Over the weekend it was announced that England will be plunged into another lockdown, though with a few less restrictions than the first. Many businesses are being ordered to close including:

  • Non-essential retail
  • Hospitality
  • Indoor and outdoor leisure and sports facilities
  • Entertainment venues
  • Personal care facilities
  • Places of worship (except for some exemptions such as funerals and individual prayer)

To provide continuing support for businesses affected by these restrictions, the government has delayed the start of the job support scheme and the coronavirus job retentions scheme will continue while these further restrictions are in place to early December, but at a more generous level than currently given for October.

Extended Coronavirus Job Retention Scheme (Furlough Scheme)

During the new lockdown, businesses will have the flexibility to have staff part-time furloughed or if required place them back on full furlough. Employers will only have to contribute the national insurance and employers pension contributions, meaning the level of grant received will be calculated on the same basis as the month of August. Employees will receive 80% of their wages, and employers can top up if they wish.

For an employee to be eligible for the scheme, they must have been included on an RTI submission on or before 30th October 2020. This means new employees can be added to the scheme.

Business Grants

Business that are required to close due to the new restrictions will be eligible for cash grants at the following rates:

  • For properties with a rateable value of £15k or under, grants of £1,334 per month
  • For properties with a rateable value of between £15k-£51k grants of £2,000 per month
  • For properties with a rateable value of £51k or over grants to be £3,000 per month

For the devolved nations funds have been provided, which they could use to set up similar schemes.

Mortgage Holidays

Mortgage holidays were set to come to an end on 31 October 2020. However they have been extended and borrowers who have not yet had a mortgage holiday will be entitled to a six month holiday. Those currently taking a mortgage holiday will be able to have this for 6 months in total, without it effecting their credit file.

Self-Employed Income Support Scheme

Throughout the pandemic the government has maintained parity between those employed and the self-employed. However, no announcements were made for an increase to the self-employed income support scheme.

As more detail becomes available on all of the above we will keep you updated.

If you have any questions in relation to the above or other issues facing your business, please get in touch, we are only a phone call away.

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