Last updated on:
March 17, 2024

The Self-Employment Income Support Scheme (SEISS) was a key component of the UK government's financial support package for self-employed individuals whose businesses were adversely affected by the COVID-19 pandemic. The scheme aimed to provide financial assistance to eligible self-employed workers to help them navigate the challenges posed by the pandemic.

To qualify for SEISS, applicants needed to meet specific criteria, including:

  • They must have profits from self-employment of under £50,000.
  • They must derive more than half of their income from self-employment.
  • HMRC would assess eligibility based on the average of the last three tax years or the 2018/19 tax year, specifically.
  • Applicants were required to have filed their 2019/20 Self Assessment tax return before March 2, 2021.

The SEISS grants were issued in multiple iterations, reflecting the ongoing impact of the pandemic and the government's response to evolving economic conditions. Each grant covered a percentage of average monthly trading profits, calculated over three months, and capped at specific limits.

The initial grants offered under the scheme were as follows:

  • March 2020 Scheme (First Grant): This grant covered 80% of average monthly trading profits, capped at £2,500 per month, providing a lump sum payment of up to £7,500.
  • Second Grant: This grant offered 70% of average monthly trading profits, also for three months, with a lump sum payment capped at £6,570.

Subsequent iterations of the scheme included additional grants, such as:

  • October 2020 Scheme (Third Grant): Similar to the first grant, it covered 80% of average monthly trading profits for three months, with a cap of £7,500.
  • March 2021 Scheme: The fourth grant also covered 80% of average monthly trading profits for three months, up to a total of £7,500, with applications opening in April 2021. Details of a fifth grant covering May, June, and July were to be announced later.

Key points about the SEISS included:

  • The grants provided through SEISS did not need to be repaid, although recipients were liable for Income Tax and National Insurance contributions on the amounts received.
  • Recipients were required to declare the grant on their next Self Assessment tax return.

For more detailed information, updates, and guidance on eligibility and applications, individuals were encouraged to refer to the HMRC website.

By clicking “Accept”, you agree to the storing of cookies on your device to enhance site navigation, analyse site usage, and assist in our marketing efforts. View our Privacy Policy for more information.

Arrange your free initial consultation today.

Book Free Consultation
UK's best rated accountant 2021
Rated Excellent
5 Stars
on Trustpilot