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Deadline warning for self-employed

Shropshire’s self-employed have been warned they will need to act quickly if they don’t want to miss out on the Government’s third Covid support grant roll-out.

Martyn Bramwell, who heads up Dyke Yaxley Chartered Accountants’ Small Business team in Shrewsbury and Telford, said the deadline for claims was January 29.

“This is unfortunate timing as it falls at the same time as the deadline for submission of the 2019/20 tax returns which could lead to an administrative nightmare for business owners.”

Martyn said this is the third support payment that has been made available for the self-employed, but this time some of the additional conditions attached had caused some confusion.

“Business owners need to pay special attention to the criteria that requires them to confirm they’ve suffered a significant reduction in trading profits.

“This can be a complex situation particularly where the eligibility period for the third grant straddles two qualifying periods, or where the taxpayer has more than one trade.

“If this is you, it should be sufficient to show that one of the trades has suffered reduced activity, capacity or demand, or that you’ve been temporarily unable to operate since November 1, 2020.

“You will need to confirm that you reasonably believe your circumstances will cause a significant reduction in your profits compared with what you would otherwise have expected to earn – but you wouldn’t need to consider the two trades together in your calculations.”

Martyn said it was important for business owners to remember that the self-employed grants would be taxable in the current tax year, regardless of the date of the end of your financial year.

“The Government has already announced there will be a fourth grant to support self-employed businesses that will provide support for the period from February to April 2021 – but there are no details yet on the eligibility requirements or the amount of support that will be available.

“So taxpayers should go ahead and file their 2019/20 tax return in time for the end of January deadline, as despite the Coronavirus pandemic, you still have responsibilities that need to be met.

“But if you are struggling to complete your tax return in time, or you need help to claim the self-employed support grant, always seek professional help and don’t just put off the paperwork – you could face serious financial consequences if you ignore the rules.”


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