Coronavirus Restart Grants – Eligibility
Restart Grants were announced recently as a way to support businesses in certain sectors to reopen safely after the current Lockdown. The eligibility guidance has now been updated, and applications can be made, though the grants will only be available from 1st April 2021.
Who can claim Restart Grants and how much is available?
- Non-essential retail can claim up to £6,000.
- Businesses in hospitality, accommodation, leisure, personal care and gym sectors can claim up to £18,000.
All Restart Grants amounts will come from the local councils, as previously.
Your business will need to fulfil the following:
- Be based in England
- Pay Business Rates
- Be in the non-essential retail, hospitality, accommodation, leisure, personal care or gym sectors.
- Be trading on 1st April 2021.
- Those in administration, insolvent or struck from the Companies House register.
- Those who have exceeded the permitted subsidy allowance (see below).
The Restart Grant scheme is covered by 3 subsidy allowances (a new concept since the recent Budget):
- Small Amounts of Financial Assistance Allowance – you’re allowed up to £335,000 (subject to exchange rates) over any period of 3 years.
- COVID-19 Business Grant Allowance – you’re allowed up to £1,600,000.
- COVID-19 Business Grant Special Allowance – if you have reached your limits under the Small Amounts of Financial Assistance Allowance and COVID-19 Business Grant Allowance, you may be able to access a further allowance of funding under these scheme rules of up to £9,000,000, provided certain conditions are met.
Grants under these 3 allowances can be combined for a potential total allowance of up to £10,935,000 (subject to exchange rates).
This allowance is unlikely to be an issue for any of our clients, but it’s important to be aware of the limits in case anyone mentions them and you’re concerned that you may be excluded as a result of earlier grants received; the chances are that they will have no effect on you at all!
As mentioned above, local authorities will issue Restart Grants, and will use their discretion to determine whether a business qualifies for them. The guidance from HMRC says that applications can be submitted now, although payments won’t be made until after the 1st April. At this stage we don’t know whether all local authorities have an application process in place, but recommend that you visit your council’s website and see what you can find.
I’m sure you have it bookmarked by now, but, just in case, you can find your local council’s website here if you need to.
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