How to claim the fifth Self-Employment Income Support Scheme (SEISS) grant, image of someone wiping a table | Crunch

HMRC will allow you to apply for the fifth and final Self-Employed Income Support Scheme grant (SEISS) in July 2021.

As was the case for the first four SEISS grants, accountants can't apply on behalf of their clients.

You’ll be eligible for the fifth grant based on your personal tax returns. HMRC will contact you in mid-July to give you a date when you can make your claim from. The date will be provided either by email, text message, letter or within the online service.

You can claim the fifth grant if you think that your business profit will be impacted by coronavirus (COVID-19) between 1st May 2021 and 30th September 2021.

HMRC’s online service to claim the fifth grant will be available from late July 2021. You’ll need to confirm that you meet other eligibility criteria when you make your claim.

You must make your claim online by 30th September 2021.

Who can claim

You can claim the fifth SEISS grant if you meet all criteria in the following three stages.

Stage 1: Your trading status and when you must have traded

You must be a self-employed individual or a member of a partnership. You must also have traded in both tax years:

  • 2019/2020 (tax year ended 5th April 2020)
  • 2020/2021 (tax year ended 5th April 2021).

Stage 2: Tax returns and trading profits

You must have:

  • submitted your 2019/2020 personal tax return on or before 2nd March 2021
  • trading profits from your business of no more than £50,000
  • trading profits at least equal to your non-trading income.

Non-trading income is any money that you make outside of your business. For example, if you also have a part-time job, PAYE income or a pension.

If you’re not eligible based on the trading profits in your 2019/2020 tax return, HMRC will look back at previous years.

Stage 3: Deciding if you can claim

When you decide to make your claim you must tell HMRC that you:

  • intend to keep trading in the 2021/2022 tax year
  • reasonably believe there will be a significant reduction in your trading profits due to the impact of COVID-19 between 1st May 2021 and 30th September 2021

Information you will need to claim

The fifth grant is different from previous grants. In most cases, when making your claim you’ll need to tell HMRC about your business turnover so they can work out your grant amount. Business turnover includes the income, fees, sales or money earned or received by your self-employed business.

To make your claim, you’ll need two different turnover figures. You’ll need to work out your turnover for:

  • a 12-month period starting between 1st April 2020 and 6th April 2020 (for instance 6th April 2020 to 5th April 2021)
  • either the 2019/2020 or 2018/2019 years

HMRC will review these figures to work out how much grant you’re entitled to.

You won't have the necessary turnover figures if you started trading in the 2019/2020 tax year and did not trade in the following tax years:

  • 2018/2019
  • 2017/2018
  • 2016/2017.

How much you’ll get

If your claim is based on the two turnover amounts highlighted above, HMRC will calculate your entitlement based on how much your turnover is reduced by, as shown below.

If your turnover is reduced by

You’ll be entitled to

Maximum grant amount

30% or more 80% of 3 months’ average trading profits £7,500
Less than 30% 30% of 3 months’ average trading profits £2,850

You can check HMRC’s website for more information and some worked examples.

How to make a claim

The online service for the fifth grant will be available from late July 2021.

HMRC will contact you in mid-July to give you a date that you can make your claim from. It will be given to you either by email, text message, letter or within the online service.

You can check a list of genuine HMRC contacts if you receive any suspicious texts, calls or emails claiming to be from HMRC as this may be a scam.

How the grant is treated for tax

The grant is subject to Income Tax and self-employed National Insurance Contributions. It must be reported on your 2021/2022 Self Assessment tax return.

The grant also counts towards your annual allowance for pension contributions. SEISS grants are not counted as ‘access to public funds’ and you can claim the grant on all categories of work visa.

Contacting HMRC

You can contact HMRC if you cannot get the help you need online.

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Lucinda Watkinson
Head of Accounting
Updated on
July 19, 2021

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