Farmers urged to think before rushing into coronavirus claims

Farming Monthly National|June 2020

Farmers urged to think before rushing into coronavirus claims
Many farmers and agribusinesses will have been inundated with information on the various grants and loans available as part of the Government’s response to help businesses during the Coronavirus pandemic, says Mike Butler, partner in the specialist team at Chartered Accountants, PKF-Francis Clark.

Before business owners make any type of claim, it is critical that they make entirely sure that they qualify to receive the support offered.

In particular claims under the Self Employed Income Support Scheme (SEISS), the income support grant available for self-employed and partners in partnerships, requires the claimant to assess that business has had to ‘scale down or temporarily stop trading’ in order to make a claim as set out on the Government website.

Whilst many farmers may feel that there has been some impact from Coronavirus on their businesses, it important that all claimants are not only satisfied that their businesses have been sufficiently affected to warrant a claim but also they are able to justify such claims should there be later scrutiny but HMRC and other Government authorities.

The same considerations should have been given before accessing funds through the Bounce Back Loan Scheme (BBL). To make a claim, Government rules on eligibility restrict claims for funding to businesses that have been or are being ‘adversely impacted by coronavirus’.

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June 2020