Supporting our Business community through COVID-19

Supporting our business community has never been more important.  We want to signpost  businesses to correct, relevant and timely information. To ensure that your business can get the right support.  The Government has set out a package of measures to support businesses. You can read about the package of measures on its new Coronavirus business support website.

Self-employment income support scheme

The Self-employment Income Support Scheme (SEISS) announced 26 March will support self-employed individuals (including members of partnerships) whose income has been negatively impacted by COVID-19. The scheme will provide a grant to self-employed individuals or partnerships, worth 80% of their profits up to a cap of £2,500 per month.

HMRC will use the average profits from tax returns in 2016-17, 2017-18 and 2018-19 to calculate the size of the grant. The scheme will be open to those where the majority of their income comes from self-employment and who have profits of less than £50,000. The scheme will be open for an initial three months with people able to make their first claim by the beginning of June.

To be eligible for the scheme you must meet all the criteria below:

  • Be self-employed or a member of partnership;
  • Have lost trading/partnership trading profits due to COVID-19;
  • File a tax return for 2018-19 as self-employed or a member of a trading partnership. Those who have not yet filed for 2018-19 will have an additional 4 weeks from this announcement to do so;
  • Have traded in 2019-20; be currently trading at the point of application (or would be except for COVID 19) and intend to continue to trade in the tax year 2020 to 2021
  • Have trading profits of less than £50,000 and more than half of your total income come from self-employment. This can be with reference to at least one of the following conditions:
    • Your trading profits and total income in 2018/19
    • Your average trading profits and total income across up to the three years between 2016-17, 2017-18, and 2018-19.
Find out more about the self-employment income support scheme

Business rates

All businesses in the retail, hospitality and leisure sector will have a business rates holiday for 12 months from April 2020. They will not be asked to pay in respect of the financial year 2020/21.

To support nurseries at this time, the Chancellor has also decided that they will also now be eligible for a business rates holiday for one year. That means non-local authority providers of childcare will pay no business rates in 2020/21.

Reigate & Banstead Borough Council is in the process of rebilling all relevant businesses to reflect these announcements. We expect the new bills to be sent out week commencing 23 March.

Due to the way they are printed, these bills will not have any further information relating to the current situation, so please continue to check this page for updates. Rest assured, we will not be taking Direct Debit payments on 1 April before the adjusted bills are complete.

Visit the Government's website for further guidance on Business rates: expanded retail discount.

New grants for businesses

On 17 March, the Government announced the provision of new grants to help businesses through this period of disruption caused by COVID-19:

  1. Businesses currently eligible for small business rate relief (SBBR) will be given a one-off grant of £10,000 to help meet their ongoing business costs. Local Authorities will apply the discounts under discretionary powers and will be compensated for the cost of providing the discounts by the Government. Local Authorities are not being given cash or grants in advance of the awards. As soon as we have further information, we will inform the 1,200 businesses in our borough who qualify for this grant.
  2. A grant of £25,000 will be available to retail, hospitality and leisure businesses operating from smaller premises, with a rateable value between £15,000 and £51,000. We are waiting for further guidance from the Government and will provide updates in due course. We expect there to be an application process for this grant.

Reigate & Banstead Borough Council have a list of eligible businesses and will be contacting them directly – by phone or email in first instance.  However, in order to facilitate the process, eligible businesses are encouraged to complete the online form available Covid-19 Business Grant form.

Hardship Relief

Local businesses that are not eligible for the business rates holiday can apply for a reduction in business rates.

Guidance for food businesses

The Government has set out measures so that pubs and restaurants can operate as hot food takeaways and food delivery services to serve people having to stay at home.

Reigate & Banstead Borough Council wish to support those businesses considering this. In order to keep you and your customers safe, we’ve put together some guidance: Food delivery advice for food businesses.

Other sources of information

Keep and eye on the Reigate & Banstead Corona virus supporting our local business page which are being updated.

Follow us on social media and join our the Reigate & Banstead Business LinkedIn group

Enterprise Nation have relevant and up-to-date content on their website 

We will continue to send out information as we get it.  If you have any questions, please email Reigate & Bantead Borough Council Economic Prosperity team or ring us:

Simon Bland        01737 276303
Cath McDermott  01737 276008
Diane Dunkley     01737 276593
Lauren Read        01737 276055