The Minister for the Economy has recently announced new support measures that are designed to assist those individuals that have not met the eligibility criteria for existing support. Specifically, this relates to newly self employed individuals that missed out on the Self Employed Income Support Scheme and Limited Company Directors who were not eligible for furlough.
The Newly Self-Employed Support Scheme (NSESS) is an initial one-off taxable grant of £3,500 that is available to newly self-employed individuals that meet the relevant criteria. The scheme is open to sole traders or individual members of a partnership business operating in Northern Ireland. To be eligible individuals must demonstrate that they meet the following criteria:
• Commenced trading as self-employed between 6 April 2019 and 5 April 2020.
• Were trading at 1 March 2020 (prior to the COVID-19 pandemic).
• Have either been temporarily unable to trade or are currently trading but impacted by reduced demand, due to the COVID-19 pandemic.
• Over 50% of income in 2019/20 was from self-employment.
• 2019/20 trading profits were less than £50,000.
• Have experienced at least a 40% decline in trading profits between 1 March and 30 November 2020.
• Intend to continue to trade as a sole trader or individual member of the partnership.
Full details and the link for applications are HERE
Note that the closing time for applications is 6pm on Friday 5 February 2021.
The Limited Company Director’s Support Scheme (LCDSS) will provide an initial one-off taxable grant of £3,500 to eligible company directors who meet the relevant criteria. Only one application is allowed per person, even where that individual holds multiple directorships. To be eligible for the scheme the Director must meet all of the following criteria:
• Resident of Northern Ireland.
• A Person with Significant Control (PSC) for the company listed in the application (in most circumstances this means holding 25% or more of the shares in the company).
• They must work in the company named in the application.
• At 31 March 2020 (prior to COVID-19) at least 50% of the director’s income came from remuneration and dividends from the company. If the individual is a director of more than one company then the remuneration and dividends from all companies must represent at least 50% of total income.
• Projected remuneration and dividends from the company for the 2020/21 financial year is 40% lower than it would have been in the absence of coronavirus. If applicable, this should include any furloughed income received.
• Total projected taxable income for 2020/21 is less than £50k.
The company/companies in which the individual is an eligible director must:
• Be currently trading but impacted by reduced demand due to coronavirus, or previously trading but temporarily unable to due to coronavirus.
• Be based and operating in Northern Ireland.
• Have been trading at 1 March 2020 (i.e. prior to the COVID-19 pandemic).
• Intend to continue trading. Directors who are also eligible for the NSESS cannot apply.
The Scheme opened for applications at 6pm on Thursday 21 January 2021 and closes at 6pm on Thursday 18 February.
Full details and a link to the application page can be found HERE
To discuss how the measures that the government has introduced apply to your business and how we can help you to access support please get in touch with your usual GMcG contact.