Updated Information on how small businesses and the self-employed can weather Covid 19 – November 5th, 2020

Ihelm Enterprises Covid 19 Updates Nov 5

Earlier today the Chancellor made a couple of announcements to the Commons about the support for businesses and some changes that were being made. I have outlined all of the changes to date below:

1) Coronavirus Job Retention Scheme

The Coronavirus Job Retention Scheme (furlough) has now been extended until the end of March 2021 with employees receiving 80% of their current salary for hours not worked, up to a maimum of £2,500/month. Employers will only be asked to ccover National Insurance Contributions and Employer Pension Contributions for the hours not worked.

The scheme can be used for employees for any amount of time and shift patterns, including furloughing full-time.

The scheme will still operate the same as it previously has – businesses will be able to claim either shortly before, during or after running their payroll, and they will be able to make claims from 11/11/2020. Any claims for subsequent months should be made by day 14 of the following month.

There is no requirement for employers/employees to have used the scheme before and any employee who was employed and on the payroll on 30/10/2020 and the RTI submission for that employee has been filed on or before 30/10/2020, are eligible to use the scheme.

The Chancellor has also stated that any employee that was on the payroll on 23/09/2020 and were made redundant or stopped working, can be re-employed and can be claimed for on the scheme. They must have been included on an RTI submission from 20/03/2020 to 23/09/2020.

The scheme will be reviewed in January 2021.

The government has said that full guidance will be published on 10/11/2020.

Further information can be found here: https://www.gov.uk/government/publications/extension-to-the-coronavirus-job-retention-scheme/extension-of-the-coronavirus-job-retention-scheme

2) Self-employed Income Support Scheme

The grant covering the period from November 2020 to January 2021 will now be for 80% of average trading profits for the whole period, up to a maximum of £7,500. The grant will be able to be claimed from 30/11/2020.

There will be a fourth grant which will cover February 2021 to April 2021, but the details will be announced at a later date.

Further Information can be found here: https://www.gov.uk/government/publications/self-employment-income-support-scheme-grant-extension/self-employment-income-support-scheme-grant-extension

3) Job Retention Bonus

The Job Retention Bonus scheme that was to be paid to employers in February 2021 for every employee they kept on has been put on hold and it will be reviewed at a later date.

4) Funding for Devolved Administrations

The additional funding for the devolved administrations has been increased from £14 billion to £16 billion.

5) Businesses that have had to close in England

Businesses that have had to close in England will be able to receive up to £3,000/month from their Local Authority. The amount a business receives will depend on the rateable value of their property.

6) Local Authorities in England

Local Authorities are being given an additional £1.1 billion that can be used for one-off payments to enable them to support businesses within their area more broadly.

7) Backdated Cash Grants for Tier 2/3 in England

All businesses in the hospitality, leisure and accommodation sector, in England that are in Tier 2 or 3 that have suffered from reduced demand due to local restrictions that were introduced between 01/08/2020 and 05/11/2020 will receive backdated grants of 70% of the value of closed grants up to a maximum of £2,100/month for that period.

The government will make the allocations to Local Authorities later this week with the view for the LAs to be able to start providing funding the following week.

8) Government Backed Loan Schemes

There are plans to extend the application deadline for the government backed loan schemes – which include Bounce Back Loans, Coronavirus Business Interruption Loans, Future Fund, Coronavirus Large Business Interruption Loans – to the end of January 2021.

The rules for the Bounce Back Loans are also going to be adjusted to allow any business that borrowed less than the maximum amount that could be claimed (lower of £50,000 or less than 25% of their turnover) to top-up their existing loan. This option will be available from next week and it can only be used once.

You can read more details about the Financial Support available for Jobs and Businesses here: https://assets.publishing.service.gov.uk/government/uploads/system/uploads/attachment_data/file/932977/ECONOMIC_SUPPORT_FACTSHEET_5_November.pdf

I am continually monitoring the updates that the government and other business-related departments release and will continue to share that information for as long as I feel that it is beneficial to all businesses in the UK.

The information and policies are continually being updated by the government, so I urge you to keep on top of the information by visiting the relevant website for your area.

UK:
https://www.gov.uk/government/publications/guidance-to-employers-and-businesses-about-covid-19/covid-19-support-for-businesses
Scotland: https://www.gov.scot/coronavirus-covid-19/
Wales: https://gov.wales/business-and-employers-coronavirus
Northern Ireland: https://www.nibusinessinfo.co.uk/

I will be trying to keep myself as informed as possible and will share relevant information on my fb business page: https://www.facebook.com/ihelmenterprises/

Updated Information on how small businesses and the self-employed can weather Covid 19 – November 1st, 2020

Ihelm Enterprises Covid 19 Update Nov 1st

Yesterday evening, October 31st 2020, the Prime Minister held a press conference to explain that England would be entering a National Lockdown from Thursday November 5th 2020 until Wednesday December 2nd 2020.  At that point, England will return to the new tier system that recently announced.  The actual rules and regulations surrounding the lockdown are being debated and voted on in Parliament on Wednesday November 4th so the following guidance may change slightly. However, I will continue to provide updates.

What does the national lockdown mean?

From November 5th, everyone is expected to stay at home apart from for the following reasons:

– to work if you cannot work from home
– education
– to shop for food and essentials
– exercise and recreation outside on your own, with your support bubble or with 1 other person who does not live in your household
– to care for others
– if you are a volunteer
– for childcare

People can no longer meet up with 5 people in outdoor public places as the rule of 6 has been suspended.  You can only meet up with members of your support bubble.

Children of parents who are separated are still allowed to travel between households.

It is advised that people avoid all but essential travel, though the government asks that these trips be kept to a minimum and that where possible, public transport is not used.

Overnight stays and holidays away from your primary residence – including holidays in the UK and abroad will not be allowed.  This includes staying in a second home. However, you can stay overnight for work purposes.

What is happening to businesses?

A number of businesses are going to have to close due to the lockdown, and this includes:
– all non-essential retail shops
– indoor and outdoor leisure facilities – including bowling alleys, leisure centres, gyms, sports facilities including swimming pools, golf courses and driving ranges, dance studios, climbing walls, riding centres, water and theme parks
– entertainment venues including cinemas,  theatres, museums, galleries, bingo halls, casinos, arcades, zoos, botanical gardens
– close contact service providers – beauty and nail salons, hairdressers, tattooists, massage parlours, spas, tanning salons, body and skin piercing services
– hospitality venues including pubs, restaurants and bars will close, takeaways can stay open but takeaway alcohol is not allowed.
– hotels, hostels and other accommodation businesses should only remain open for those who have to travel for work

Non-essential retail shops can provide click-and-collect services and delivery services.

This list is not exhaustive and further information can be found here: https://www.gov.uk/guidance/new-national-restrictions-from-5-november?utm_source=7bc5dcb3-89f3-4f85-9727-b8e92a3b168f&utm_medium=email&utm_campaign=govuk-notifications&utm_content=immediate#businesses-and-venues

Weddings and civil partnerships cannot take place except in exceptional circumstances.

Funerals are allowed but only a maximum of 30 people are able to attend.  The government recommends that only close family and friends attend.

Places of worship will be closed except for specific circumstances.

The government is once again asking everyone who can do so, to work from home.  Where that is not possible, for example, construction, manufacturing, or those who work in critical national infrastructure,  people can still travel to/from work

What about financial support?

The Job Retention Scheme which was due to end on October 31st, has been extended for 1 month.  Employees will be paid 80% of their wages (up to a maximum of £2,500).  The flexibility of the scheme will also continue which will allow employees to work where they can.

Employers will only be asked to pay the NI and pension contributions for staff for the month of November.

For employees to be eligible to use the JRS, the employee must have been on the employers PAYE payroll by 23:59 October 30th, 2020. The RTI submission notifying payment of that employee to HMRC must have been made on or before October 30th, 2020.

Business premises that are forced to close due to the lockdown will be eligible for grants of up to £3,000 per month under the Local Restrictions Support Grant.  Local Authorities are also being given £1.1 billion to help support local businesses more broadly with one-off payments.

Mortgage holidays that were due to close have also been extended.

You can read further information here: https://www.gov.uk/government/news/furlough-scheme-extended-and-further-economic-support-announced.

I am continually monitoring the updates that the government and other business-related departments release and will continue to share that information for as long as I feel that it is beneficial to all businesses in the UK.

The information and policies are continually being updated by the government, so I urge you to keep on top of the information by visiting the relevant website for your area.

UK:
https://www.gov.uk/government/publications/guidance-to-employers-and-businesses-about-covid-19/covid-19-support-for-businesses
Scotland: https://www.gov.scot/coronavirus-covid-19/
Wales: https://gov.wales/business-and-employers-coronavirus
Northern Ireland: https://www.nibusinessinfo.co.uk/

I will be trying to keep myself as informed as possible and will share relevant information on my fb business page: https://www.facebook.com/ihelmenterprises/

Updated Information on how small businesses and the self-employed can weather Covid 19 – October 22nd, 2020

Ihelm Enterprises Covid 19 Update October 22

Earlier today the Chancellor announced new measures to help support businesses during the pandemic.

Job Support Scheme
The Job Support Scheme, which starts on November 1st, 2020, has been changed so that now, employees only need to work a minimum of 20% of their usual hours (1 day a week) instead of at least 1/3 of their normal hours – with the employer paying for the hours the employee works. The employer will only have to contribute 5% (up to £125/month) towards the wages for the non-worked hours, instead of 1/3. The government will contribute 61.67% (up to £1,541.75/month) which is up from 1/3. This will ensure that the employee will receive at least 73% of their normal wages where they earn £3,125/month or less.

Any business that has had to legally close due to restrictions across England, Wales, Scotland and Northern Ireland, can access the Job Support Scheme – Closed. This will allow employees to be paid 2/3 of their normal pay up to a maximum of £2,083.33/month. The employer will need to initially pay the employee, but will then be able to be reimbursed by the government in arrears.

The Job Support Scheme – Open, and Job Support Scheme – Closed, with run from November 1st, 2020 to April 30th, 2021 with the terms being reviewed in January 2021. Employers will be able to claim in arrears from December 8th, 2020. An employer does not have to have previously used the Coronavirus Job Retention Scheme in order to use the Job Support Scheme. Using the Job Support Scheme will also not impact on claiming the Job Retention Bonus which is available in January 2021.

Self-Employed Income Support Scheme

The Chancellor has announced that the amount that will be paid to self-employed businesses which covers a three-month period from November 2020 to January 2021 has been increased from 20% to 40% of average monthly trading profits up to a maximum of £3,750.

Additional Grants for Businesses in High Alert Areas

Businesses, in sectors like hospitality, accommodation and leisure, that are still open but are struggling due to local restrictions, will be able to claim cash grants from their Local Authorities of up to £2,100/month, which will be backdated to August.

Properties that have a rateable value of £15,000 or under can apply for grants of £934/month.
Properties that have a rateable value over £15,000 and under £51,000 can apply for grants of £1,400.
Properties with rateable values over £51,000 can apply for grants of £2,100.

In addition, Local Authorities will also receive a 5% top-up amount to these implied grants to cover other businesses that are affected by local restrictions but don’t fit into the categories listed. It will be up to the Local Authorities to determine which businesses are eligible for the grants.

You can read the full press-release that was issued here.

I am continually monitoring the updates that the government and other business-related departments release and will continue to share that information for as long as I feel that it is beneficial to all businesses in the UK.

The information and policies are continually being updated by the government, so I urge you to keep on top of the information by visiting the relevant website for your area.

UK:
https://www.gov.uk/government/publications/guidance-to-employers-and-businesses-about-covid-19/covid-19-support-for-businesses
Scotland: https://www.gov.scot/coronavirus-covid-19/
Wales: https://gov.wales/business-and-employers-coronavirus
Northern Ireland: https://www.nibusinessinfo.co.uk/

I will be trying to keep myself as informed as possible and will share relevant information on my fb business page: https://www.facebook.com/ihelmenterprises/

Updated Information on how small businesses and the self-employed can weather Covid 19 – October 12th, 2020

Ihelm Enterprises Covid 19 Update Oct 12th

Earlier today the Prime Minister spoke to the Commons about the new 3-tier alert levels being rolled out across England. Tonight he discussed these tiers with the public in a press conference.

Tier 1 – Medium
The majority of England is under the first tier which is medium.

In this tier people will need to follow the national restrictions that are in place:
– don’t socialise in groups larger than 6 indoors or outdoors (unless a legal exemption applies) – follow the rule of 6
– businesses and venues can continue to operate in a Covid secure manner (unless they are to remain closed as stated in law)
– hospitality venues are required to only serve food and drink to those seated at tables and must close between 10pm and 5am
– any venue selling food for consumption off the premises can do so after 10pm as long as it is through delivery, click-and-collect or drive-through
– schools and universities remain open
– places of worship remain open, subject to the rule of 6
– weddings and funerals can still happen as long as they follow the restrictions outlined the other day
– exercise classes and organised sport can continue to take place outdoors or indoors if the rule of 6 is followed
– wear face coverings in areas where mandated
– follow social distancing
– work from home where you can
– plan ahead or avoid busy times and routes when travelling; walk or cycle if you can

Tier 2: High
Areas that are already under increased local restrictions will now be under Tier 2

– no mixing of households in any indoor setting – whether your own home or in a public place
– no socialising in a group of more than 6 outside (including in gardens or other spaces like beaches/parks, unless specific exemptions apply) – follow the rule of 6
– businesses and venues can continue to operate in a Covid secure manner (unless they are to remain closed as stated in law)
– hospitality venues are required to only serve food and drink to those seated at tables and must close between 10pm and 5am
– any venue selling food for consumption off the premises can do so after 10pm as long as it is through delivery, click-and-collect or drive-through
– schools and universities remain open
– places of worship remain open, subject to the rule of 6
– weddings and funerals can still happen as long as they follow the restrictions outlined the other day
– exercises classes and organised sport can continue to take place outdoors; indoor classes only permitted if it is possible for people to avoid mixing with people they do not live with or share a support bubble with, or if it is for youth/disability sport
– can continue to travel to venues or amenities that are open for work or education, but reduce the number of journeys you make where possible
– wear face coverings in areas where mandated
– follow social distancing
– work from home where you can
– plan ahead or avoid busy times and routes when travelling; walk or cycle if you can

Tier 3: Very High
At present only Liverpool is under this tier.

Even though there are base guidelines for this tier, the exact restrictions for each area can vary so please check the specific rules for your area by going here. All areas under this tier will be reviewed every 4 weeks.

At a minimum:
– no socialising with anyone you do not live with, or have formed a support bubble with, indoors, in private gardens, or at most outdoor hospitality venues and ticketed events
– no socialising in a group of more than 6 in an outdoor public space (parks, beach, countryside, public garden, sports venues) – follow the rule of 6
– pubs and bars MUST close – can only remain open where they are able to operate as a restaurant (they serve substantial meals and can only serve alcohol as part of a meal)
– schools and universities remain open
– places of worship remain open but no household mixing permitted
– weddings and funerals can still happen as long as they follow the restrictions outlined the other day; but no wedding receptions allowed
– exercises classes and organised sport can continue to take place outdoors; indoor classes only permitted if it is possible for people to avoid mixing with people they do not live with or share a support bubble with, or if it is for youth/disability sport
– avoid travelling outside the very-high alert level area you are in, or entering a very-high alert level, other than for work, education, youth services, to meet caring responsibilities, or if you are travelling through as part of a longer journey
– avoid overnight stays in another part of the UK if you are resident in a very-high alert area, or avoid staying overnight in a very-high alert area if you are resident elsewhere
– wear face coverings in areas where mandated
– follow social distancing
– work from home where you can
– can continue to travel to venues or amenities that are open for work or education, but reduce the number of journeys you make where possible

The government will speak with local authorities to also agree to add further restrictions which might include:
– restrictions preventing sale of alcohol in hospitality or closing all hospitality (except for takeaway and delivery)
– closing indoor and outdoor entertainment venues and tourist attractions
– closing leisure centres and gyms
– closing public buildings (libraries, community centres)
– closing personal care and close contact services or prohibiting highest-risk activities
– closing performing arts venues for the purposes of performing to audiences

You can read more about the alert levels by going here.

What financial help will I get if I have to close?

If your business has to close due to any of the restrictions, the Job Support Scheme is being extended to cover 2/3 of the wages of the employees for those businesses (up to a maximum of £2,100/month), and the government will pay those amounts. The business will also be able to receive a cash grant of up to £3,000/month instead of £1,500 every 3 weeks. Employers will not be required to contribute towards wages and will only be asked to cover NI Contributions and pension contributions. You can read more about this here.

I am continually monitoring the updates that the government and other business-related departments release and will continue to share that information for as long as I feel that it is beneficial to all businesses in the UK.

The information and policies are continually being updated by the government, so I urge you to keep on top of the information by visiting the relevant website for your area.

UK:
https://www.gov.uk/government/publications/guidance-to-employers-and-businesses-about-covid-19/covid-19-support-for-businesses
Scotland: https://www.gov.scot/coronavirus-covid-19/
Wales: https://gov.wales/business-and-employers-coronavirus
Northern Ireland: https://www.nibusinessinfo.co.uk/

I will be trying to keep myself as informed as possible and will share relevant information on my fb business page: https://www.facebook.com/ihelmenterprises/

Updated Information on how small businesses and the self-employed can weather Covid 19 – September 24th, 2020

Ihelm Enterprises Covid 19 Update Sept 24th

Earlier today the Chancellor addressed the MPs in the Commons to discuss further help that is going to be given to businesses to help them get through the current economic crisis and support jobs. I will try my very best to explain things as clearly and concisely as I can. Like with the other measures that were brought in, I expect further details will continue to be released over the coming weeks and I will make sure I provide any updates as and when they are released.

1) Job Support Scheme (JSS)
The furlough scheme will end on October 31st, 2020, however, from November 1st, a new scheme – the Job Support Scheme – will be in place for a period of 6 months. This scheme will allow workers who are working for at least 1/3 of their normal hours, to receive full pay for the hours they work, plus 1/3 of the wage for the hours not worked from the government and 1/3 of the wage for the hours not worked from the employer. The government will cap the amount they fund at 22% (or £697.92/month). It is open to all small- and medium-sized businesses who have a UK bank account and a UK PAYE scheme, and larger businesses can use the scheme only if they can show they have been adversely affected by covid-19. If a large business uses the scheme, they will not be able to make any capital distributions (dividend payments) while using the scheme. Employees can be moved on and off the scheme and work different hours, but the scheme must cover a 7-day working pattern. In order for an employer to use the scheme for an employee, they must have been on the payroll since at least 23/09/2020. Any employee who is on the JSS cannot be made redundant or put on notice. It is not restricted to employers who used the furlough scheme – even if an employer didn’t access the furlough scheme, they can use the JSS. It also does not affect an employer claiming the Job Retention Bonus. Employers will be reimbursed for the costs by the government after the work has been done and the employee has been paid.

2) Self-Employed Income Support Scheme (SEISS)
The SEISS will be extended for a further 6 months.
There will be two different taxable grants – the first one will cover 20% of the average monthly trading profits for a three-month period starting in November. The amount will be paid out in one single payment covering the 3 months and be for a total of up to £1875.00. The same eligibility criteria that have been used for the other two SEISS grants will still apply.
The second taxable grant will be from February 2021 to April 2021 but they haven’t yet said what the amount will be. They will be reviewing this and releasing the information later.

3) “Pay as You Grow” Scheme
Any business that took out a government-guaranteed loan (BBLS) will be able to have the payment terms extended from 6 years to 10 years allowing businesses to have lower monthly repayments. A business can move to interest-only payments (which they can use up to 3 times) or suspend payments if they are in real trouble for up to 6 months (which they can only do once and only after they have made 6 payments). The government has said that this will not affect someone’s credit rating. Any business that took out a Coronavirus Business Interruption Loan will also have their payment terms extended to be over 10 years.

The application for any of the four loans the government announced (BBLS/CBILS/CLBILS/Future Fund) has also been extended to November 30th, 2020.

The Chancellor has stated that a new loan scheme will be available in January, but they haven’t released any further details at this time.

4) VAT Deferral
The businesses that deferred their VAT payments that were due between March and June 2020, will not have to pay a lump sum at the end of March 2021, instead, they will be able to split the payments into smaller, interest-free payments over a period of 11 months, meaning the payments will be more manageable. A business will need to opt-in to take advantage of this new payment scheme and the opt-in process will be put in place by HMRC in early 2021.

5) VAT Reduction for Hospitality and Tourism Sector
The reduction of VAT from 20% to 5% for the hospitality and tourism sector was supposed to increase back to the normal VAT rate in January 2021, however, this will now not happen until March 31st, 2021.

6) Self-Assessment Income Tax Payments
Self-employed people who have tax payments due in January 2021 will be able to pay the amounts due over a longer period of time. If the tax debt is up to £30,000, people can go online and set up a 12-month payment plan to January 2022. If the tax debt is over £30,000, people will need to ring HMRC to set up a payment plan.

You can read the latest information here about the announcements made today: https://www.gov.uk/government/news/coronavirus-covid-19-what-has-changed-22-september

I am continually monitoring the updates that the government and other business-related departments release and will continue to share that information for as long as I feel that it is beneficial to all businesses in the UK.

The information and policies are continually being updated by the government, so I urge you to keep on top of the information by visiting the relevant website for your area.

UK:
https://www.gov.uk/government/publications/guidance-to-employers-and-businesses-about-covid-19/covid-19-support-for-businesses
Scotland: https://www.gov.scot/coronavirus-covid-19/
Wales: https://gov.wales/business-and-employers-coronavirus
Northern Ireland: https://www.nibusinessinfo.co.uk/

I will be trying to keep myself as informed as possible and will share relevant information on my fb business page: https://www.facebook.com/ihelmenterprises/

Updated Information on how small businesses and the self-employed can weather Covid 19 – September 22nd, 2020

Ihelm Enterprises Covid 19 Update Sept 22

Earlier today the Prime Minister addressed the MPs in the Commons to discuss the new restrictions that are being brought into force to help curb the rising infection numbers from Covid-19. The Prime Minister said these new restrictions could last 6 months and that it all boils down to the common sense and cooperation of the British public.

Here are the latest updates which affect England.

1) From Thursday Sept 24th, hospitality venues must close at 10pm. Takeaways can stay open, but can only do deliveries from 10pm onwards.

2) Pubs/restaurants/cafes must only provide table service – people can no longer place any orders at the bar. Takeaways can still operate.

3) Office workers are now being encouraged to work from home if they possibly can, but people can still go into their workplace if it is covid-secure and they need to in order to do their job or for their mental health.

4) Masks must now be worn by shop/hospitality venue staff and customers in all shops, restaurants, pubs etc – apart from when at the table when eating.

5) Masks must be worn by taxi drivers and passengers.

6) The opening of conference centres and the return of spectators to sporting events is not going ahead as planned on October 1st.

7) Adults participating in indoor organised sports must adhere to the rule of 6.

8) All guidance for businesses relating to Covid-19 will now be law and must be followed.

9) Fines will be issued by anyone breaking any of the rules. Penalties for not wearing a mask or gathering in groups of more than 6 will be a fine of £200 for the first offence. Businesses that do not follow the rules and comply, could face closure or fines of up to £10,000 for repeated breaches.

In Wales the pubs/bars/restaurants must close by 10pm from Thursday Sept 24th, and from Friday September 25th in Scotland.

You can read the latest information here about the announcements made today: https://www.gov.uk/government/news/coronavirus-covid-19-what-has-changed-22-september

Areas that are under local lockdown restrictions must also follow those additional guidelines – and in most cases, this means no mixing of households unless you are part of a support bubble or provide childcare (grandparents providing childcare to assist parents)

I am continually monitoring the updates that the government and other business-related departments release and will continue to share that information for as long as I feel that it is beneficial to all businesses in the UK.

The information and policies are continually being updated by the government, so I urge you to keep on top of the information by visiting the relevant website for your area.

UK:
https://www.gov.uk/government/publications/guidance-to-employers-and-businesses-about-covid-19/covid-19-support-for-businesses
Scotland: https://www.gov.scot/coronavirus-covid-19/
Wales: https://gov.wales/business-and-employers-coronavirus
Northern Ireland: https://www.nibusinessinfo.co.uk/

I will be trying to keep myself as informed as possible and will share relevant information on my fb business page: https://www.facebook.com/ihelmenterprises/

Updated Information on how small businesses and the self-employed can weather Covid 19 – September 21st, 2020

Ihelm Enterprises Covid 19 Update Sept 21

Over the weekend, the guidance for which businesses need to use the NHS Track and Trace system was updated to reflect the new legal requirement for designated venues to collect contact details and display the official NHS QR code posters.

From September 24th, 2020, not only will businesses and organisations in designated sectors do the following:
– ask at least one member of every party of customers or visitors to provide their name and contact details
– keep a record of all staff working on their premises and shift times on a given day and their contact details
– keep records of customers, visitors and staff for 21 days and provide data to NHS Test and Trace if requested
_ ahdere to General Data Protection Regulations (GDPR)
but they must also display an official NHS QR Code poster so customers/visitors can “check in” using the NHS Track and Trace App.

Businesses within the hospitality sector (pubs, restaurants and other venues) will also be required to ensure that anyone who visits these places provides their details – either through giving their contact information or scanning the NHS QR code BEFORE they are allowed entry into the venue. If anyone chooses not to supply their information, they must be refused entry to the building. Any venues that do not comply with these regulations will be fined.

Designated venues will need to keep the contact detail records of customers, visitors and staff for 21 days and provide them to NHS Test and Trace or local public health officials when asked, if they have not been captured through the NHS QR Code.

What sectors must follow the guidance in regards to NHS Test and Trace?

All businesses/establishments (whether they are indoor, outdoor, or mobile) must abide by the guidance about collecting contact details and displaying the NHS Test and Trace QR Code and includes the following sectors:
– hospitality (including pubs, bars, restaurants and cafes)
– tourism and leisure (including hotels, museums, cinemas, amusement arcades)
– close contact services (including beauticians, nail bars and salons, sports and massage therapists, tattooists, hairdressers, barbershops and tailors)
– facilities provided by local authorities (including community centres, libraries and village halls)

There is a full list of settings that must follow these guidelines here: https://www.gov.uk/guidance/maintaining-records-of-staff-customers-and-visitors-to-support-nhs-test-and-trace#list-of-settings

The requirement to obtain the contact details only applies to any on-site service, so if a cafe only provides takeaway, they do not need to comply with this requirement.

What information must a venue collect?

Every customer/visitor must be asked for the following details (unless they have scanned the NHS Test and Trace QR Code):
– their name (if there is more than one person, you only need to record the name of the lead member of the group and how many people there were)
– a contact telephone number (if there is no phone number than an e-mail address can be requested, and if they don’t have an e-mail address either you can ask for a postal address
– date of visit, when they arrived, and if possible when they left
– the name of the assigned staff member

If someone chooses to use the QR Code – the venue should check their phone screen to ensure the person has correctly checked in.

If a business/venue already has a system for recording their customers and visitors – an advanced booking system – the bookkeeping system can be used as the source of information that’s needed to be collected.

The data collected must be protected as per the GDPR guidelines and you must not use the information for any other purpose than to provide the details to the NHS Test and Trace system.

You can generate your official NHS QR Poster online by going to here: https://www.gov.uk/create-coronavirus-qr-poster

There are of course some exemptions to this new requirement.

A business/venue does not need to ask for the contact details or ask that the NHS QR code be scanned if:
– the person is a police officer or emergency responder on duty:
– the person is visiting the site to make a delivery or collection of goods
– if the person is under the age of 16
– if the person doesn’t have the mental capacity to provide their contact details

What happens if you don’t comply with the new requirements?

Any business/venue that does not comply with this new requirement could face a fine starting at £1,000 for a first fixed penalty.

The full article can be found here: https://www.gov.uk/guidance/maintaining-records-of-staff-customers-and-visitors-to-support-nhs-test-and-trace

There is further information on the NHS Covid 19 page as well: https://faq.covid19.nhs.uk/category/?id=CAT-01043&parentid=CAT-01027

I am continually monitoring the updates that the government and other business-related departments release and will continue to share that information for as long as I feel that it is beneficial to all businesses in the UK.

The information and policies are continually being updated by the government, so I urge you to keep on top of the information by visiting the relevant website for your area.

UK:
https://www.gov.uk/government/publications/guidance-to-employers-and-businesses-about-covid-19/covid-19-support-for-businesses
Scotland: https://www.gov.scot/coronavirus-covid-19/
Wales: https://gov.wales/business-and-employers-coronavirus
Northern Ireland: https://www.nibusinessinfo.co.uk/

I will be trying to keep myself as informed as possible and will share relevant information on my fb business page: https://www.facebook.com/ihelmenterprises/

Updated Information on how small businesses and the self-employed can weather Covid 19 – September 14th, 2020

Ihelm Enterprises Covid 19 Update Sept 14 2020

Earlier in July, the Chancellor announced a scheme called the Kickstart Scheme that would help get young people who are at risk of long term unemployment back into work. THis scheme was also going to help businesses to recover from the effects of Covid 19.

However, on Sept 2nd, when the scheme was officially launched, the government stated that in order for a business to be able to take advantage of this scheme, they had to provide 30 positions. While this would be easy enough for large businesses to do, this puts a lot of small and medium-sized businesses at a disadvantage. Various organisations have come together to help these smaller businesses by creating a hub so that lots of small businesses can join together and be able to hire staff through the Kickstart Scheme. You will need to check your local area as to which hubs are working to help facilitate the scheme – but good places to start are your local Chamber of Commerce, Growth Hubs, your local Council and even your accountant/bookkeeper.

What does the scheme do?

The Kickstart Scheme is designed to help young people aged between 16 and 24 who are claiming Universal Credit to find employment for a 6-month period. During their employment, the employee should be developing the skills and experience needed to find work after they have completed their 6-month placement.

How does it work?

The government will cover all of the costs related to hiring someone through the scheme for a 6-month period. After that time, if you wanted to keep the employee on, you would need to fund their employment yourself as they will no longer be part of the Kickstart scheme. They will fund 100% of the National Minimum Wage for that employee for 25 hours/week, all employer NI contributions and the minimum employer automatic enrolment contributions. The employer can also apply for an additional amount of £1,500 per job placement to help with setup costs, support and training. The additional grant should be paid to you within 7 days of the placement being accepted.

As the employer, you would be required to pay out all of the payroll costs first, and then you would claim these back through the scheme – evidence will be required to prove that the employee is still employed as well as all of the costs. Currently, the employer would claim for the costs every 2 months, but this is continually under review and various business groups are hoping to have this time period lowered, as originally it was going to be that the employer would need to fund all of the costs until the end of the 6-month placement.

It would be the employer’s responsibility to ensure that they are set up as an employer with HMRC and have a pension scheme set up. The employer would also be liable for all of the costs associated with running a payroll scheme – however, the additional grant of £1,500 could be used to offset these costs.

Once a 6-month placement has been completed, you can hire another person through the Kickstart Scheme to fulfil that role.

The employer would need to supply a job description outlining what the position entails and this would then be advertised to any eligible participant through the DWP (if you are going through a hub, they would be your point of contact). Once an employer has received the applications, it will be their responsibility to go through the process of interviews and hiring the employee. If an employer hires an employee, they would notify their point of contact and the process of filling the role and applying for the additional grant will be completed.

The Kickstart Scheme is going to be running until December 2021 and you can use the scheme for as long as you are eligible.

Who can use the scheme?

The scheme is open to all businesses within England, Scotland and Wales. Depending on the size of your business, you can either apply directly to the government: https://www.gov.uk/guidance/check-if-you-can-apply-for-a-grant-through-the-kickstart-scheme or by going through one of the local hubs helping smaller businesses. To apply through a local hub, you would need to contact them directly to find out their process.

Businesses that would like to use the Kickstart Scheme must ensure that these job placements are not replacing existing or planned vacancies, or cause existing employees/contractors to lose or reduce their employment. The positions should also not require people to understand extensive training in order to begin the job placement.

Within your application to the scheme, you will need to demonstrate how you will help participants to develop their skills and experience in order to get long-term work after the placement ends. This can include things like career advice, setting goals, helping with CV and interview preparation, supporting them with basic skills (attendance, timekeeping and teamwork).

How do I become a facilitator?

If you would like to become a representative of a group of businesses so that you can share the 30 job placements between multiple businesses, you would need to apply to become a representative.

To be eligible for this type of position, you must have experience of managing partnership agreements with third parties and robust financial and governance processes to manage the application.

You can read more about how to become a representative by going here: https://www.gov.uk/guidance/check-if-you-can-apply-for-a-grant-as-a-representative-of-a-group-of-employers-through-the-kickstart-scheme.

I am continually monitoring the updates that the government and other business-related departments release and will continue to share that information for as long as I feel that it is beneficial to all businesses in the UK.

The information and policies are continually being updated by the government, so I urge you to keep on top of the information by visiting the relevant website for your area.

UK:
https://www.gov.uk/government/publications/guidance-to-employers-and-businesses-about-covid-19/covid-19-support-for-businesses
Scotland: https://www.gov.scot/coronavirus-covid-19/
Wales: https://gov.wales/business-and-employers-coronavirus
Northern Ireland: https://www.nibusinessinfo.co.uk/

I will be trying to keep myself as informed as possible and will share relevant information on my fb business page: https://www.facebook.com/ihelmenterprises/

Updated Information on how small businesses and the self-employed can weather Covid 19 – August 14th, 2020

Ihelm Enterprises Covid 19 Update Aug 14 2020

Last night the government made an announcement about businesses in England that were stopped from opening 2 weeks ago.

All of those businesses are now going to be allowed to re-open from August 15th, 2020 as long as they follow certain guidelines to ensure that they are operating a Covid-19 secure environment.

This includes:
– bowling alleys, skating rinks, soft play centres, and casinos
– indoor theater, music and performance venues are allowed to re-open for socially distanced performances
– wedding receptions that have a sit-down meal and no more than 30 guests can take place
– pilots of some sporting events will be held to determine whether it is safe for spectators to return
– beauty salons that offer close contact services like facials, eyebrow treatments, eyelash treatments, makeup application and microblading can now re-open and offer all of those treatments
– pilots will also be taking place at conference venues to see if business events can start to happen from October 1st at the earliest

Nightclubs and sexual entertainment venues are to continue to remain closed.

All businesses will still need to ensure they are operating in a Covid Secure way, so they will need to make sure that they are following the guidelines for their sector as laid out by the government. The guidance for each sector can be found here: https://www.gov.uk/guidance/working-safely-during-coronavirus-covid-19

I am continually monitoring the updates that the government and other business-related departments release and will continue to share that information for as long as I feel that it is beneficial to all businesses in the UK.

The information and policies are continually being updated by the government, so I urge you to keep on top of the information by visiting the relevant website for your area.

UK:
https://www.gov.uk/government/publications/guidance-to-employers-and-businesses-about-covid-19/covid-19-support-for-businesses
Scotland: https://www.gov.scot/coronavirus-covid-19/
Wales: https://gov.wales/business-and-employers-coronavirus
Northern Ireland: https://www.nibusinessinfo.co.uk/

I will be trying to keep myself as informed as possible and will share relevant information on my fb business page: https://www.facebook.com/ihelmenterprises/

Updated Information on how small businesses and the self-employed can weather Covid 19 – July 20th, 2020

Ihelm Enterprises Covid 19 Update July 20

Last week on July 17th, the Prime Minister held a press conference to update England on some of the new changes that are going to be taking place. The government now feels that as more is known about Covid-19, hot spots of infection can be dealt with at a more local level as opposed to a national level. This will mean that local authorities will have more power to initiate a local lockdown or restrictions for their area. This could include closing specific premises, shutting public outdoor spaces and cancelling events. It is a very good idea that you keep an eye on your local area and make sure you are following all of their guidelines in regards to any local restrictions/lockdowns. The government has also announced the further lifting of some of the current restrictions that affect businesses and the economy – but like all other timetables provided, these are conditional on the rate of infection and how well everyone plays their part in controlling the virus.

1) From August 1st, the government will update the advice about going to work and it will be up to the employers to decide how their staff can work safely. Employers are encouraged to consult closely with their employees and if they wish the staff to return to working in the workplace, they must ensure it is Covid Secure.

2) From August 1st, most of the remaining leisure settings (bowling, skating rinks and casinos) will be allowed to re-open.

3) From August 1st beauticians will be able to provide close contact services like eyelash treatments.

4) Indoor performances to a live audience will be able to restart from August 1st, subject to the success of pilots that are currently being run.

5) Business events and conferences will be allowed to resume from October 1st as long as the infection rate stays down. This means that face-to-face networking events can start to be done again. Again, there will be very clear guidelines that must be followed for each event to take place. You can find the full guidance here: https://www.gov.uk/guidance/working-safely-during-coronavirus-covid-19/the-visitor-economy

All businesses will still need to ensure they are operating in a Covid Secure way, so they will need to make sure that they are following the guidelines for their sector as laid out by the government. The guideance for each sector can be found here: https://www.gov.uk/guidance/working-safely-during-coronavirus-covid-19

As well as the announcements by the Prime Minister on Tuesday, the government has updated some of the information pages about the various schemes that are available. There are videos on each of the different schemes that the government has made available to businesses and you can access them here: https://www.gov.uk/guidance/help-and-support-if-your-business-is-affected-by-coronavirus-covid-19. The videos cover what the scheme is for and how you make a claim through the scheme.

I am continually monitoring the updates that the government and other business-related departments release and will continue to share that information for as long as I feel that it is beneficial to all businesses in the UK.

The information and policies are continually being updated by the government, so I urge you to keep on top of the information by visiting the relevant website for your area.

UK:
https://www.gov.uk/government/publications/guidance-to-employers-and-businesses-about-covid-19/covid-19-support-for-businesses
Scotland: https://www.gov.scot/coronavirus-covid-19/
Wales: https://gov.wales/business-and-employers-coronavirus
Northern Ireland: https://www.nibusinessinfo.co.uk/

I will be trying to keep myself as informed as possible and will share relevant information on my fb business page: https://www.facebook.com/ihelmenterprises/