Use this page to navigate the guidance on the virus for people in Scotland.
Social distancing rules and guidelines for people and businesses in Scotland are set by the Scottish Government.
The Scottish Government has now announced Phase 3 of its route map through and out of the crisis.
Individuals and families
Any person who has symptoms of COVID-19 - that is a cough, a temperature or loss of taste or smell - should take immediate steps to book a test.
If this applies to you, please go straight to nhsinform.scot to get a test or, if you can’t go online, call NHS 24 on 0800 028 2816. Don’t wait to see if you feel better before booking a test, and all people in your household should self-isolate.
The Scottish Government has published Vitamin D advice for all age groups.
Staying safe and physical distancing
Read the Scottish Government’s information on staying safe and protecting others through physical distancing for people in Scotland.
People must by law wear a face covering in shops and on public transport and public transport premises such as railway and bus stations and airports.
Scotland’s route map through and out of the crisis
The Scottish Government have published a coronavirus framework for decision making. It gives an indication of the order in which Scotland will seek to change restrictions.
Guidance for employees
Read all the latest guidance for employees including details about working safely, working from home, childcare, holiday and sick leave, and getting financial help if you are not working or working less.
Find out all the latest international travel advice and sign up for travel alerts via the Foreign and Commonwealth (FCO) website. People are advised not to travel abroad unless it is essential. Some countries are exempt from this advice.
The Scottish Government has coronavirus advice for parents on its ParentClub website.
- The Ready Scotland website has advice from the Scottish Government on volunteering and how to support others in your community
- Read about support for victims of domestic abuse
Businesses in Scotland may be eligible for support from both the UK and Scottish governments.
Physical distancing for businesses
The Scottish Government has published guidance for businesses in Scotland on physical distancing.
UK Government support for businesses
The UK Government has set out a Winter Economy Plan of measures to protect public services, people and businesses through this period of disruption caused by COVID-19.
Businesses in Scotland could be eligible to benefit from the following schemes and announcements:
- Support for businesses through deferring VAT and Income Tax payments
- A 15% VAT cut for the tourism and hospitality sectors has been extended to the end of March 2021.
- Support for businesses struggling to pay tax
- The Coronavirus Job Retention Scheme has supported more than 779,000 workers in Scotland.
From November 1st 2020 the UK Government will be introducing a new Job Support Scheme.
Employees will need to work a minimum of 33% of their usual hours. For every hour not worked the employer and the government will each pay one third of the employee’s usual pay, and the government contribution will be capped at £697.92 per month.
Employees using the scheme will receive at least 77% of their pay, where the government contribution has not been capped. The employer will be reimbursed in arrears for the government contribution. The employee must not be on a redundancy notice.
The scheme will run for six months from 1 November 2020 and is open to all employers with a UK bank account and a UK PAYE scheme. All Small and Medium-Sized Enterprises (SMEs) will be eligible; large businesses will be required to demonstrate that their business has been adversely affected by COVID-19, and the government expects that large employers will not be making capital distributions (such as dividends), while using the scheme.
Support for the self-employed:
More than 150,000 people in Scotland have benefited from the Self-Employed Income Support Scheme.
From November 2020 to April 2021 the SEISS Grant Extension will provide critical support to the self-employed. The grant will be limited to self-employed individuals who are eligible for the SEISS and are actively continuing to trade but are facing reduced demand due to COVID-19. The scheme will last for 6 months, .
The extension will be in the form of two taxable grants. The first grant will cover a three-month period from the start of November until the end of January. This initial grant will cover 20% of average monthly trading profits, paid out in a single instalment covering 3 months’ worth of profits, and capped at £1,875 in total. The second grant will cover a three-month period from the start of February until the end of April. The government will review the level of the second grant and set this in due course.
Enhanced Time to Pay for Self-Assessment taxpayers – The government will give the self-employed and other taxpayers more time to pay taxes due in January 2021, building on the Self-Assessment deferral provided in July 2020. Taxpayers with up to £30,000 of Self-Assessment liabilities due will be able to use HMRC’s self-service Time to Pay facility to secure a plan to pay over an additional 12 months
Support for small and medium sized businesses:
- Support for businesses through the Coronavirus Business Interruption Loan Scheme via the British Business Bank. The scheme will deliver loans of up to £5 million for eligible businesses and is interest free for 12 months and is open until 30 November.
- The Bounce Back Loan scheme will help small and medium-sized businesses to borrow between £2,000 and £50,000. The UK Government will guarantee 100% of the loan and there won’t be any fees or interest to pay for the first 12 months
- UK-based start-ups and scale-ups can apply for the Future Fund, delivered in partnership with the British Business Bank. Eligible companies can apply for a convertible loan of between £125,000 and £5 million to support their continued growth and innovation and the Fund will be open until 30 November 2020.
- Small businesses and employers across the UK who have paid statutory sick pay to staff taking coronavirus-related leave can claim back the money
Support for larger businesses:
- The Coronavirus Large Business Interruption Loan Scheme (CLBILS) will provide a government guarantee of 80% to enable banks to make loans of up to £25m to firms with an annual turnover of between £45m and £500m.
- The Bank of England COVID-19 Corporate Financing Facility is designed to support liquidity among larger firms, helping them to bridge coronavirus disruption to their cash flows through the purchase of short-term debt in the form of commercial paper.
Scottish Government support for businesses
The Scottish Government has a summary of their support available to businesses in Scotland. Scottish Government coronavirus business support and advice is also available at the Find Business Support website.
Business support helplines
HMRC tax helpline
HMRC has set up a helpline for businesses and self-employed people who are concerned about paying their tax due to COVID-19.
Call 08000 241222 for help and advice.
Monday to Friday, 8am to 4pm
Scottish Government helpline
If you run a business in Scotland you can also get advice by calling the Scottish Government’s helpline: 0300 303 0660. It is open Monday to Friday, 8.30am to 5.30pm. Select option 1 to speak to the COVID-19 team.