Advice Column: Self Employed Support Scheme

Thursday 15th July

As part of the Citizens Advice Exeter and The Express and Echo weekly advice column, this week we focus on support for the self-employed due to Coronavirus.

 I am self-employed and work has really fallen away because of the Coronavirus restrictions. I claimed for the first four Self-Employment Income Support Scheme payments and heard that there is some additional help now available from the Scheme. What’s the latest?


The Government has announced a further grant under the Self-Employment Income Support Scheme for the period May 2021 to September 2021 will be open to claims from late July 2021. The grant is taxable and will be paid out in a single instalment.


To be eligible for the grant you must be a self-employed individual or a member of a partnership, and you must have traded in the tax years 2019 to 2020 and submitted your tax return on or before 2 March 2021, and 2020 to 2021


You must either be currently trading but are impacted by reduced demand due to coronavirus, or have been trading but are temporarily unable to do so due to coronavirus


To work out your eligibility for the fifth grant,


  • HMRC will firstly look at your 2019 to 2020 Self Assessment tax return. Your trading profits must be no more than £50,000 and at least equal to your non-trading income.


  • If you’re not eligible based on your 2019 to 2020 tax return, HMRC will then look at the tax years 2016 to 2017, 2017 to 2018, 2018 to 2019 and 2019 to 2020.


You must declare that:


  • you intend to continue to trade
  • you reasonably believe there will be a significant reduction in your trading profits due to reduced business activity, capacity, demand or inability to trade due to coronavirus from May 2021 to September 2021


You must keep evidence that shows how your business has been impacted by coronavirus resulting in less business activity than otherwise expected.


HMRC expects you to make an honest assessment about whether you reasonably believe your business will have a significant reduction in profits.


The amount of the fifth grant will be determined by how much your turnover has been reduced in the year April 2020 to April 2021, as follows:


Turnover reduction     How much you’ll getMaximum grant
30% or more80% of 3 months’ average trading profits£7,500
less than 30%30% of 3 months’ average trading profits£2,850


If you’re eligible based on your tax returns, HMRC will contact you in mid-July 2021 to give you a date that you can make your claim from. The online claims service for the fifth grant will be available from late July 2021.


Further more information and advice is available at: GOV.UK


Watch out for our advice column next week when we focus on the ending of the ban on evictions.


The information contained in these articles does not constitute advice. Citizens Advice Exeter and The Express and Echo accept no liability for the information published. Citizens Advice Exeter is unable to respond to individual requests for advice through these columns. Copyright Citizens Advice. For the most up-to-date information, please visit