New lockdown grants to support businesses

 

Businesses in the retail, hospitality and leisure sectors are to receive a one-off top-up grant worth up to £9000 to help them through to the Spring, Chancellor Rishi Sunak has announced.

The latest announcement comes in addition to £1.1 billion further discretionary grant funding for local authorities, Local Restriction Support Grants worth up to £3000 a month and extension of the furlough scheme.

The Treasury confirmed that a £594 million discretionary fund will also be made available to support other businesses not eligible for the grants, that might be affected by the restrictions.

These businesses should apply to their local authorities.

The new grants are:

The one-off top-ups will be granted to closed businesses as follows:

  • £4000 for businesses with a rateable value of £15,000 or under
  • £6000 for businesses with a rateable value between £15,000 and £51,000
  • £9000 for businesses with a rateable value of over £51,000.

The cash is provided on a per-property basis to support businesses through the latest restrictions, and is expected to benefit over 600,000 business properties, worth £4 billion in total across all nations of the UK.

Annual Investment Allowance £1m cap extended for a year

The Treasury has confirmed that the annual investment allowance (AIA), designed to stimulate investment in UK manufacturing, is to be extended further for an additional year in a bid to counter the current downturn in activity.

The AIA provides a tax write off against profits for expenditure incurred on plant and machinery by businesses and owners of commercial property.

Businesses, including manufacturing firms, can continue to claim up to £1m in same-year tax relief through the AIA for capital investments in plant and machinery assets until 1 January 2022.

The extension of the temporary £1m cap was originally due to revert to £200,000 on 1 January 2021.

Jesse Norman, financial secretary to the Treasury, said: ‘It is vital that we support business through the difficult months ahead.

‘Extending the AIA’s £1m cap will give businesses the confidence they need to invest into next year, helping them to grow whilst benefitting the wider economy too.’

Self assessment deadline - 31 January 2021

Each year, around 11m people complete a self assessment tax return. You can complete your 2019-20 tax return at any time up to the deadline but HMRC recommends (and we agree) completing it early to allow time to pay the tax bill or set up a payment plan. 

You must complete a self assessment return if you:

  • have earned more than £2,500 from renting out property;
  • have received, or their partner has received, Child Benefit and either of them had an annual income of more than £50,000;
  • have received more than £2,500 in other untaxed income, for example from tips or commission;
  • are a self-employed sole trader whose annual turnover is over £1,000;
  • are an employee claiming expenses in excess of £2,500;
  • have an annual income of over £100,000; or
  • have earned income from abroad that they need to pay tax on.

HMRC’s interim director general of customer services Karl Khan said: ‘HMRC is determined to help people during this difficult time. We know many will have been adversely affected by the coronavirus pandemic, or will need help to spread the cost of their tax bill.

‘That’s why we’ve made it quick and simple to set up a payment plan to spread the costs and help people get back on their feet. It’s easy to do online and there’s no need to call us to set it up.’

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Statutory rates from April 2021

The Government has announced its proposed rates for statutory maternity, paternity, adoption, parental bereavement and shared parental payments from April 2021. The 2021/22 rate is set to increase from £151.20 to £151.97 per week.

Additionally, the rate of statutory sick pay (SSP) is also set to increase from £95.85 to £96.35 per week. 

The NLW will increase from £8.72 to £8.91 in April 2021 and will be extended to 23 and 24-year-olds for the first time.

HMRC refunds - be scam smart

 

Be aware of copycat HMRC websites and phishing scams. Always type in the full online address www.gov.uk/hmrc to get the correct link for filing your self-assessment return online securely and free of charge.

Also be alert if someone calls, emails or texts claiming to be from HMRC, saying that you can claim financial help, are due a tax refund or owe tax. It might be a scam. Check GOV.UK for information on how to a recognise genuine HMRC contact.

ACCA Accredited

Numerico Chartered Certified Accountants is accredited by the ACCA, which means we are wholly composed of Chartered Certified Accountants and covered by ACCA’s Group Consumer Credit Licence under the terms of the Consumer Credit Act 1974.

 

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