On 11th March 2020, the Government announced its new Budget for the UK. The Budget contained important changes which could affect small businesses, including relief for the coronavirus outbreak and tax changes. Read on to find out the important changes that small businesses should be aware of in the Budget.
Measures to combat the financial impact from the virus featured heavily in the Budget.
Statutory Sick Pay (SSP) will be extended to those employees who are required to self isolate, even when not showing any symptoms. Companies with fewer than 250 employees will be able to reclaim a maximum of two weeks SSP per employee from the Government. A sick note from a GP will not be required in order to receive this benefit.
The Government will also introduce a Coronavirus Business Interruption Loan Scheme. This will allow businesses to access loans of up to £1.2 million to help them cope during the outbreak. The Government will guarantee 80% of each loan at no charge to businesses or banks, subject to a per-lender cap.
The Government has introduced changes to the Business Rates and is introducing discounts for certain sectors. Businesses in the retail, leisure and hospitality sector with a rateable value of under £51,000 will pay no business rates at all for the 2020-21 tax year in response to the COVID-19 pandemic. This will help small businesses who are experiencing difficulty during this time.
The Government has also recognised that many small businesses already pay little or no business rates because of Small Business Rate Relief (SBRR). Therefore, the Government has stated that they will provide a grant of £3,000 to businesses that already enjoy SBRR.
In a bid to ease employers’ National Insurance bill, the Government have also increased the Employment Allowance from £3,000 to £4,000. This means employers who paid less than £100,000 Class 1 National Insurance in the previous tax year, can get £4,000 off their Class 1 National Insurance this tax year.
It is evident from these measures that the Government is looking to help small businesses grow in the UK. This Budget also demonstrates that the Government is not taking the potential impact of the coronavirus lightly. Understanding and benefitting from these changes will be crucial for any small business looking to establish themselves in the UK.
If you would like to learn more visit Budget 2020.
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