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Big changes to SEISS for new parents

26th August 2020

Big changes to SEISS for new parents

Back in June, the UK government announced that they would be supporting the self-employed with a grant to supplement income lost during the pandemic.

The Self-Employment Income Support Scheme (SEISS) was available to:

  • Self-employed workers who had submitted their 2018/19 tax return by 23rd April 2020
  • Those whose trading profits made up more than 50% of their income

Everyone eligible could claim a grant of up to £14,070. And this was split into a maximum payment of £7,500 in June and then a second payment of up to £6,570 in August.

So, what’s new?

Originally, if you didn’t submit a 2018/19 tax return or if your self-employment income didn’t make up more than 50% of your income, you weren’t eligible to claim the grant. And if this was the case because you were pregnant, on maternity leave or caring for a new baby, it didn’t affect your eligibility. 

But now, the government has announced that they will work out your eligibility for the grant based on your 2016/17 and 2017/18 tax return if you weren’t eligible because of the following reasons:

  • You were pregnant/gave birth
  • You were caring for a child younger than one
  • You’d adopted a child that you’ve been caring for for less than a year 

This eligibility extension also applies to military reservists who weren’t previously eligible to claim. 

How much can I claim?

The government is letting you claim retrospectively, so if you’re eligible, you could claim up to the maximum grant of £14,050 in one.

The deadline to claim is 19th October 2020 – and if you’re eligible, you’ll be paid within six days.

Am I eligible?

Here’s a list of what makes you eligible:

  • You were self-employed in the 2017/18 tax year
  • Your 2017/18 tax return was filed before 23rd April 2019
  • New parents must fill in HMRC’s online form to verify their status as parents by 5th October 2020
    • Evidence of your Maternity Allowance claim
    • Your baby’s name and date of birth
    • The date of adoption
    • Child benefit number
    • Your child’s birth certificate
  • Military reservists must be self-employed
    • You must have carried out reservist activities for at least a 90-day period during when your 2018/19 profits were calculated

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