COVID-19: New business support available

by | Mar 24, 2020 | Blog

From Monday 23rd March 2020, businesses will be able to access government support to keep operating in the face of the global economic emergency brought on by coronavirus.

The two schemes, outlined below, will give businesses access to more than £330 billion of loans and guarantees to continue operating as the government delivers on its commitment to do everything it can to support business and manage cash flows during this difficult time.

  • The Coronavirus Business Interruption Loan Scheme which will provide government-backed loans of up to £5 million to small and medium businesses.
  • The Bank of England’s Covid Corporate Financing Facility which will provide a quick and cost-effective way to raise working capital for those large firms who need it.

Further support from HMRC regarding filing accounts with Companies House has also been released. Guidance regarding on this can be found below.

Coronavirus Business Interruption Loan Scheme

For small and medium sized businesses, the new Coronavirus Business Interruption Loan Scheme is now available for applications. This scheme will help any viable business with a turnover of up to £45m to access government-backed finance of up to £5 million. Interest payments and any lender-levied fees for businesses will be covered by the Government for an initial period of up to twelve months.

The government will provide lenders with a guarantee of 80% on each facility to give lenders further confidence in continuing to provide finance to SMEs. The scheme is available through more than 40 accredited lenders, which are listed on the British Business Bank website.

To find out more, please click here.

To view the list of accredited lenders, click here.

The Covid Corporate Financing Facility

The Bank of England’s new lending facility for larger firms – the Covid Corporate Financing Facility – is now open for applications.

By purchasing short-term corporate debt – known as commercial paper – the scheme provides a quick and cost-effective way to raise working capital for companies who are fundamentally strong but are experiencing severe disruption to cashflows, helping businesses across a range of sectors to pay wages and suppliers.

The scheme is open to firms that can demonstrate that they were in sound financial health prior to the impact of Coronavirus. Companies who wish to use the scheme do not need to have issued commercial paper before.

To find out more, click here.

Government Information Campaign

A government information campaign has also launched today to ensure businesses are aware of the support available to them and how to access it. In addition to a new central website, the campaign will use media channels including radio, social media and television to reach businesses eligible for help.

The Chancellor of the Exchequer, Rishi Sunak, said:

“We are working round the clock to do whatever it takes to protect our people and businesses. That means that we are not only taking unprecedented action but doing so at unprecedented speed, because we know that businesses and their employees need help now.”

This builds on the Chancellor’s announcement on Friday of further support for firms and employees, meaning that businesses should have the access to the funds they need during this difficult period. Further measures will be announced to ensure larger and medium sized businesses will be able to access the credit they need.

To learn more, please click here.

Filing Accounts With Companies House

If Coronavirus (COVID-19) has affected your company and you need more time to file your accounts, you should act before your filing deadline.

All companies must send their accounts, reports and confirmation statements to Companies House every year. If a company’s accounts are filed late, the law imposes an automatic penalty.

Your company should take appropriate measures to ensure accounts are filed on time. You should also file your accounts online if you’re able to.

If, immediately before the filing deadline, it becomes apparent that accounts will not be filed on time due to your company being affected by Coronavirus (COVID-19), you may make an application to extend the period allowed for filing.

Before making the application, please talk to your designated Client Partner by sending an email or calling 01454 619900. 

To apply for more time, please click here.

Late Filing Penalties 

If you do not apply for an extension and your accounts have been filed late, an automatic penalty will be imposed. The registrar has very limited discretion not to collect a penalty.

Each appeal is treated on a case-by-case basis, and we already have policies in place to deal with appeals based upon unforeseen poor health. Appeals based upon COVID-19 will be considered under these policies.

To read more, click here.

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