Government advice on what is included in ‘key workers’ can be found here
Parents whose work is critical to the COVID-19 response include those who work in health and social care and in other key sectors outlined in the Government’s advice.
Schools, and all childcare providers, are being asked to continue to provide care for a limited number of children - children who are vulnerable and children whose parents are critical to the Covid-19 response and cannot be safely cared for at home.
Food and other necessary goods
This includes those involved in food production, processing, distribution, sale and delivery, as well as those essential to the provision of other key goods (for example hygienic and veterinary medicines).
If your work is critical to the COVID-19 response, or you work in one of the critical sectors listed in Government advice and you cannot keep your child safe at home, then your children will be prioritised for education provision. BVA is lobbying for critical business status for veterinary businesses so as to continue to support animal health and welfare.
There are a number of support systems that you can avail of as a business to support employees as outlined below.
Job Retention Scheme
Employees can be furloughed which is also known as the Government Coronavirus Job Retention Scheme. It means that 80% of employee gross pay (up to £2,500) will be covered. This was put in place on 1st March 2020 and extends to 31st October and it can be back dated. From the start of August, furloughed workers will be able to return to work part-time with employers being asked to pay a percentage towards the salaries of their furloughed staff. The employer payments will substitute the contribution the government is currently making, ensuring that staff continue to receive 80% of their salary, up to £2,500 a month. Detailed information on the Coronavirus Job Retention Scheme is available here.
Deferring of VAT and Tax payments
Payment of VAT due in March-June can be deferred to April 2021. If you’re a UK VAT registered business and have a VAT payment due between 20 March 2020 and 30 June 2020, you have the option to defer the payment until a later date or pay the VAT due as normal. HMRC will not charge interest or penalties on any amount deferred. See Deferral of VAT payments here.
For income tax, self-assessment payments on account due in July can be deferred to January 2021. Information is available here. You can also negotiate with HMRC to obtain a more generous application of its time-to-pay scheme details of which are available here.
Statutory Sick Pay (SSP) relief for all SME’s
SSP of 2 weeks per employee due to Covid-19 is allowed in the following instances
- For those with clinical signs or isolating due to others in the household
- The employee must be on the books on 28/02/2020 and the company must have had <250 employees on that date
- Full details are available here.
Loans and grants for businesses
BVA’s comprehensive guide covers the following:
- Grants for Businesses
- Rates Relief
- Business Interruption Loans for SME and large Businesses
- Rent Protections
It includes information for businesses in England, Scotland, Wales and Northern Ireland and is available here
Welsh Government has issued guidance to employers and businesses on COVID-19 to enable veterinary practices to access and benefit from Welsh Government’s business support initiatives. Please visit the Business Wales website to find the most up-to-date information available. Business Wales service continues to be available to support veterinary practices through a range of support options. One-to-one sessions with a Business Wales Advisor can be accessed by contacting Business Wales on email@example.com This guidance will be reviewed periodically so please check for updates on any new developments and opportunities.
There are a number of support systems that you can avail of as an individual as outlined below.
If you are furloughed
- Furloughing is also known as the Government Coronavirus Job Retention Scheme and is in place from 1st March until 31st October.
- You cannot undertake any work for your current employer until the start of August when you can return to work part-time. Detailed information on the Scheme is available here
- A £2,500 cap applies
- Your employer may choose to top up the shortfall if applicable
- If your income is cut, you can contact HMRC to find out if you are eligible to any state benefits
Statutory Sick Pay (SSP) for employees
SSP is available to you if you are an employee of a business.
Further information is available here
Please see UK Government advice on the Self-employment Income Support Scheme here.
Statutory Sick Pay (SSP) for the self-employed
If you are self-employed you are not eligible for SSP.
You can claim either:
- Universal Credit Details are available here
- Employment support allowance. Details are available here