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COVID-19 Update 9th February 2021

  • Bounce Back Loans

Over the weekend the Chancellor announced a number of changes to Bounce Back Loans aimed at providing additional support for businesses. At the moment, a Bounce Back Loan is for a six year period, with no payments being due in the first 12 months. Following the announcement on the weekend, before the first repayment is due, your lender will contact you about further options to:

  • extend the term of your loan to 10 years
  • move to interest-only repayments for a period of 6 months (you can use this option up to 3 times)
  • pause your repayments for a period of 6 months (you can use this option once)

It should be noted the closing date for applying for a Bounce Back Loan is 31 March 2021

(I’ve asked as to whether these options will be available to businesses with CBIL loans)


  • Self Assessment Payments Including Class 2 National Insurance Contributions

Self Assessment taxpayers were given the option of deferring payment of their July 2020 Payment on Account until 31 January 2021 and, as a result, have 3 payments to make on this date:

    • The deferred July 2020 payment on account (if it remains unpaid)
    • Any 2019 to 2020 balancing charge
    • The first 2020 to 2021 payment on account

However, there is a Time to Pay option which some people would have taken which could result in 2019 to 2020 Class 2 National Insurance contributions being paid after their due date of 31 January 2021, leading to a detrimental effect on certain contributory benefits claimed.

People affected by this are advised to contact HMRC as soon as possible for help. They may be able to allocate monies have already paid for 2019 to 2020 Self Assessment liabilities against the Class 2 National Insurance contributions, resulting in a small amount of interest being paid and contributory benefit claims being protected.

HMRC is also advising Self Assessment taxpayers that they can still pay tax by instalments if they are unable to pay in full by 31 January 2021. If you have not filed your 2019 to 2020 Self Assessment return, you will need to file it as soon as possible and they will let you  know what payments you owe and how to set up a Time to Pay instalment arrangement. People owing up to £30,000 you can do this online without contacting HMRC.


  • Workplace Testing

Cabinet ministers have been tasked to encourage their sectors to take up the offer of rapid workplace testing in order to normalise testing in the workplace. To do this they have opened a new portal where you can register to order tests. The criteria for registering for workplace testing are:

    • your business is registered in England
    • you employ 50 people or more
    • your employees cannot work from home
    • your business is open
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