Guidance

How different circumstances affect the Self-Employment Income Support Scheme

If you're self-employed or member of a partnership find out how your circumstances can affect your eligibility for the scheme.

The Self-Employment Income Support Scheme currently allows you to claim a taxable grant worth 80% of your average monthly trading profits, paid out in a single instalment covering 3 months’ worth of profits, and capped at £7,500 in total.

But if you have different circumstances it can affect your eligibility.

If your tax return is late, amended or under enquiry

If you did not submit your Self Assessment tax return for the tax year 2018 to 2019 on or before 23 April 2020 you will not be able to claim. Claims based on late returns submitted between 26 March 2020 and 23 April 2020 will be subject to additional anti-fraud checks by HMRC.

When working out your eligibility or amount of the grant HMRC will not take into account Self Assessment tax returns for the tax years 2016 to 2017 or 2017 to 2018 if they are submitted after 23 April 2020.

HMRC will use data on the tax returns already submitted to identify those eligible to claim.

When working out your eligibility or amount of the grant we will not take into account any changes made to submitted returns after 6pm on 26 March 2020.

We will also only use the information in your original return if your tax return:

  • is under enquiry
  • has been the subject of a contract settlement

If you’re a member of a partnership

Each partner in your partnership will need to make a claim based on their own circumstances.

We will work out your eligibility based on your share of the partnership’s trading profits.

If the partnership rules require the grant to be paid into the partnership pot, the partnership should give the full grant back to you.

Example of how we work out your partnership eligibility.

If you’re on or took parental leave

If you’re self-employed but when you apply are taking a break from your trade because of a new baby or adoption, or have done since 6 April 2019, you may still be eligible because HMRC will treat you as still trading.

If you claim Maternity Allowance this will not affect your eligibility for the grant.

If you have loans covered by the loan charge and have not agreed a settlement with HMRC before 20 December 2019

If you have received payment for work or services in the form of a loan or other form of credit covered by the loan charge, you may be able to claim the grant if you were self-employed in the tax year 2017 to 2018 and have submitted your Self Assessment tax return for that year.

This also applies if your loans will be removed from the loan charge because of the changes announced by the government following the loan charge independent review.

HMRC will work out your eligibility and average trading profits based on either:

  • the average of the tax years 2016 to 2017 and 2017 to 2018
  • the tax year 2017 to 2018 if you were not self-employed in the tax year 2016 to 2017

You also did not have to file your 2018 to 2019 Self Assessment tax return by 23 April 2020. You should file by 30 September 2020.

If you claim averaging relief

If you’re a self-employed farmer or market gardener, or creative author or artist HMRC will use the amount of profit before the impact of the averaging claims to work out:

  • if you can claim the grant
  • how much grant you will receive

State aid

The Self-Employment Income Support Scheme is a state aid granted under the European Commission’s Temporary Framework (section 3.10), designed to respond to coronavirus (COVID-19).

The aid must be granted no later than 31 December 2020.

If you’re non-resident or chose the remittance basis

You may be eligible for the grant if you’re self-employed and are either:

You must confirm to HMRC one of the following:

  • your UK trading profits in the tax year 2018 to 2019 are no more than £50,000 and are at least equal to your other worldwide income in that tax year
  • if you traded in the tax years 2016 to 2017, 2017 to 2018 and 2018 to 2019, your average UK trading profit in those tax years is no more than £50,000 and the sum of those trading profits is at least equal to the sum of your other worldwide income in those tax years
  • if you traded in the tax years 2017 to 2018 and 2018 to 2019 (but not 2016 to 2017), your average UK trading profit in the tax years 2017 to 2018 and 2018 to 2019 is no more than £50,000 and the sum of those trading profits is at least equal to the sum of your other worldwide income in those tax years

If you did not trade in the tax year 2017 to 2018, we’ll base your eligibility on the tax year 2018 to 2019.

If you’re non-resident or chose the remittance basis and are subject to the loan charge you must confirm to HMRC either:

  • if you traded in the 2016 to 2017 and 2017 to 2018 your average UK trading profit for those tax years is no more than £50,000 and the sum of those trading profits is at least equal to the sum of your other worldwide income in those tax years
  • if you did not trade in the tax year 2016 to 2017, your UK trading profits for the tax year 2017 to 2018 are no more than £50,000 and are at least equal to your other worldwide income in that tax year
Published 1 May 2020
Last updated 15 May 2020 + show all updates
  1. A Welsh version of the page has been added.

  2. More information has been added about what you must confirm to HMRC if you’re non-resident or have chosen the remittance basis.

  3. First published.