ENGLAND – NEW NATIONAL RESTRICTIONS FROM 5 NOVEMBER
The Government has issued information on the new national restrictions, including what they mean for working from home and business closures together with the financial support available.
The guidance covers:
Businesses and venues
To reduce help social contact, the Government has ordered certain businesses and venues to close. These include:
A full list of the business closures will be published and set out in law shortly.
Going to work
The guidance says that work should be done from home where practicable. Where people cannot do so (for instance people who work in critical national infrastructure, construction or manufacturing) they should continue to travel to work/attend their workplace.
The Government states that this is essential to keeping the country operating and supporting vital sectors and employers.
The risk of transmission can be reduced if COVID-secure guidelines are followed closely. Extra consideration should be given to those people at higher risk.
The Covid -secure guidelines can be found here: https://www.gov.uk/guidance/working-safely-during-coronavirus-covid-19
Update on Government financial supports
Mortgage payment holidays
Mortgage payment holidays will no longer end 31 October. Borrowers who have been impacted by coronavirus and have not yet had a mortgage payment holiday will be entitled to a six month holiday, and those that have already started a mortgage payment holiday will be able to top up to six months without this being recorded on their credit file.
The FCA will announce further information and we will update you when we have seen it.
Businesses required to close in England due to local or national restrictions will be eligible for the following:
Business grant policy is fully devolved. Devolved Administrations will receive UK Government financial support which they could use to establish similar schemes.
The Coronavirus Job Retention Scheme (CJRS)
This has been extended until December. This was due to end 31 October. The Grant will ensure employees receive 80% of their current salary for hours not worked, up to a maximum of £2,500.
Businesses will have flexibility to bring furloughed employees back to work on a part time basis or furlough them full-time, employers will be asked to cover National Insurance and employer pension contributions.
As with the current CJRS, employers are still able to choose to top up employee wages above the scheme grant at their own expense if they wish.
The Government will confirm shortly when claims can first be made in respect of employee wage costs during November, but there will be no gap in eligibility for support between the previously announced end-date of CJRS and this extension.
The Job Support Scheme (JSS), which was scheduled to come in on Sunday 1st November, has been postponed until the furlough scheme ends.
Details on the CJRS can be found here: https://www.gov.uk/guidance/claim-for-wages-through-the-coronavirus-job-retention-scheme?utm_source=7fff20fd-9d03-4182-85ce-2a8a285d8af3&utm_medium=email&utm_campaign=govuk-notifications&utm_content=immediate
Government increases support for self-employed across the UK
It was announced on the 2 November that the government is increasing its support to the self-employed over the coming months and ensuring people get paid faster than previously planned.
To reflect the recent changes to the furlough scheme, the UK-wide Self-Employment Income Support Scheme (SEISS) will be made more generous – with self-employed individuals receiving 80% of their average trading profits for November.
To ensure those who need support get it as soon as possible, payments will also be made more quickly with the claims window being brought forward from 14 December to 30 November.
As SEISS grants are calculated over three months, the uplift for November to 80 percent, along with the 40 percent level of trading profits for December and January, increases the total level of the third grant to 55 percent of trading profits. The maximum grant will increase to £5,160.
To be eligible for the Grant Extension self-employed individuals, including members of partnerships, must:
Government loan schemes
More businesses will also be able to benefit from government loan schemes which have been extended to the end of January 2021, while firms can ‘top up’ existing Bounce Back Loans should they need additional finance.
Stay safe and rest assured we will keep all our clients fully informed of the new measures and how to claim as we get further details.