Happy New Year to all THP clients and readers of our blog. Today we’re going to cover Omicron support for businesses and the extended Self-Assessment tax return and payment deadlines.

Self-Assessment deadlines extended 

If you’re worried about completing your tax return and paying the tax you owe before the normal 31st January deadline, there’s some good news for you.

Government has recognised that, because of COVID-19, many people are finding it difficult to complete their tax returns before the end of January. The problem has been compounded by staff shortages at some accountancy firms, caused by sickness and self-isolation.

As a result, HMRC has announced two important Self-Assessment changes.

While HMRC maintains the Self-Assessment tax return deadline remains 31st January, it is effectively offering two penalty waivers.

  • You will not receive a late-filing penalty as long as you submit your tax return by 28th February 2022.
  • You will not receive a late-payment penalty if you pay your tax in full or set up a Time to Pay arrangement by 1st April 2022.

However, if you can submit your tax return and pay the tax due by 31st January 2022, we strongly recommend that you do so. This is because interest will be payable from 1st February 2022, meaning late returns will leave you out of pocket.  

Omicron support for businesses

Over the Christmas period, the government announced a series of support packages for businesses most affected by the surge in the Omicron variant of COVID-19.

On Friday 7th January 2022, government delivered millions of pounds worth of funding to councils across the country. They will be responsible for distributing the funds.

So, what are the support packages?

Grants for hospitality, leisure and accommodation businesses

Many businesses in these sectors have seen fewer customers and experienced an increase in cancellations.

If you offer in-person services in a fixed rate-paying premises, you can apply for a one-off grant of up to £6,000 per premises. How much you can claim depends on the rateable value of the premises. The government has provided £635 million to cover these grants in England.

  • Rateable value of more than £51,000: a £6,000 grant
  • Between £15,000 and £51,000: a £4,000 grant
  • Rateable value of £15,000 or under: £2,667

If you believe you are eligible for a grant, you will need to apply via your local council. You can find the relevant local authority here.

Grants for businesses in other sectors

Government recognises that the Omicron variant is causing problems for other sectors. It gives the example of firms that supply the hospitality, leisure and personal care services, which have seen orders fall.

Businesses in this category are able to apply for a discretionary Additional Restrictions Grant. Government has topped up this scheme with an extra £102 million.

Again, you need to apply to your local council for this type of grant. Authorities have been instructed to allocate the funding to businesses most in need. You can find out more details about the scheme here.

Culture Recovery Fund

The government has also added an extra £30 million to the Culture Recovery Fund. This is targeted at museums, cinemas, theatres and heritage organisations.

This fund is open to cultural organisations that can demonstrate they are at risk of ceasing to trade viably within 12 weeks of their application.

You need to apply by 4th February 2022. However, before this you need to make a permission-to-apply request. You must do this by midday on 18th January 2022.

Generally, you can apply for between £25,000 and £3 million (£1 million if you are a for-profit organisation).

You can learn more about the scheme and how to apply via the Arts Council website.

Need help?

If you are a THP client and you need help with either your Self-Assessment tax return or advice on any government support, please get in touch with your account manager.

Need further advice on any of the topics being discussed? Get in touch and see how we can help.

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About Jon Pryse-Jones

Since joining THP in 1978, Jon Pryse-Jones has been hands on with every area of the business. Now specialising in strategy, business planning, and marketing, Jon remains at the forefront of the growth and development at THP.

An ideas man, Jon enjoys getting the most out of all situations, “I act as a catalyst for creative people and encourage them to think outside the box,” he says, “and I’m not afraid of being confrontational. It often leads to a better result for THP and its clients.”

Jon’s appreciation for THP extends to his fellow team members and the board.  “They really know how to run a successful business,” he says.  He’s keen on IT and systems development as critical to success, and he continues to guide THP to be at the cutting edge and effective.

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