Editor, IFSEC Global

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James Moore is the Editor of IFSEC Global, the leading resource for security and fire news in the industry. James was previously Editor of Professional Heating & Plumbing Installer magazine.
March 27, 2020

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Self-employed support

Update on self-employed support during coronavirus pandemic

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On 26th March, Rishi Sunak announced a range of measures from the Government to support the self-employed. This came after numerous petitions (see below) and calls were made that there was a lack of initial support for the five-million self-employed workers in the UK.

Help for those affected by the impact of coronavirus comes in the form of the Coronavirus Self-employment Income Support Scheme – a taxable grant worth 80% of a person’s profits up to a cap of £2,500 per month. For eligibility purposes, more than half of an individual’s income must come from self-employment and the scheme is only open to those with an average trading profit of £50,000 or less. This help comes on top of a six-month delay for tax payments through the self-assessment system.

The payment is available for three months, and will reportedly be made in one lump sum from the beginning of June. Unfortunately, those who are recently self-employed (i.e. set up since April 2019 onwards), will not receive any support from the scheme, as HMRC will not have any records of their status.

Full details can be found on the BBC’s page: What help will self-employed get from government.


Due to a lack of clarity and proposed support initially being offered by the UK Government, a number of petitions were put together to highlight those workers in self-employed or freelance status.

Whilst the Government had announced it would  pay 80% of salaries of staff to ensure they’re kept on by employers, there had remained around five million self-employed workers who were left in the dark of the support available for their circumstances, before the Chancellor’s announcement on 26th March – that is not to say the Government’s announcement detailed above covers everyone and all scenarios.

The two petitions that garnered most interest are below:

Include self-employed in Statutory Sick Pay during coronavirus

Self-employed to access full pay through HMRC earnings through this crisis

If you, or anyone you know in the sector, is being affected by the impact of the coronavirus, please feel free to leave your comments below. 

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