 2020.
The link requires the user to enter their Unique Taxpayer Reference and national insurance number and instantly provides a response as to whether the taxpayer is eligible or not. If the user is eligible it then asks for contact details using the Government Gateway ID and password as a system access requirement stating that they will be able to submit a claim from mid May. Many taxpayers may find they do not have or have forgotten their Government Gateway ID and password and will need to apply for these in order to record their contact details for the scheme. Should the taxpayer disagree on the decision that they are not eligible there is an option to appeal this.
A key point to note is that agents will not be able to submit claims on their clients behalf and will only be able to provide support. There are a lot of details as to how the profit calculation will be made covering special cases such as farmers whose profits may have been averaged. Links to the information relating to the scheme are below.