Guidance

Coronavirus (COVID-19): what to do if you’re self-employed and getting less work or no work

Guidance for people who are self-employed and getting less work or no work because of coronavirus (COVID-19).

Claim a grant if you’ve lost income

If you’re getting less work or no work because of coronavirus (COVID-19), you might be able to claim a grant through the coronavirus Self-employment Income Support Scheme.

Other financial support

If you’re getting less work or no work because of coronavirus (COVID-19), you can also:

You might also be able to get New Style Employment and Support Allowance if one of the following applies to you or your child, now or some time in the past:

  • you’re at high risk because you have an underlying health condition (shielding)
  • you’re self-isolating because you have symptoms of coronavirus
  • you’re self-isolating because you came into contact with someone who has symptoms of coronavirus, or you were told to self-isolate by a test and trace service

Interviews and assessments will be done by telephone. You should not go to a Jobcentre Plus unless asked to do so for an exceptional purpose, for example to collect your Payment Exception Service vouchers.

Your Universal Credit payment is based on your actual earnings. You need to report any self-employed earnings and expenses at the end of each monthly assessment period.

Processing your application

Because of coronavirus (COVID-19), it might take longer than usual to process your application and answer questions about it. We apologise for these delays – we know this is a difficult time.

Advance payments

If you do not have enough money to live on while you wait for your first Universal Credit payment you can ask for an advance payment.

If you cannot make a Self Assessment payment on account

If you are due to make a Self Assessment payment on account by 31 July 2020, you can put off your payment until January 2021.

Looking for other work

Find full or part-time jobs in England, Scotland and Wales using the Find a job service. There is a different service to search for jobs in Northern Ireland.

Published 8 April 2020
Last updated 2 July 2020 + show all updates
  1. Added that interviews and assessments will be done by telephone. You should only go to a jobcentre when asked to do so.

  2. Added more information about who might be able to get New Style Employment and Support Allowance because of coronavirus.

  3. First published.