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BARWELL'S BANTER: Businesses and the budget

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Following on from the Budget presented by the Chancellor on Wednesday, March 3, this week we start looking at some of the issues relating to businesses.

Business Rates

Those businesses eligible in the retail, leisure and hospitality sectors were given 100% business rate relief for the year ending March 31.

Chancellor Rishi Sunak.
Chancellor Rishi Sunak.

The Government has announced an extension of the 100% relief for eligible businesses until June 30. This will be followed by a 66% reduction in rates for the period July 1, 2021 to March 31, 2022.

There is a cap of £2m per business for properties required to close on January 5 or £105,000 for other eligible properties.

Coronavirus loans

During the pandemic, a number of government-guaranteed loan schemes were introduced, including the Coronavirus Business Interruption Loan Scheme and the Bounce Back Loan Scheme.

These schemes ended on March 31 and the Recovery Loan Scheme replaced them from April 6.

The Government has pledged an 80% guarantee to lenders on eligible loans between £25,000 and £10million.

All businesses will be able to apply, even if they have already received financial support from coronavirus-guaranteed loan schemes. The new scheme is open until December 31.

Restart grants

Grants of up to £6,000 per premises for non-essential retail businesses and up to £18,000 per premises for hospitality, accommodation, leisure, personal care and gyms will be available.

These grants are aimed at allowing businesses to re-launch trading over the following months.

Self-employed income support scheme (SEISS)

The Chancellor confirmed that a fourth SEISS grant will be payable for the period February to April and will be worth up to 80% of three months trading profits averaged out, capped at £7,500 and paid out in a single amount.

To be eligible, self-employed claimants must have filed a 2019/20 tax return by midnight on March 2.

The final SEISS grant covering the period May to September can be claimed from late July. This grant will be subject to turnover criteria.

Those individuals that have seen their business turnover fall by 30% or more will be eligible for a grant worth 80% of three months of trading profits, averaged and capped at £7,500.

Individuals with a fall in business turnover of less than 30% will receive a 30% grant capped at £2,850.

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