22nd October 2020

Both the Scottish and UK Governments have, in the past two days, announced changes and updates to existing support packages to help businesses affected by the new COVID-19 restrictions. This is a fast-moving situation and we anticipate further changes coming when the Scottish Government announces further details of its tiered restrictions, but in the interim thought it would be helpful to summarise what we know so far.

COVID-19 Business Hardship Fund

  • For businesses that may remain open but are directly impacted by the restrictions, the maximum hardship fund grant will increase to £2,155.
  • All grants will be administered by local authorities. The increase will be automatic and businesses that have already applied for a grant will not have to re-apply.
  • The upper limit for those applying for multiple premises has been increased to £14,000.

You can check eligibility and apply via the Highland Council (note that their page has not been updated with the new figures as of this email).

Job Support Scheme

  • Employer contribution for unworked hours reduced from 33% to 5%, with Government contribution increasing to 61.67% (to a maximum of £1541.75 per month)
  • Minimum working hours requirement for employees reduced from 33% to 20%

Further details can be found in today’s announcement by the Chancellor.

Self-Employment Income Support Scheme

  • The amount of profits covered will increase from 20% to 40%, with the maximum grant increasing from £1,875 to £3,750

Details of the Self-Employment Income Support Scheme grant extension can be found on GOV.UK.

We understand that Scottish Government will be introducing a new system of business support to complement their new “levels” approach to localised restrictions. As soon as we have details of this and what will be available to Chamber members, we will let you know.

Got a good news story you’d like to share? Get in touch with the Chamber today!

E: info@caithnesschamber.com
T: 01847 890076