Covid19

NWAA has set up this COVID-19 page to support its members and partners. NWAA will be posting useful links and information from BEIS and the local authority each day.

Please feel free to get in touch with Sharon McDonald (sharon.mcdonald@aerospace.co.uk) or Claire Lambert (claire.lambert@aerospace.co.uk) if you wish to arrange a call to discuss how NWAA can support your business at this difficult time. 

Stay Safe!

Coronavirus (COVID-19) – Businesses and Employers Bulletin from BEIS. These bulletins beloe are issued by the Department for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy and provides information for employers and businesses on Coronavirus (COVID-19).

Coronavirus (COVID-19) Businesses and Employers Bulletin - 26 November 2020

Health Secretary, Matt Hancock, sets out England’s new coronavirus tier system

The full list of local restriction tiers by area from Wednesday 2 December 2020 is available here

Decisions on which area goes into which tier are primarily based on 5 key epidemiological indicators: case detection rates in all age groups; case detection rates in the over-60s; the rate at which cases are rising or falling; positivity rate, and; pressure on the NHS, including current and projected occupancy.  

The changes to the tiers are as follows: 

  • in tier 1, the government will reinforce the importance that, where people can work from home, they should do so 
  • in tier 2, hospitality settings that serve alcohol must close, unless operating as restaurants. Hospitality venues can only serve alcohol with substantial meals 
  • in tier 3, hospitality will close except for delivery, drive-through and takeaway, hotels and other accommodation providers must close (except for specific exemptions, such as people staying for work purposes, where people are attending a funeral, or where they cannot return home) and indoor entertainment venues such as cinemas, theatres and bowling allies must also close. Elite sport will be played without spectators. Organised outdoor sport can resume, but the Government will advise against higher risk contact sports 

Find out more information on tiers, including information for businesses and venues. The government will review the allocations every 14 days, with the first review complete by the end of 16 December. 

Spending Review to fight virus, and invest in UK’s recovery

Yesterday, 25 November 2020, the Chancellor of the Exchequer announced the spending review. The government will provide billions of pounds in the fight against coronavirus, and invest in the UK’s recovery. Headlines for businesses are: 

  • National Infrastructure Strategy: The £4bn Levelling Up Fund, to transform the UK’s infrastructure network, is based around three objectives: economic recovery; levelling up and strengthening the Union; and meeting the UK’s net zero emissions target by 2050. This will be enabled by clear support for private investment and through a comprehensive set of reforms to the way infrastructure is delivered. 
  • Business rates multiplier: The business rates multiplier will be frozen in 2021-22, saving businesses in England £575 million over the next five years. 
  • Prime Minister’s Lifetime Skills Guarantee: £375m skills package to help adults without A-Level or equivalent qualifications access free, fully funded further education courses. 
  • Kickstart Scheme: £1.6bn for the Kickstart scheme which is designed to help young people (16 – 24 year olds) claiming universal credit find work placements. 
  • Restart Scheme: £2.9bn for the three year Restart Scheme, to help more than one million people who have been unemployed for over a year, find new work. 
  • National Living Wage: The National Living wage is being increased by 2.2%, to £8.91 an hour. This rate is being extended to those aged 23 and over. 

To view the chancellor’s speech, click here, and for further details on the spending review, click here

The UK Transition: Time is Running Out

With just 36 days to go until the UK’s new start: 

Watch  sector specific webinars  on demand here 

For the latest transition information direct to your inbox, sign up to the Transition Readiness Business Bulletin here.

New Guidance

UK-wide Christmas arrangements agreed by the UK Government and the Devolved Administrations: The joint arrangements for an easing of social restriction that will allow friends and loved ones to reunite over the Christmas period is here. Each Christmas bubble can meet at home, at a place of worship or an outdoor public place, but existing, more restrictive rules on hospitality and meeting in other venues will be maintained throughout this period. 

How your trading conditions affect your eligibility for the Self-Employment Income Support Scheme: This guide applies to businesses if they have been impacted by reduced demand, activity, or capacity due to coronavirus.

Find out what we mean by reduced demand or temporary closure – and read examples of how this could affect business eligibility here

Updated Guidance 

Check if you can claim a grant through the Self-Employment Income Support Scheme: This page has been updated with information for the third grant of the Self-Employed Income Support Scheme. If you are self-employed or a member of a partnership and have been impacted by coronavirus, find out if you can use this scheme to claim a grant here 

Claim a grant through the Self-Employment Income Support Scheme: You must make your claim between 30 November 2020 and 29 January 2021. If you are eligible to claim for the third grant of the Self-Employed Income Support Scheme, check for updated information. 

How HMRC works out trading profits and non-trading income for the Self-Employment Income Support Scheme: Find out how HMRC will work out your trading profits and non-trading income if you are self-employed or a member of a partnership and have been impacted by coronavirus here 

How your circumstances affect eligibility for the Self-Employment Income Support Scheme: Find out examples of how your circumstances can affect your eligibility for the scheme here 

Working safely during Coronavirus -Find out how to make your workplace COVID-secure: Check the 14 guides to determine which one affects your type of work here 

Travel

Testing to release” for international travel: minimum standards for testing: This updated guidance is for private providers of ‘Testing to Release for International Travel’. From 15 December, international arrivals will be able to opt-in to ‘Testing to Release’ Click to check for the minimum standard 

 


Coronavirus (COVID-19) Businesses and Employers Bulletin - 24 November 2020

PM's statement on the Government's winter Covid-19 Plan

The Prime Minister, The Rt Hon Boris Johnson gave a statement to the House of Commons on Monday 23 November 2020 outlining the Government’s winter Covid-19 plan. The COVID-19 Winter Plan sets out how national restrictions will be lifted in England on 2 December, with England moving back into a regional, tiered approach.  

On 2 December, across all of England, regardless of tier: 

  • the stay-at-home requirement will end, with travel being permitted again subject to guidance in each tier 
  • shops, personal care, gyms and the wider leisure sector will reopen 
  • collective worship, weddings and outdoor sports can resume 
  • people will no longer be limited to seeing only one other person in outdoor public spaces - the rule of 6 will now apply outdoors as it did in the previous set of tiers. 

Everyone who can work from home should do so. Where people cannot do so – including, but not limited to, people who work in critical national infrastructure, construction, or manufacturing – they should continue to travel to their workplace. 

A summary of local restrictions, including what you can and cannot do in each tier, is available here, including information for businesses and venues.  

On Thursday 26 November the government will announce which areas are in which tier. The new rules will come into effect from the beginning of Wednesday 2 December. 

The PM's statement can be found here. Winter Plan summary is here.  

Tier Posters- Medium, High and very High: For a series of posters displaying information about the various tiers of restrictions in England from 2 December 2020 click posters 

New Guidance

Local restriction tiers: What you need to know: Guidance that sets out the local restriction tier system that will be in place from Wednesday 2 December, including what you can and cannot do in each tier is available here

Homecare workers to be tested weekly: Care workers looking after people in their own homes will be offered weekly coronavirus tests. Care providers will be able to book tests for their staff online from Monday 23 November. Agency managers should order tests every 28 days for their homecare workers; 4 tests are delivered for each homecare worker to the agency, for a 28-day testing cycle. More information on the testing service, click here

Pay VAT deferred: You can pay now or get ready to opt in to the VAT deferral new payment scheme. If you deferred VAT between 20 March and 30 June 2020 and still have payments to make, you can: 

  • pay the deferred VAT in full on or before 31 March 2021; 
  • opt in to the VAT deferral new payment scheme when it launches in 2021; 
  • contact HMRC if you need more help to pay. 

Check how you can pay your deferred VAT

If you want to opt in to the new payment scheme: You cannot opt in yet. The online opt in process will be available in early 2021. You must opt in yourself; your agent cannot do this for you. 

Instead of paying the full amount by the end of March 2021, you can make up to 11 smaller monthly instalments, interest free. All instalments must be paid by the end of March 2022. For more on the opt in paying system check here 

Consensus statement emphasises importance of covid-19-secure workplace: Public Health England (PHE), Health and Safety Executive (HSE) and Faculty of Occupational Medicine (FOM) have issued a consensus statement on the best approach to reduce occupational risk for workers including those of ethnic minority groups. Further details here

The UK Transition: Time is Running Out

With just 38 days to go until the UK’s new start, attend one of our webinars to help prepare your business.

  • Business travel and investing or establishing in the EU - 11am, Wednesday 25 November, and then on demand - register here.

Watch other sector specific webinars on demand here and register for all transition webinars here.

For the latest transition information direct to your inbox, sign up to the Transition Readiness Business Bulletin here.

Updated Guidance

Adult social care Guidance: Sets out how homecare agencies in England can order regular tests for their homecare (domiciliary care) staff. All registered homecare agencies will be contacted with details of how to apply for test kits for their carers. More information is available here. Quick summary of the guidance is here 

Open consultation: Stopping movement of staff between care settings: Easy-read version of consultation is now made available here. If you are using the easy-read version, the deadline for responding is now midday on Wednesday 25 November 2020. 

MHRA Advice for developers of Covid-19 Vaccines: MHRA have added link to guidance on ‘Advice for developers of Covid-19 vaccines’ in the ‘vaccines and vaccine safety’ section. See the updated guidance here 

Travel

Countries, territories or regions added to the travel corridor list 

  • If you arrive in England from Bonaire / St Eustatius / Saba, Israel, Jerusalem, Namibia, Northern Mariana Islands, Rwanda, Sri Lanka and Uruguay and the US Virgin Islands after 4am Saturday 21 November, you may not need to self-isolate read the rules about when you need to self-isolate and for how long 
  • If you arrived in England from Bonaire / St Eustatius / Saba, Israel, Jerusalem, Namibia, Northern Mariana Islands, Rwanda, Sri Lanka and Uruguay and the US Virgin Islands before 4am Saturday 21 November, you will need to self-isolate. Read how to self-isolate when you travel to the UK.  

Test to Release: England introduces testing strategy for international arrivals: Testing strategy for passengers arriving into England will be introduced from 15 December 2020. 

  • Tests will be at the cost of the traveller to protect the capacity of NHS Test and Trace. 
  • 14-day self-isolation period reduced by up to two thirds on receipt of a negative COVID-19 test from a private provider after 5 days of isolation 

For more information on the strategy click here  

Other useful links

Some aspects of business support are devolved. Specific information for businesses and employers in Northern Ireland, Scotland and Wales is available. In England, Growth Hubs can advise on local and UK Government business support. You can also find helpful business case studies and other useful information on the Coronavirus Business Support Blog.

 


The Chancellor of the Exchequer's Plan for Jobs
Coronavirus (COVID-19) Businesses and Employers Bulletin - 19 November 2020

Plan for Jobs: Skills incentives for employers: As part of the Chancellor’s Plan for Jobs there are a range skills programmes, some of which offer financial incentives, that are available for employers who are considering hiring employees or offering work experience. If your business is looking to potentially:

  • Develop the talent pool in your business or develop a motivated, skilled and qualified workforce
  • Build a pipeline of talent for junior positions
  • Test out if someone is right for permanent job or apprenticeship with you
  • Carry out a skill needs analysis for your business to understand gaps and find solutions
  • Find a flexible programme that can be tailored to meet your recruitment needs
  • Find more flexible ways to offer a work placement

Then one of these programmes might be right for your business.

These incentives can help you to invest in your business, help people upskill and improve their chances of securing a good job in a highly competitive labour market giving your business an edge to support your overall goals.  

To learn more about the variety of offers available and how to apply please visit GOV.UK.

Letters to the construction and manufacturing sectors

Secretary of State for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy, Alok Sharma, has written to those working in the construction sector and its supply chain and those in the manufacturing industry and its supply chain. The letters emphasise that the sectors can and should continue to work during the current period of restrictions and follow government guidance on safe working.

New Guidance

Income Tax and National Insurance contributions exemption for employer-provided Coronavirus antigen tests: The government is committed to supporting businesses and individuals through the Coronavirus pandemic, and this measure aims to make sure the use of relevant antigen testing procedures by employers are not subject to a tax charge. Find out more here.

Open consultation: Stopping movement of staff between care settings: We want your views on plans to minimise the risk of Coronavirus infections, by making residential and nursing care home providers restrict the movement of care staff. Consultation closes at midday on 23 November 2020. For more on the consultation and how to respond, click here.

Taxis and Private Hire Vehicles: New guidance on the actions that drivers, operators and owners of taxis or private hire vehicles (PHVs) can take to protect against Coronavirus – including information on how drivers can carry out risk assessment, picking up passengers, preparing your vehicle for the next passenger. For more information click here.

The UK Transition: Time is Running Out

With just 43 days to go until the UK’s new start, attend one of our webinars to help prepare your business.

  • Business travel and investing or establishing in the EU - 11am, Wednesday 25 November, and then on demand - register here.

Watch other sector specific webinars on demand here and register for all transition webinars here.

For the latest transition information direct to your inbox, sign up to the Transition Readiness Business Bulletin here.

Updated Guidance

Guidance on claiming for employees wages through the Coronavirus Job Retention Scheme has been updated:

  • The Coronavirus Job Retention Scheme is being extended until 31 March 2021.
  • 30 November 2020 is the last day employers can submit or change claims for periods ending on or before 31 October 2020.
  • Claims for furlough days in November 2020 must be submitted by 14 December 2020.
  • Guidance has been updated with detail on employer claim information that HMRC will make public.
  • Guidance on calculating how much you can claim for furloughed and flexibly furloughed employees has been updated with clarification of information relating to claim period deadlines and timings
  • Language has been changed to make it clear that for claim periods starting on or after 1 December 2020 you cannot claim for any days on or after 1 December 2020 during which the furloughed employee was serving a contractual or statutory notice period. Find out more here.
  • Eligibility criteria has been made clearer for employees who are made redundant on or after 23 September 2020 and you have re-employed and employees that have a fixed term contract that expired after 23 September. Find out more here.

Maintaining records of staff, customers and visitors to support NHS Test and Trace: Cinemas, concert venues and theatres have been added to the list of venues that must have a system in place to request and record contact details of their customers, visitors and staff to help break the chains of transmission of Coronavirus. It has also been clarified that indoor sports and leisure centres includes gyms.

Providing apprenticeships during the Coronavirus outbreak: Guidance for apprentices, employers, training providers and assessment organisations has been updated with information about the extension of the Coronavirus Job Retention Scheme, the national restrictions guidance, the package of support available for those who have been made redundant on or after 15 October, and functional skills.

Kickstart Scheme: employer resources: 'Tips’ for making a successful Kickstart Scheme application has been updated.

Travel

Transport measures to protect the UK from variant strains of COVID-19: New guidance for lorry drivers and maritime and aviation transport crew moving freight between the UK and places with outbreaks of variant strain COVID-19 has been published.

Jobs that qualify for travel exemptions - Seasonal poultry workers: Exemption for seasonal poultry workers who have an offer of employment for seasonal work to carry out specific activities in poultry processing on a named farm or processing site has been added, check for more information here.

Extra Bank Holiday Announced

Extra Bank Holiday to mark The Queen’s Platinum Jubilee in 2022: The Nation will come together over a four-day Bank Holiday weekend to celebrate The Queen’s 70-year reign. The May Bank Holiday Weekend will be moved to Thursday 2 June 2022, and an additional Bank Holiday on Friday 3 June 2022 will see a four-day weekend to celebrate Her Majesty The Queen’s Platinum Jubilee - the first time any British monarch has reached this historic milestone. For more information on June 2022 Bank Holiday, check here.

Other useful links

Some aspects of business support are devolved. Specific information for businesses and employers in Northern Ireland, Scotland and Wales is available. In England, Growth Hubs can advise on local and UK Government business support. You can also find helpful business case studies and other useful information on the Coronavirus Business Support Blog.

 

 

Coronavirus (COVID-19) Businesses and Employers Bulletin - 12 November 2020

Support Grants for businesses in England

  • Coronavirus grant due to national restrictions (for closed businesses): The Local Restrictions Support Grant (LRSG (Closed) Addendum) supports businesses in England that have been required to close due to the national restrictions between 5 November and 2 December 2020. Eligible businesses may be entitled to a cash grant from their local council for each 28-day period under national restrictions. To check your eligibility and for more information, click here
  • Coronavirus Local Restrictions Support Grant (for closed businesses): Businesses in England that were open as usual and were then required to close due to local restrictions (local COVID alert level: Very High) may be eligible for the local restrictions support grant. Eligible businesses are entitled to a cash grant from their local council for each 14-day period they are closed. To check your eligibility and for more information, click here
  • Check if you're eligible for the coronavirus Local Restrictions Support Grant (for open businesses): The Local Restrictions Support Grant (LRSG (Open)) supports businesses that have been severely impacted due to temporary local restrictions. Businesses that have not had to close but which have been severely impacted due to local restrictions (Local COVID alert levels: High or Very High) may be eligible for LRSG (Open). Eligible businesses may be entitled to a cash grant from their local council for each 28-day period under local restrictions. To check your eligibility and for more information, click here.  
  • Check if you're eligible for the coronavirus Additional Restrictions Grant: The Additional Restrictions Grant (ARG) supports businesses that are not covered by other grant schemes or where additional funding is needed.  The scheme provides local councils with grant funding to support closed businesses that do not directly pay business rates as well as businesses that do not have to close but which are impacted. In addition, larger grants can be given than those made through LRSG (Closed). To check your eligibility and for more information, click here.  

Check if your nightclub, dance hall or adult entertainment business is eligible for a coronavirus grant due to national restrictions: Businesses in England that have been required to close due to the national restrictions introduced in March 2020, and which have not been able to re-open, may be eligible for Local Restrictions Support Grant. Eligible businesses are entitled to a cash grant from their local council for each 14 day period they are closed. For more information and to check your eligibility, click here.  

New Guidance

Coronavirus Bounce Back Loan: The Bounce Back Loan Scheme enables smaller businesses to access finance more quickly during the coronavirus outbreak. New options are available to top up existing loans, extend the loan period, make interest-only repayments, or pause repayments. 

The scheme is open to applications until 31 January 2021. If you already have a Bounce Back Loan but borrowed less than you were entitled to, you can top up your existing loan to your maximum amount. You must request the top-up by 31 January 2021. For more information about the scheme click here

Claiming Statutory Sick Pay paid to employees due to Coronavirus: Find out if you can use the Coronavirus Statutory Sick Pay Rebate Scheme to claim back employees’ coronavirus-related Statutory Sick Pay (SSP). The online service to claim back SSP is now available. For more information on who can use the scheme, click here.  

Restaurants, pubs and cafes will get automatic freedoms to provide takeaway services for another year. This was due to end on 23 March 2021 but will now be extended by another year. To know more about the automatic freedoms to provide takeaway services for another year, click here 

How HMRC will continue to support customers and the economy: HMRC’s work has been at the centre of the government’s response to COVID-19. HMRC have issued a briefing on how they will work with customers and stakeholders over the coming months, while COVID-19 continues to impact the country. 

The UK Transition: time is running out

With just 50 days to go until the UK’s new start, attend one of our webinars to help prepare your business.

  • Using personal data from 1 January 2021 – 11am, Wednesday 18 November, and the on demand – register here.
  • Business travel and and investing or establishing in the EU - 11am, Wednesday 25 November, and then on demand - register here.

Watch other sector specific webinars on demand here and register for all transition webinars here.

For the latest transition information direct to your inbox, sign up to the Transition Readiness Business Bulletin here.

Updated Guidance

Coronavirus Job Retention Scheme: Guidance has been updated with details of how to claim for periods after 1 November 2020. 30 November 2020 is the last day employers can submit or change claims for periods ending on or before 31 October 2020. Eligibility criteria has been made clearer for employees who are made redundant on or after 23 September 2020 and you have re-employed and employees that have a fixed term contract that expired after 23 September. The dates relating to TUPE eligibility have also been corrected. 

Coronavirus Job Retention Scheme - Company directors with an annual pay period: Guidance for company directors with an annual pay period has been updated here 

Companies House: You can now appeal a late filing penalty online here. For the latest Companies House information, click here 

Businesses in Scotland: Information for Scottish businesses has been updated to reflect updates to UK government business support from 5 November. For more information, click here.  

Guidance for Restaurants, pubs, bars, and takeaway services:   Guidance on working safely during coronavirus has been updated. Hospitality venues like restaurants, bars and pubs must close, but can still provide takeaway and delivery services. Sale of alcohol is permitted via pre-order for collection or delivery services only. Anyone who can work from home, should and clinically extremely vulnerable individuals should not attend work if they can’t work from home for this period of restrictions. For more information, click here.  

Travel

Freight exemption removed for UK haulage drivers arriving from Denmark: UK haulage drivers arriving from Denmark are now required to self-isolate on entry to England. All non-British national or resident travellers who had been in or through Denmark in the last 14 days will now be denied entry upon arrival. Non-UK resident HGV drivers have now been added to those restrictions, while all passenger vessels and accompanied freight from Denmark will be halted. For more information, click here

Up to date travel advice is available here, including information about countries that are currently part of the UK travel corridor. 

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Coronavirus (COVID-19) Businesses and Employers Bulletin - 3 November 2020

Prime Minister announces new national restrictions in England from Thursday 5 November

To reduce social contact, the Government has ordered certain businesses and venues to close. These include:

  • all non-essential retail, including, but not limited to clothing and electronics stores, vehicle showrooms, travel agents, betting shops, auction houses, tailors, car washes, tobacco and vape shops.
  • indoor and outdoor leisure facilities such as bowling alleys, leisure centres and gyms, sports facilities including swimming pools, golf courses and driving ranges, dance studios, stables and riding centres, soft play facilities, climbing walls and climbing centres, archery and shooting ranges, water and theme parks.
  • entertainment venues such as theatres, concert halls, cinemas, museums and galleries, casinos, adult gaming centres and arcades, bingo halls, bowling alleys, concert halls, zoos and other animal attractions, botanical gardens.
  • personal care facilities such as hair, beauty and nail salons, tattoo parlours, spas, massage parlours, body and skin piercing services, non-medical acupuncture, and tanning salons.

Food shops, supermarkets, garden centres and certain other retailers providing essential goods and services can remain open. Essential retail should follow COVID-secure guidelines to protect customers, visitors and workers Non-essential retail can remain open for delivery to customers and click-and-collect. Hospitality venues like restaurants, bars and pubs must close, but can still provide takeaway and delivery services. However, takeaway of alcohol will not be allowed. Hotels, hostels and other accommodation should only open for those who have to travel for work purposes and for a limited number of other exemptions which will be set out in law.

Going to work: To help contain the virus, everyone who can work effectively from home must do so. Where people cannot do so (for instance people who work in critical national infrastructure, construction or manufacturing) they should continue to travel to work/attend their workplace. This is essential to keeping the 

Furlough Scheme Extended and Further Economic Support announced

In light of the increased restrictions the UK government is introducing additional economic and business support measures:

The Coronavirus Job Retention Scheme: The Coronavirus Job Retention Scheme, also known as the furlough scheme, has been extended to December 2020. Check to find:

The Job Support Scheme will not be introduced until after Coronavirus Job Retention Scheme ends.

Self-Employment Income Support Scheme Grant Extension:  The grant is being extended from 1 November 2020. The grant will be increased from the previously announced level of 40% of trading profits to 80% for November 2020. Find out if you are eligible and how much you can get.

Business Grants: Business premises forced to close in England due to local or national restrictions will be eligible for the following:

  • For properties with a rateable value of £15k or under, grants to be £1,334 per month, or £667 per two weeks;
  • For properties with a rateable value of between £15k-£51k grants to be £2,000 per month, or £1,000 per two weeks;
  • For properties with a rateable value of £51k or over grants to be £3,000 per month, or £1,500 per two weeks.

Business grant policy is fully devolved. Devolved Administrations will receive Barnett consequentials which they could use to establish similar schemes.

Loan schemes: application deadlines extended to January 31 2021: The application deadlines for the coronavirus Bounce Back Loan, Coronavirus Business Interruption Loan, Coronavirus Large Business Interruption Loan Scheme and coronavirus Future Fund have been extended  until 31 January 2021.

Business Secretary speaks at the CBI 2020 Annual Conference

Click here to read the Business Secretary’s full speech at the CBI annual conference covering Covid measures and help for business.

The UK Transition: time is running out

With just 59 days to go until the UK’s new start, the Business Secretary Alok Sharma is encouraging firms to sign up for a webinar to find out more about the actions to take. Business Secretary Alok Sharma said: “Time is running out for businesses to get ready for the end of the transition period on 31 December and prepare for the guaranteed set of changes and opportunities ahead. I urge as many businesses as possible to sign up to the second phase of our webinars or visit gov.uk to see what actions need to be taken to ensure we’re ready for the UK’s new start as an independent country.”

For the latest transition information direct to your inbox, sign up to the Transition Readiness Business Bulletin here.

Updated Guidance

Repay Eat Out to Help Out Scheme payments to avoid a penalty: Find out how to pay back all or some of the payments your business claimed if you have overclaimed when taking part in the Eat Out to Help Out Scheme.

Changes to notifying an option to tax land and buildings during coronavirus: The date the extended time limit for notifying an option to tax land and buildings applies to has been extended to decisions made between 15 February 2020 and 31 March 2021. For more information, click here.

Guidance for driving instructors and motorcycle trainers about the restart of driver and rider training and tests: Information has been added to reflect the suspension of driving lessons and driving tests in England from 05 November to 02 December. For more information, click here.

Other useful links

Some aspects of business support are devolved. Specific information for businesses and employers in Northern Ireland, Scotland and Wales is available. In England, Growth Hubs can advise on local and UK Government business support. You can also find helpful business case studies and other useful information on the Coronavirus Business Support Blog.

 

 

Coronavirus (COVID-19) – Businesses and Employers Bulletin 9 October 2020

Job Support Scheme expanded to firms required to close due to covid restrictions

The Job Support Scheme (JSS) will be expanded to support businesses across the UK required to close their premises due to coronavirus restrictions.  

  • This scheme will cover businesses that, as a result of restrictions set by one or more of the four governments in the UK, are legally required to close their premises. This includes businesses that are required to provide only delivery and collection services from their premises, or food and drink outdoors from their premises.  
  • The government will support eligible businesses by paying two thirds of each employees’ salary (or 67%), up to a maximum of £2,100 a month. 
  • Under the scheme, employers will not be required to contribute towards wages and only asked to cover NICS and pension contributions. Businesses will only be eligible to claim the grant while they are subject to restrictions and employees must be off work for a minimum of seven consecutive days. 
  • The scheme will begin on 1 November and will be available for six months, with a review point in January. 
  • In line with the rest of the JSS, payments to businesses will be made in arrears, via a HMRC claims service that will be available from early December. Employees of firms that have been legally closed in the period before 1 November are eligible for the CJRS. 
  • The scheme is UK wide and the UK Government will work with the devolved administrations to ensure the scheme operates effectively across all four nations. 
  • Further guidance on the scheme will be set out by HMRC in due course. 

In addition to expansion of the JSS, the government is increasing the cash grants to businesses in England shut in local lockdowns to support with fixed costs. These grants will be linked to rateable values, with up to £3,000 per month payable every two weeks, compared to the up to £1,500 every three weeks which was available previously. 

The devolved administrations in Scotland, Wales and Northern Ireland will benefit from a £1.3 billion increase to their guaranteed funding for 2020-21 - allowing them to continue their response to Covid-19 including through similar measures if they wish. 

Taskforce for safe return to global travel launched

A new Global Travel Taskforce to support the travel industry and the safe recovery of international travel has been launched. The taskforce will consider further how government can support the sector to meet these challenges posed by COVID-19 to international travel. Work will begin with industry on how to safely reduce self-isolation period with testing. The taskforce will also consider a wide range of other measures to support the travel sector including developing a global framework to make travelling easier.  

New and Updated Guidance

UPDATED Guidance

Job Retention Bonus: Further information has been published on how businesses can claim the government’s Job Retention Bonus. Check your eligibility and find out how to apply. 

Advice for food businesses: Guidance for all workplaces involved in the manufacturing, processing, warehousing, picking, packaging, retailing and service of food has been updated. Please see the latest version here.  

Restaurants, pubs, bars and takeaway services: Working safely guidance has been updated on the operation of soft play and indoor play areas and taking payment in licensed venues.  

Self-Employment Income Support Scheme grant extension: The grant is being extended from 1 November 2020. Find out here if you are eligible and how much you can get. Guidance is available on how HMRC will work out your trading profits and non-trading income if you're self-employed or a member of a partnership and have been adversely affected by coronavirus.  A video on how to claim the second grant step-by-step is also available

Coronavirus Job Retention Scheme: 30 November 2020 is the last day you can submit claims for periods ending on or before 31 October 2020. After this date you will not be able to submit any further claims or add to existing claims. More here.  

Cyber safety guide to help small businesses work securely online: The National Cyber Security Centre’s re-launched Small Business Guide sets out five key areas for businesses to help improve their cyber security.  The new-look guidance arrives at a time when many organisations have moved their operations online due to the coronavirus pandemic. It highlights accessible and actionable steps to take which have little to no cost. There is also guidance that helps small to medium sized organisations prepare their response to and plan their recovery from a cyber incident.  

Join a webinar

How has Government support helped your BAME business during the pandemic? Join this webinar with Nadhim Zahawi on Wednesday 14 October from 17:00-18:00 to discuss government support for BAME businesses during the pandemic. The webinar will include accounts from BAME businesses on how the government has supported them during the pandemic, and information about current business support for your business and the UK transition. 

UK Transition Business Webinars: Prepare your business for new rules from January 2021:  The UK has left the EU and is leaving the EU single market and customs union. The end of the transition period means businesses should take action now to prepare for guaranteed changes and new rules from January 2021. Join a free webinar to understand the actions that your business needs to take before the end of the year. Sign-up to attend here.   

Travel corridors in England

From 4am Saturday 10 October, people arriving in England from the Greek Islands of Lesvos, Santorini, Serifos, Tinos and Zakynthos will not need to self-isolate for 2 weeks.   

The travel corridor list of countries and territories from where you can travel to England and may not have to self-isolate is available here. Countries and territories can be taken off or added to this travel corridor list at any time.  

Coronavirus (COVID-19) – Businesses and Employers Bulletin 2 October 2020

On Friday, HM Treasury and HMRC published the full guidance and updated the CJRS guidance.

Job Retention Bonus

The JRB was announced as part of the Chancellor’s Plan for Jobs. The JRB allows employers to claim a one-off payment of £1,000 for every eligible employee they have furloughed and claimed for through the Coronavirus Job Retention Scheme (CJRS) and kept continuously employed until at least 31 January 2021. Employers do not have to pay this money to their employee.

The guidance published today further sets out details of employees who can be claimed for and specific cases such as employees who have been transferred under TUPE and claiming for individuals who are not employees.

The guidance also sets the timeline for when the bonus can be claimed. Employers will be able to claim the bonus from 15 February until 31 March, after they submit PAYE information for the period to 5 February 2021.

Finally, the guidance sets out some technical examples regarding how the minimum income threshold criteria works in practice when determining eligibility for the JRB.

For more information, the full guidance can be found at https://www.gov.uk/guidance/check-if-you-can-claim-the-job-retention-bonus-from-15-february-2021

Coronavirus Job Retention Scheme

Updated CJRS guidance details how the scheme closes on 31 October and employers will need to make final claims on or before 30 November. They will not be able to submit or add to any claims after this date.

For more information, the full updated guidance can be found at https://www.gov.uk/guidance/claim-for-wages-through-the-coronavirus-job-retention-scheme

Coronavirus (COVID-19) – Businesses and Employers Bulletin 24 September 2020

Chancellor outlines Winter Economy Plan

The Chancellor Rishi Sunak has outlined additional government support to provide certainty to businesses and workers impacted by coronavirus across the UK.

Job support scheme

  • A new Job Support Scheme will be introduced from 1 November to protect viable jobs in businesses who are facing lower demand over the winter months due to coronavirus. Under the scheme, which will run for six months, the government will contribute towards the wages of employees who are working fewer than normal hours due to decreased demand.
  • Employers will continue to pay the wages of staff for the hours they work - but for the hours not worked, the government and the employer will each pay one third of their equivalent salary. In order to support only viable jobs, employees must be working at least 33% of their usual hours. The level of grant will be calculated based on employee’s usual salary, capped at £697.92 per month. The Job Support Scheme will be open to businesses across the UK even if they have not previously used the furlough scheme, with further guidance being published in due course.

 Self-employment income support scheme

  • The Government is continuing its support for millions of self-employed individuals by extending the Self Employment Income Support SchemeGrant (SEISS). An initial taxable grant will be provided to those who are currently eligible for SEISS and are continuing to actively trade but face reduced demand due to coronavirus. The initial lump sum will cover three months’ worth of profits for the period from November to the end of January next year. This is worth 20% of average monthly profits, up to a total of £1,875. An additional second grant, which may be adjusted to respond to changing circumstances, will be available for self-employed individuals to cover the period from February 2021 to the end of April.

Tax cuts and deferrals

 

  • The temporary 15% VAT cut for the tourism and hospitality sectors will be extended to the end of March next year. In addition, business who deferred their VAT bills will be given more breathing space through the New Payment Scheme, which gives them the option to pay back in smaller instalments. Self-assessment taxpayers will be able to benefit from a separate additional 12-month extension from HMRC on the “Time to Pay” self-service facility, meaning payments deferred from July 2020, and those due in January 2021, will now not need to be paid until January 2022.

Giving businesses flexibility to pay back loans

  • Businesses who took out a Bounce Back Loan will be given the option to repay their loan over a period of up to ten years through a new Pay as You Grow flexible repayment system. Interest-only periods of up to six months and payment holidays will also be available to businesses.
  • Coronavirus Business Interruption Loan Scheme lenders will be given the ability to extend the length of loans from a maximum of six years to ten years if it will help businesses to repay the loan.

The government is extending four temporary loan schemes to 30 November 2020 for new applications: As a result, more businesses will now be able to benefit from the Coronavirus Business Interruption Loan Scheme, the Coronavirus Large Business 

Restrictions on businesses and venues in England

From 24 September, businesses selling food or drink (including cafes, bars, pubs and restaurants), social clubs, casinos, bowling alleys, amusement arcades (and other indoor leisure centres or facilities), funfairs, theme parks, and adventure parks and activities, and bingo halls, must be closed between 10pm and 5am. This will include take-aways, but delivery and drive-thru services can continue after 10pm.

In both indoor and outdoor licensed premises, food and drink must be ordered from, and served at, a table. Licensed and unlicensed businesses must also take all reasonable steps to ensure that the customer remains seated whilst consuming the food or drink on the premises. Cinemas, theatres and concert halls can continue beyond 10pm, but only if the performance started before 10pm, and food and drink cannot be served after 10pm.

From 28 September, businesses and organisations will face stricter rules to make their premises COVID-19 secure

  • A wider range of leisure and entertainment venues, services provided in community centres, and close contact services will be subject to COVID-19 Secure requirements in law and fines of £1000, and rising up to £10,000 for repeated breaches.
  • Employers must not knowingly require or encourage someone who is being required to self-isolate to come to work.
  • Businesses must remind people to wear face coverings where mandated.

This guidance applies to England, except for where local restrictions apply.

Working from home and working safely guidance

  • To help contain the virus, office workers who can work effectively from home should do so over the winter. Where an employer, in consultation with their employee, judges an employee can carry out their normal duties from home they should do so. Public sector employees working in essential services, including education settings, should continue to go into work where necessary. Anyone else who cannot work from home should go to their place of work. More here.
  • Business conferences, exhibitions and large sporting events in England will not be able to reopen from 1 October as previously planned.
  • Guidance for early years and childcare providers has been updated with new content in a number of areas.
  • Guidance covering personal trainers and coaching has been updated.
  • Guidance for restaurants, pubs, bars and takeaway services has been updated with information on penalties for breaching the rules and guidance on Test and Trace data and display of NHS QR codes.

Safer transport guidance for operators has been updated with changes to guidance on working from home; on wearing face coverings in retail and hospitality venues located within transport hubs; and on the requirement for passengers to wear face coverings in taxis and private hire vehicles.

New and Updated Guidance

NEW Guidance

Measures from the Corporate Insolvency and Governance Act extended to relieve pressure on businesses dealing with coronavirus: Measures put in place to protect businesses from insolvency will be extended to continue giving them much-needed breathing space during the coronavirus.

NHS COVID-19 app launched across England and Wales: The NHS COVID-19 app has launched to help control COVID-19 transmission alongside national and local contact tracing. From today certain businesses in England are required by law to display NHS Test and Trace QR codes so customers with the NHS COVID-19 app can use them to check-in. QR codes will help businesses meet their legal requirement to log contact details and allow public health leads to send alerts based on whether people have checked in at venues.

New package to support and enforce self-isolation in England: A new package has been announced to support and enforce self-isolation, including a payment of £500 for those on lower incomes who cannot work from home and have lost income as a result. New fines for those breaching self-isolation rules will start at £1,000 but could increase to up to £10,000 for repeat offences and for the most egregious breaches, including for those preventing others from self-isolating.

HM Land Registry – New coronavirus practice guide: A new Practice guide 80: useful information for conveyancers provides information about changes made to facilitate conveyancing and registration before and during the coronavirus outbreak.

 

Consultation: National Insurance Contributions holiday for employers that hire former members of the armed forces: The government is seeking views from employers of veterans, software providers and accountants on the National Insurance contribution holiday for veterans announced at Spring Budget 2020. This relief will be available to employers of veterans from April 2021.  Find out more and respond here before 5 October.

Other useful links

 

Some aspects of business support are devolved. Specific information for businesses and employers in Northern Ireland, Scotland and Wales is available. In England, Growth Hubs can advise on local and UK Government business support. You can also find helpful business case studies and other useful information on the Coronavirus Business Support Blog.

Coronavirus (COVID-19) Businesses and Employers Bulletin - 9 September 2020

New measures to suppress the virus and keep the number of infections down

Prime Minister Boris Johnson has made a statement on new measures to suppress the virus and keep the number of infections down.

What has changed for businesses in England:

  • From Monday 14 September, you must not meet with people from other households socially in groups of more than 6. This will apply indoors and outdoors. COVID-19 Secure venues, such as restaurants and hospitality venues, can still host larger numbers in total but groups of up to 6 must not mix or form larger groups. Education and work settings are unaffected, and organised team sports will still be able to proceed, as will weddings and funerals up to 30.
  • Businesses will have a clear duty to support NHS Test and Trace. From 18 September, it will be mandatory for certain businesses to have a system to collect NHS Test and Trace data, and keep this for 21 days. Core COVID-19 Secure requirements will be mandated for hospitality businesses, and egregious breaches enforced.
  • The Government will support Local Authorities and police forces to respond to breaches of COVID-19 Secure guidelines. Simplified COVID-19 Secure guidance is available here.
  • The Government will review plans to pilot larger audiences in venues this month. Planned sports pilot events will be limited to smaller, safer numbers, with strict conditions to ensure social distancing, and will not take place in areas where incidence is high. We will review our intention to return audiences to stadia and conference centres from 1 October.
  • The Government will restrict the opening hours of premises, initially in local lockdown areas, with the option of national action in the future. This has been introduced in Bolton, following a steep rise in cases, and will seek to restrict activities that may lead to a spread in the virus.

These measures apply to England – but there may be different rules if you operate in an area under local lockdown and you should check those rules here. If you are in WalesScotland and Northern Ireland, different rules may apply. 

New and Updated Guidance

NEW Guidance

Wedding services: coronavirus cancellations and refunds: The Competition and Markets Authority (CMA) have issued a statement to help consumers understand their rights and to help businesses to treat their customers fairly.

UPDATED Guidance

Kickstart Scheme – support finding a representative: A Kickstart Scheme application must be for a minimum of 30 job placements. If a single employer cannot provide this many job placements, they can: Join a group of other employers, nominating a representative for the group to submit the application or register their interest with existing representatives, such as local authorities, chambers of commerce or trade bodies. You can contact your local or national Kickstart Scheme employer contact for help getting a representative.

Seafarers qualify for travel exemptions: Seafarers have been added to the list of jobs that qualify for exemptions from self-isolation or passenger locator form requirements. Find the full list of exempt jobs here.

Updates to local restrictions and travel corridors in England

Local restrictions

Bolton: New measures have been introduced to help prevent the spread of coronavirus.

  • All venues in the hospitality sector in Bolton – pubs, restaurants, cafes, any premises serving food and drink must restrict to take away only with immediate effect.
  • Businesses offering a takeaway service can remain open but must close between 10pm and 5am.

More advice for businesses is available from Bolton Council.

Blackburn with Darwen, Oldham, Pendle: Previously restricted businesses and venues can now open or restart in all the affected areas. Find out more here.

Leicester:  From 8 September, the following business and venue closures will no longer apply in Leicester City: Indoor gyms; Indoor fitness and dance studios; Indoor sports courts and facilities and Indoor swimming pools, including indoor facilities at water parks. Certain businesses and venues are required to remain closed to members of the public, including after 8 September. Find full details here.

North of England: Business and venues can now open or restart in all the affected areas apart from Bolton, where restrictions continue to apply. Find out more here

A list of areas with additional local restrictions is available here.

Travel corridors

Islands policy introduced to travel corridors: A more targeted approach to travel corridors has been introduced by separating some islands from mainland countries. Find out more here.

Crete, Lesvos, Mykonos, Santorini, Serifos, Tinos and Zakynthos have been removed from the travel corridor list. The FCO advises against all non-essential travel to these islands. If you return from the above islands you will need to self-isolate.

The travel corridor list of countries and territories from where you can travel to England and may not have to self-isolate is available here. Countries and territories can be taken off or added to this travel corridor list at any time.

Calling all Tradespeople! Boost your business with TrustMark today

Want to be part of the Green Homes Grant scheme? Want to maximise on government funding? Millions of pounds of government cash will be made available through the Green Homes Grant for home owners this month to help customers across the UK improve the energy efficiency of their homes. Get TrustMark accredited today so you are ready to hit the ground running and receive the orders as they start coming in. Find out more and sign up here.

Other useful links

Some aspects of business support are devolved. Specific information for businesses and employers in Northern Ireland, Scotland and Wales is available. In England, Growth Hubs can advise on local and UK Government business support. You can also find helpful business case studies and other useful information on the Coronavirus Business Support Blog.

 

Coronavirus (COVID-19) – Businesses and Employers Bulletin 2 September 2020

Kickstart Scheme

The government has introduced a new Kickstart Scheme in Great Britain, a £2 billion fund to create hundreds of thousands of high quality 6-month work placements aimed at those aged 16 to 24 who are on Universal Credit and are deemed to be at risk of long term unemployment.

Funding available for each job will cover 100% of the relevant National Minimum Wage for 25 hours a week, plus the associated employer National Insurance contributions and employer minimum automatic enrolment contributions.

Find more guidance and promotional materials here.

New Updates and Guidance

NEW Guidance

Competition and Markets Authority – Cancellation and refund updates: The Competition and Markets Authority (CMA) remains of the view that a consumer will generally be entitled to a refund when they have paid money in advance for services or goods that cannot be provided because of the coronavirus pandemic. Given the evolving situation, the CMA has provided more detail on issues such as the difference between lockdown laws and government guidance, and their impact on cancellations and refunds. Further details are available here.

Guidance for landlords: Legislation has been introduced so that, until at least March 2011, landlords must now give tenants 6 months’ notice before they can evict. Guidance provides advice for landlords, tenants and local authorities.

UPDATED Guidance

Reporting outbreaks of coronavirus – Action Cards: The Joint Biosecurity Centre has developed Action Cards, which reflect the latest advice on how to identify, manage and report a COVID-19 outbreak. The cards are designed as a useful visual checklist for businesses and bring together guidance and useful contacts to support your organisation’s planning. This will help businesses and other organisations work effectively with their local public health teams.

Providing apprenticeships during the coronavirus outbreak: Guidance has been updated with information on routine funding audits, redundancy and the use of face coverings.

Coronavirus Job Retention Scheme: Guidance has been updated to reflect changes to the scheme:

  • From 1 September the government will pay 70% and employers will pay 10% of employees’ wages for the time they are being furloughed. Employers will also continue to pay their National Insurance and pension contributions.
  • From 1 October the government will pay 60% and employers will pay 20% of employees’ wages for the time they are being furloughed. Employers will also continue to pay their National Insurance and pension contributions.
  • You will continue to pay employees wages at the contracted rate for the hours they work for you.
  • The scheme ends on 31 October 2020. Find out more here.

Claim money back through the Eat Out to Help Out Scheme: The scheme has now closed, find out how to claim reimbursement for the discounts from the scheme give to diners here.

Sending your forms to Companies House during the coronavirus outbreak: The service to upload certain Companies House forms digitally has been updated with insolvency documents. Find out more here.

Updates to local restrictions and travel corridors in England

Local restrictions

Blackburn with Darwen, Oldham, Pendle: Residents of the specific areas of Blackburn with Darwen, Oldham and Pendle with additional restrictions should not meet people at indoor or outdoor public venues who are not members of their household.

  • If you operate a business or organise events within the affected areas you should take steps to ensure people do not socialise with people they do not live with, in line with COVID-19 Secure guidance.
  • If you operate a hospitality venue (including restaurants, pubs, bars and cafes) inside the areas with additional restrictions (all of Oldham and parts of Blackburn with Darwen and Pendle) then we advise that you should halt walk-ins, and only seat people who make reservations in advance, up to a maximum of six people per table from the same household. You should also take steps to ensure that people do not socialise outside of their households inside and outside your premises.

Bolton and Trafford to remain under existing restrictions. The lifting of restrictions in Burnley, Hyndburn, Stockport and parts of Calderdale, Kirklees and Bradford will go ahead from 2 September.

A list of areas with additional local restrictions is available here.

Travel corridors

Czech Republic, Jamaica and Switzerland have been removed from the travel corridor list. The FCO advises against all non-essential travel to these countries. If you return from the above countries you will need to self-isolate.

Cuba has been added to the travel corridor list. If you arrive in England from Cuba after 4am 29 August 2020 you may not need to self-isolate

The travel corridor list of countries and territories from where you can travel to England and may not have to self-isolate is available here. Countries and territories can be taken off or added to this travel corridor list at any time.

Other Useful Links

Some aspects of business support are devolved. Specific information for businesses and employers in Northern Ireland, Scotland and Wales is available. In England, Growth Hubs can advise on local and UK Government business support. You can also find helpful business case studies and other useful information on the Coronavirus Business Support Blog.

Coronavirus (COVID-19) – Businesses and Employers Bulletin 27 August 2020

New payment for people self-isolating in highest risk areas

People on low incomes who need to self-isolate and are unable to work from home in areas with high incidence of COVID-19 will benefit from a new payment scheme. To be eligible for the funding, individuals must meet the following criteria:

  • Have tested positive for Covid-19 or received a notification from NHS Test and Trace asking them to self-isolate
  • Have agreed to comply with the notification from NHS Test and Trace and provided contact details to the local authority.
  • Be employed or self-employed. Employed people will be asked to show proof of employment. Self-employed will be required to show evidence of trading income and that their business delivers services which the local authority reasonably judges they are unable to carry out without social contact
  • Be unable to work from home (checks will be undertaken on all applicants) and will lose income a result
  • Be currently receiving Universal Credit or Working Tax Credit.

More information is available here.

Updates and guidance

NEW 

New COVID-19 secure guidance for enforcement agents (also known as bailiffs) using the Taking Control of Goods process has been published here.

Information for adult social care providers on COVID-19 guidance and support is available here.

Safer transport campaign – car sharing: A number of shareable assets are available to help you support your staff to plan their journey to and from work. This includes information on car sharing. People should try not to share a vehicle with those outside their household or support bubble. Where people do need to car share they should try to: keep the windows open; share the car with the same people each time; and wear a face-covering.

Enjoy summer safely campaign: The UK government is working to ensure public health measures are accessible and inclusive. Your business can support the work government is doing by ensuring measures that you implement, for example providing handwashing or sanitizing stations, are accessible by all. Businesses should also be mindful that not all disabilities are visible and that some people are exempt from wearing face-covering. Social media assets that you might like to share are available here.

UPDATED

Travel Corridors – England: Austria, Croatia and Trinidad and Tobago have been removed from the travel corridor list. If you arrive in England from these destinations you will need to self-isolate. Portugal has been added to the travel corridor list. If you arrive in England from Portugal after 4am on 22 August you may not need to self-isolate.

Safer transport guidance for operators has been updated with information on areas with local restrictions. 

Respond to Call for Evidence on the recognition of professional qualifications and regulation of professions

The government has opened a Call for Evidence to gather insights into how professional qualifications are recognised and professions are regulated. We would like to hear your views and experiences on employing regulated professionals and using services provided by these professionals. To respond, please complete the online questionnaire or submit your response to professional-regulation-evidence@beis.gov.uk by 23 October.

Other Useful Links

Some aspects of business support are devolved. Specific information for businesses and employers in Northern Ireland, Scotland and Wales is available. In England, Growth Hubs can advise on local and UK Government business support. You can also find helpful business case studies and other useful information on the Coronavirus Business Support Blog.

Coronavirus (COVID-19) – Businesses and Employers Bulletin 20 August 2020

Austria, Croatia and Trinidad and Tobago to be removed from the travel corridor list. Portugal is reinstated

Austria, Croatia and Trinidad and Tobago will be removed from the travel corridor list from 4am Saturday 22 August.  People returning will need to self-isolate for two weeks.  Portugal is to be added to the travel corridor list at 4am Saturday 22 August.  Find out more here.

Integrated Review: call for evidence

The Integrated Review of Security, Defence, Development and Foreign Policy (the Integrated Review) will define the Government’s vision for the UK’s role in the world over the next decade. Its goal is to set the long-term strategic aims of our international policy and national security, rooted in our national interests, so that our activity overseas delivers for the British people. The Review will cover all aspects of international and national security policy, such as defence, diplomacy, development and national resilience. In doing so, it will re-examine the UK’s priorities and objectives in light of the UK’s departure from the European Union and at a time when the global landscape is changing rapidly, including as a result of Covid-19. It will set the direction for a strong recovery at home and abroad, recognising that the two are closely linked. Please find further details along with the “call for evidence” questions, a response template and email address to return the evidence to Government - here.

UPDATED Guidance

Watch videos and register for the free webinars to learn more about the support available to help you deal with the economic impacts of coronavirus.

The Self-Employment Income Support Scheme YouTube videos for claiming the second grant and for Universal Credit and Child Benefit has been updated, find it here.

Coronavirus Job Retention Scheme

Find out what you need to do if you've claimed too much or not enough from the Coronavirus Job Retention Scheme.  This has been updated to include a phone number - please see details here.

Leicester lockdown: businesses reopening from 19 August

The following businesses and venues can re-open in Leicester City from 19 August: outdoor pools, outdoor theatres, opera and music venues, recreational cricket, nail bars and salons, tanning booths and salons, spas and beauty salons, massage parlours, tattoo parlours, and body and skin piercing services. Indoor swimming pools, casinos, bowling, indoor play centres, indoor fitness/sports and dance studios must remain closed.  Current rules for gatherings in private homes and gardens will remain in place.  Find the full update here.

Other Useful Links

Some aspects of business support are devolved. Specific information for businesses and employers in Northern Ireland, Scotland and Wales is available. In England, Growth Hubs can advise on local and UK Government business support. You can also find helpful business case studies and other useful information on the Coronavirus Business Support Blog.

Coronavirus (COVID-19) Businesses and Employers Bulletin - 11 August 2020

Coronavirus (COVID-19) business support webinars

As part of the UK government’s commitment to supporting businesses and self-employed through the coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic, HMRC have developed new webinars on the following topics.

  • Extension to the Coronavirus Job Retention Scheme and flexible furloughing webinar – available on Wednesday 12 August 2:15-3:15, Thursday 13 August 09:45-10:45 and Friday 14 August 2:15 – 3:15. Register here. 
  • Eat out to help out scheme webinar – Wednesday 12 August 3:45-4:40. Register here.
  • Coronavirus (COVID-19) Self-Employment Income Support Scheme, Universal Credit and Child Benefit webinar – Tuesday 18 August 2:15-3:00, Wednesday 19 August 3:45-4:30, Thursday 20 August 11:15-12:00 and Friday 21 August 09:45-10:30. Register here. 

Coronavirus (COVID-19) Statutory Sick Pay Rebate Scheme webinar – Thursday 20 August 12:45-1:30. Register here.   

Eight reasons to Shop Local this week to help the high street bounce back

The UK Government is running a #ShopLocal week this week, as part of its #EnjoySummerSafely campaign. The week aims to celebrate the British high street – encouraging customers to come back to their safe local shops, supporting the local economy and local jobs.  Please do look out for content on the BEIS social media channels.  Please also consider posting yourself about #ShopLocal week, and BEIS will look to amplify some of the best content.  Further information about the week is available here.

To help kick off Shop Local Week, here are eight reasons why people should visit the high street.

New Updates and Guidance

NEW Guidance

North of England: local restrictions

An outbreak of coronavirus (COVID-19) has been identified in parts of Greater Manchester, East Lancashire, Preston, and West Yorkshire. The UK government and relevant local authorities are acting together to control the spread of the virus.

  • Those in the affected areas must not meet people they do not live with inside a private home or garden, except where they have formed a support bubble (or for other limited exemptions to be specified in law);
  • Visit someone else’s home or garden even if they live outside of the affected areas;
  • All businesses and venues which were required to remain closed before 31 July in both Blackburn with Darwen and in Bradford, must continue to remain closed to members of the public.

Find out more here.

Brunei and Malaysia added to travel corridor list

From 4am on Tuesday 11 August 2020, passengers arriving to England from these destinations will no longer need to self-isolate, so long as they haven’t been in, or transited through, any other non-exempt countries in the 14 days preceding their arrival. More information can be found here.

Andorra, Belgium and The Bahamas have been removed from travel corridors list

People arriving in England from Andorra, Belgium and The Bahamas will need to self-isolate for 2 weeks as the countries are removed from the travel exemptions list. The Foreign and Commonwealth Office has also updated its travel advice to advise against all but essential travel to Andorra, Belgium and The Bahamas.

Employer guide to results for regulated qualifications: summer 2020

A new guide for employers about qualification results in England this summer is available.

Supported living services during coronavirus

New guidance for providers of supported living settings is available.

Companies House to resume the compulsory strike off process

From 10 October 2020, Companies House will resume the process to strike off companies they believe are no longer carrying on business or in operation. From this date, they will resume the process to remove a company from the register if there’s reasonable cause to believe it’s no longer carrying on business or in operation. Find out more here.

UPDATED Guidance

Claim money back through the Eat Out to Help Out Scheme

The claims service for the Eat Out to Help Out Scheme is now live. A video on how to make a claim is available here.

Hotels and other guest accommodation

Working safely during coronavirus guidance has been updated to include guidance on local restrictions for accommodation providers.

Overtime and the Coronavirus Job Retention Scheme

Guidance on calculating how much you can claim using the Coronavirus Job Retention Scheme has been updated with a new section on how to calculate your claim for fixed pay employees who have worked enough overtime (in the tax year 2019 to 2020) to have a significant impact on the amount you need to claim.

Fund to support dairy farmers in England: application deadline extended

The application deadline for the Dairy Response Fund is extended to midnight on 11 September 2020. This gives eligible farmers more time to apply for a single payment from the fund.

Other Useful Links

Some aspects of business support are devolved. Specific information for businesses and employers in Northern Ireland, Scotland and Wales is available. In England, Growth Hubs can advise on local and UK Government business support. You can also find helpful business case studies and other useful information on the Coronavirus Business Support Blog.

31st July 2020 Coronavirus (COVID-19) Businesses and Employers Bulletin