Coronavirus: Support For Businesses

L&F Training understand this is an extremely difficult time for businesses, the self-employed and employees, who are all facing unprecedented challenges as a result of the impact of Covid-19. L&F want to reassure you we are here to support you as much as we can.

In this statement you'll find information and links to keep you up to date with this fast-moving situation. 

L&F is focused on supporting you through this difficult period.  

L&F understand the sense of urgency that you, as an employer, must be feeling and know that ideally you would like answers to all of your questions. Unfortunately, in these unprecedented times we simply cannot speculate as to timescales, future developments and therefore what the overall impact will be for businesses across the UK.

What we can assure you of is our support wherever possible, as you begin to scrutinise the financial resilience and resource contingency of your business. 

Recruitment and Training

L&F Training is still carrying on with virtual teaching and is aiming to support our learners throughout these very challenging times. If you currently have an apprentice please encourage them to take part in these virtual online lessons.

We are in constant communication with our current learners and we are looking at offering online courses for families to engage in learning within their own households.

L&F Recruitment and Employability team can assist with the recruitment and training support during and after this ongoing difficult period, please email frandeeley@landftraining.com or call on 07867 692924 to discuss further.

As soon as further details are provided, we will ensure that this relevant information is made available


Help Available:

Small Business Grants Fund

  • The government will provide additional funding for local authorities to support small businesses that already pay little or no Business Rates because of Small Business Rate Relief (SBBR). This will provide a one-off grant of £10,000 to help meet their ongoing business costs. You do not need to apply the council will contact anyone eligible for this.

Coronavirus Business Interruption Loan Scheme

This scheme, delivered by the British Business Bank, will support businesses with a turnover of less than £45m per year to access bank lending and overdrafts. The government will provide lenders with a guarantee of 80% on each loan (subject to a per-lender cap on claims) to give lenders further confidence in continuing to provide finance to SMEs. The government will not charge businesses or banks for this guarantee, and the Scheme will support loans of up to £5 million in value. Businesses can access the first 12 months of that finance interest free as government will cover the first 12 months of interest payments. All the major banks will offer the scheme. To apply if you are affected by coronavirus (https://www.british-business-bank.co.uk/ourpartners/supporting-business-loans-enterprise-finance-guarantee/).

Statutory Sick Pay Package of Relief

·         The Government will bring forward legislation to allow small-and medium-sized businesses and employers (less than 250 employees) to reclaim Statutory Sick Pay paid for sickness absence due to COVID-19. The refund will cover up to 2 weeks' SSP per eligible employee who has been off work because of COVID-19. Employees who are self-isolating are now able to get SSP from the first day they are off work.  

Coronavirus Job Retention Scheme

·         Workers of any employer who is placed on this scheme can keep their job, with the government paying up to 80% of a furloughed worker's wages, up to a total of £2,500 per worker each month. These will be backdated to 1st March and will be initially open for 3 months, to be extended if necessary. 

Deferring VAT & Income Tax Payments

·         VAT payments due between now and the end of June will be deferred. No VAT registered business will have to make a VAT payment normally due with their VAT return to HMRC in that period. VAT refunds and reclaims will be paid by the government as normal. Income tax payments due in July 2020 under the Self-Assessment system will be deferred to January 2021, benefiting up to 5.7m self-employed businesses. 

Support for Businesses Paying Tax

·         All businesses and self-employed people in financial distress, and with outstanding tax liabilities, may be eligible to receive support with their tax affairs through HMRC's Time To Pay service. These arrangements are agreed on a case-by-case basis and are tailored to individual circumstances and liabilities. 

HMRC have set up a help line 0300 456 3565. They will give you advice on your tax and any benefits you are eligible to claim.

  • Time to Pay helpline is open for businesses that are struggling to meet HMRC obligations. Phone 0800 0159 559 to discuss available options

Support for the self-employed 

·         Self-employed individuals will receive direct cash grant of 80% of their profits, up to £2,500 per month. The scheme will be open to those with a trading profit of less than £50,000 in 2018-19 or an average trading profit of less than £50,000 from 2016-17, 2017-18 and 2018-19. To qualify, more than half of their income in these periods must come from self-employment.

Apprentices

·         If you are currently concerned about supporting apprentices within your business during the current restrictions please visit GOV.UK website for guidance

For more information please follow this link: 

COVID-19: guidance for employees, employers and businesses.

Below is the latest Business update relating to Apprentices which was published today (9th April 2020)

Business Update - Issue 54 (April 2020)

Updated 9 April 2020

Contents

1.    1. Coronavirus (COVID-19): apprenticeship programme response

2.    2. Route reviews update

1. Coronavirus (COVID-19): Apprenticeship Programme Response

These are difficult times for employers, apprentices and providers of apprenticeship training and assessment. As part of the cross-government efforts to respond to the impact of COVID-19, the Education and Skills Funding Agency (ESFA) is implementing new measures, for the duration of the pandemic, to make it easier for apprenticeships to continue and complete in a different way if they need to, or to break and resume an apprenticeship later when that becomes possible.

This document sets out guidance and some temporary flexibilities that we are introducing to the programme during the pandemic, and provides answers to questions related to these changes and other common questions. Our information should be read alongside the support to business page on GOV.UK.

The Institute for Apprenticeships and Technical Education (IFATE) has also published new guidance on the delivery of assessment.

This guidance includes information on:

  • delivering apprenticeships flexibly to those working at home

  • continuing training and end-point assessment for furloughed apprentices

  • applying the policy on breaks in learning

  • delays to end-point assessment (EPA)

  • alternative arrangements for EPA and external quality assurance

Specifically, we are:

  • introducing flexibilities to allow furloughed apprentices to continue their training, as long as it does not provide services to, or generate revenue for, their employer

  • encouraging training providers to deliver training to apprentices remotely and via e-learning as far as is practicable

  • allowing the modification of end-point assessment arrangements, including remote assessments wherever practicable and possible in order to maintain progress and achievement for apprentices

  • clarifying that apprentices ready for assessment, but who cannot be assessed due to COVID-19 issues, can have their end-point assessment rescheduled. Apprentices whose gateway is delayed can have an extension to the assessment timeframe.

  • enabling employers and training providers to report and initiate a break in learning, where the interruption to learning due to COVID-19 is greater than 4 weeks

  • clarification on how to record breaks in learning so that funding is not unnecessarily disrupted

  • confirming that, where apprentices are made redundant, it is our ambition to find them alternative employment and continue their apprenticeship as quickly as possible and within 12 weeks

Our objective for these measures is to support all employers, and apprenticeship training and assessment providers, to retain their apprentices and to help them plan with more certainty through this difficult period of disruption.


Read more on GOV.UK.

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