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Self-employment Income Support Scheme

Question for Treasury

UIN 136576, tabled on 12 January 2021

To ask the Chancellor of the Exchequer, whether he plans to (a) close the gaps in the Self-Employment Income Support Scheme identified by the Institute for Fiscal Studies in the fourth round of the scheme for February-April 2021 and (b) pay arrears in respect of rounds one to three inclusive for creative (i) professionals and (ii) other self-employed people who have been ineligible from support under the scheme since March 2020.

Answered on

18 January 2021

The Self-Employment Income Support Scheme (SEISS) has provided and will continue to provide generous support to self-employed people who meet the eligibility criteria.

The Government recognises that taxpayers have faced immense challenges during the COVID-19 pandemic. The Government has prioritised delivering support to as many people as possible while guarding against the risk of fraud or abuse.

The design of the SEISS, including the eligibility requirements that an individual’s trading profits must be no more than £50,000 and at least equal to their non-trading income, means it is targeted at those who most need it, and who are most reliant on their self-employment income.

The first SEISS grant supported 2.7 million individuals with claims totalling £7.8 billion. A further £5.9 billion has been claimed through the second grant and, as of 13 December, £4.8 billion through the third SEISS grant.

The fourth grant will cover February to April 2021. The Government will set out further details in due course

The SEISS continues to be just one element of a comprehensive package of support for the self-employed which includes Bounce Back loans, tax deferrals, rental support, mortgage holidays, self-isolation support payments and other business support grants.

The Government recognises the value of the cultural sector and creative professionals and has announced a £1.57 billion Culture Recovery Fund to protect the cultural sectors through the COVID-19 pandemic. To date, more than £790m of grants and loans have been allocated to over 3,000 cultural organisations in England. Organisations supported include galleries, theatres, museums, orchestras, music venues, comedy clubs and festivals. This funding will help to support jobs and organisations across the country.

Answered by

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