HMRC issues urgent warning to SEISS grant recipients
Posted on: 04-11-2021
Enforcement surrounding Self-Employment Income Support Scheme (SEISS) grants is being stepped up. HMRC is now writing to some businesses insisting that they take certain steps within 30 days – or repay the amounts received. What’s going on?
The SEISS was set up to help sole traders and partnerships through the coronavirus pandemic. The first three tranches were paid between March 2020 and January 2021, and must be included as taxable turnover in 2020/21. However, HMRC is currently sending a letter to businesses regarding the 2019/20 returns.
While there are no grant payments to report on the 2019/20 returns, the letter is a reminder that being self-employed in 2019/20 was a prerequisite to claiming under the SEISS. The businesses being contacted are those which have not submitted a return for 2019/20 and those that have but with no self-employment or partnership pages included. It’s perfectly possible that this is just a simple omission. However, it is also possible that a business has misunderstood the eligibility criteria and made a claim in error.
If a business receives a letter it must take action and submit the missing information within 30 days or pay back the SEISS grants received. Of course, if it transpires the business wasn’t eligible for the grants, they will need to be paid back in any case, and a penalty may be charged
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