30-Sep-21: End of most COVID support measures for SME’s

6th July 2021

When COVID directly impacted upon the UK in Spring 2020, the Government introduced a range of measures specifically targeted to help businesses survive the expected period of financial strain. Such businesses, that are still here, should now be planning ahead for when this support is gradually unwound:

21-Jun-21

  • Deadline for arranging with HMRC when to repay COVID related (ie between 20-Mar-20 and 30-Jun-20) deferred VAT.

30-Jun-21

  • End of period of statutory relief from wrongful (ie insolvent) trading claims possibly being made against a director personally.
  • 100% business rates relief for retail, hospitality and leisure businesses will dilute to 67% relief until 31-Mar-22.
  • Government furlough wages subsidy reducing from 80% to 70%.

30-Sep-21

  • End of moratorium for creditors being able to file:
    • Statutory demands.
    • Winding up petitions.
  • End of furlough wage subsidies scheme.
  • Temporarily 5% reduced VAT rate for hospitality and tourism to increase to 12.5%.
  • Deadline for claiming the 5th, and final, SEISS support grant for the self-employed (covering the period May-21 to Sep-21).

31-Dec-21

  • Government backed Recovery Loan Scheme ends.

25-Mar-22

  • End of moratorium on landlords evicting commercial tenants.

Also during this time, businesses that applied for COVID related bank loans (CBILS & BBLS) are going to have to start making repayments once the initial repayment holiday period ends.

Even after Government support, COVID has been a mixed bag for businesses.  Most have struggled on, with suppressed results, and often with more debt. But we have also seen:

  • More owner exits, through voluntary liquidation or an early retirement related trade sale,
  • Businesses going bust,
  • Some taking advantage of new market opportunities and thriving,
  • Many doing quite nicely on the back of Government support and reduced discretionary spending,
  • Some individuals who were laid off now taking the leap of faith to start their own business.

As always with running a business, the best entrepreneurs will now once again be planning for how to navigate the challenges ahead, and preserve their cashflow, as the remaining support measures end.

 

Blog entry by: Ian Piper



 
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