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Self-employment income support scheme: checking eligibility and claiming

You will undoubtedly have seen reference to the scheme in our recent updates as well as elsewhere in the news media and your own industry press releases.

The scheme applies to all sole traders and partners in partnerships or LLPs for whom annual reported profits are £50,000 or less and for whom trading profits constitute more than 50% of total annual income. If income from other sources exceeds income from self employment, or if your self-employed profits are more than £50,000, you will not qualify. Please also remember that you need to still be in self employment to qualify.

You will already know that the claim is calculated at 80% of your average monthly trading profits as reported on your 2017, 2018 and 2019 tax returns, capped to a maximum of £2,500 per month, or £7,500 in total.

Checking eligibility

The purpose of this email is to inform you that it is now possible to check your eligibility for support directly with HMRC. Find the relevant portal here

We strongly recommend that you do the following:

  1. Check your eligibility directly on the HMRC portal. You will need your unique tax reference and NI number to do so. Both will be shown on your last tax return. If you do not have this, a copy is available in OpenSpace. The link to OpenSpace is here: If you cannot find this information, please let us know.
  2. If the results of the check show you are not eligible and there is no obvious reason for this, please check again after 24 hours. We have seen that the site can give false negative results. If you continue to get the same response, let us know and we will check.

Making the claim

Assuming you are eligible, the support must be claimed on line. The portal to do this is not yet available but will be launched on 13 May. Our understanding is that we will not be able to make the claim for you, but it must be done by you using your own HMRC gateway ID and password. Please note that we access your HMRC account using our agent gateway credentials and we do not have any details relating to your own HMRC gateway account. If you do not have one set up, you will need to do so before attempting to make a claim for support. The process is straightforward and can be done here:

To make the claim, you will need to:

  • Provide your tax reference and NI number
  • Provide bank details
  • Confirm your business has been adversely affected by Covid-19

We expect the process to be straightforward. If you have any problems, please contact us. The team will be on hand to help.

Once claimed, we believe payment will be made by early June.

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