COVID-19 Statutory Self-Employment Pay Scheme

On 26 March 2020, the Chancellor announced the following new measures to help self-employed businesses through the current Coronavirus pandemic. The scheme is intended to allow those individuals who are self-employed claim a taxable grant of up to 80% of their trading profits up to a maximum of £2,500 per month for the next three months.

The scheme will be extended if necessary.

Who can apply?

The scheme is open to both self-employed individuals and members of a partnership if:

  • The Income Tax Self-Assessment tax return for the tax year 2018/19 has been submitted, or you will submit your return by 23 April 2020.
  • Have traded in the tax year 2019/20,
  • Are trading when you apply, or would be except for COVID-19
  • Intend to continue to trade in the tax year 2020/21 (so not planning to or have already ceased during 2019/20).
  • Trading/partnership trading profits have been lost due to COVID-19
  • Trading profits/partnership entitlement must be less than £50,000.

Additionally, more than half of your income come from self-employment.

At least one of the following conditions being true:

  • Your trading profits/partnership trading profits in 2018/19 was less than £50,000 and these profits constitute more than half of your total taxable income.


  • Your average trading profits in 2016/17, 2017/18, and 2018/19 are less than £50,000 and these profits constitute more than half of your average taxable income in the same period

If you started trading between the years 2016 to 2019, HMRC will only use those years for which you filed a Self-Assessment tax return.

If you have not submitted your Income Tax Self-Assessment tax return for the tax year 2018/19, you must do this by 23 April 2020.

How to apply and after You apply

HMRC will use data on 2018-19 returns already submitted to identify those eligible and will risk assess any late returns filed before the 23 April 2020 deadline in the usual way.

HMRC will contact those eligible for the scheme directly and ask qualifying individuals to complete a simple online form and the grant will be paid directly into their bank account.

This information is based on the self-employed positions for the 2018/19 tax year. It is therefore necessary to have submitted the self-employment/partnership tax returns for 2018/19.

For those who missed the 31 January 2020 return deadline there is now a 4-week period in which to file one.

The scheme is not currently open to those individuals who have commenced trading post 6 April 2019.

The scheme is expected to commencing paying out in June 2020. The grant will be paid directly into your bank account, in one installment.

The scheme may be extended if necessary.

How can Vantage help?

We will keep reviewing the daily release of information from the Government and continue to update our website, social media platforms and our newsletter service with any and all developments on this issue.

Our tax and VAT advice lines remain open between 8.30am to 5.30pm for any other help you may need. Call 0116 243 7892 and quote your QACC reference number.