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What are the basic eligibility requirements for SEISS?

What are the basic eligibility requirements for SEISS?

An SEISS grant is available if you are an individual, but for this purpose “individual” includes partnerships. It does not apply to you as an owner-manager of a small business operating as a company - it applies to you only if you are a self-employed individual who carries on a trade and if you have lost trading profits due to Covid-19.

The dates by which you could apply for the grants to cover any of the three month periods between March 2020-January 2021 have all passed. For a grant to be payable under the rules for the extension period of SEISS February-April 2021 (covered by the 4th grant payment), you must have been trading when you applied. The last date for applications for the 4th grant payment was 31st May 2021. 

If your annual profits exceed £50,000 per annum, you are not eligible for any amount at all under SEISS. If half or more of your total annual income is not derived from your self-employment, you are not eligible for any amount at all under SEISS.

The grant payments are available to an individual who has:

(1) delivered a tax return to HMRC for the relevant tax year/s in which they have traded;  and

(2) carried on a trade in the relevant tax year/s.

You will need to consult the scheme to see which are the relevant years in relation to the grant payment/s you are claiming. 

As to eligibility for the period May-September 2021 (to be covered by the 5th grant payment), the basic rules will be the same as for the previous grant payments, but it is important to note that applicants must be able to prove when they apply that they are continuing to trade. They can apply for the 5th grant payment from late July 2021. They will be able to claim based on their tax returns for 2020-1.  

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