Sole traders and members of partnerships started making claims under the Self-Employed Income Support Scheme on Wednesday 13 May and many have already received their grant.

Unfortunately, unlike the CJRS furlough scheme, claims could not be made by agents on behalf of clients although we can of course check that you have received the correct amount and request a review if the amount is incorrect.

In order to be eligible your self-employed profits in 2018/19 must not exceed £50,000 and must be more than 50% of your total income. If that test is not met, then the same £50,000 and 50% tests are applied to average profits and total income over the three years (or shorter period) to 5 April 2019.

The amount of the grant that can be claimed is 80% of average profits for the three years to 5 April 2019. The grant is capped at £2,500 a month and the maximum amount is £7,500 for the initial 3 month period. The Chancellor has now announced that this scheme would be extended for 3 months from 1 June but reduced to 70% of average profits, limited to £6,570.

There are a number of anomalies, for example if the trade commenced 6 October 2017 the profits for 2017/18 and 2018/19 are divided by 2 to establish an annual profit figure rather than divided by 18 months which we consider to be unfair.

Like the CJRS furlough payments the amounts received are included in your trading profits and thus subject to income tax and national insurance.