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Accounting firms voice concerns with coronavirus grant schemes for SMEs

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by Startacus Admin

Coronavirus grants for business
Countingup, a VC backed startup building one financial hub for 1m small businesses, and nearly 250 accountancy firms have written to the UK Government to appeal for gaps in coronavirus support for small businesses to be bridged.

it's fair to say we've been reporting on concerns about the level of some support that the UK government is offering to the UK startup and small business community. From the Save our Startups campaign, to the recent EISA Survey focused on growth businesses, it's true that questions continue to be asked...

Now, Countingup and nearly 250 accountancy firms have written to the UK Government to appeal for gaps in coronavirus support for small businesses to be bridged. 

Representing over 70,000 small businesses, the letter voices the concerns and questions posed by small businesses, which accountants are hearing day in day out. 250 accountancy firms contributed, and put their name to the letter, over the bank holiday weekend.

The letter, published at covid19.countingup.com, states that, “More urgency is needed to award grants today. Many businesses face collapse today.“ It also states, Coronavirus grants for business“Entrepreneurs face their business being crushed.”

The letter highlights two broad themes:

1. Support those businesses left behind by the Job Retention Scheme (JRS) and Self-Employment Income Support Scheme (SEISS).

2. Provide more clarity on the process and timings of JRS and SEISS grants.

The letter sets out how limited companies with directors who remunerate themselves via dividends, sole traders who started trading since 6th April 1 2019 and sole traders with previous trading profits over £50,000 are all being unfairly left behind by the JRS and SEISS grants.

It also asks for clarity on when grants will be provided, that this process needs to be sped up, and certain wording used such as “trading profits” for the SEISS needs to be better defined.

Tim Fouracre, Countingup’s CEO, comments, “We welcome the government support that’s being made available to sole traders and limited companies. We simply appeal for it to be provided equitably across the range of small businesses represented in the UK.”

The full letter is set out on Countingup’s covid-19 microsite, covid19.countingup.com, which also offers calculators to help interpret the support and grants available to small businesses.




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Published on: 14th April 2020

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