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Self-employment Income Support Scheme

Question for Treasury

UIN 179555, tabled on 12 April 2021

To ask the Chancellor of the Exchequer, whether his Department has made an assessment of the potential merits of lowering the requirement for freelancers to receive at least 50 per cent of their income from self-employed work to qualify for financial support from the Self-Employment Income Support Scheme.

Answered on

20 April 2021

The SEISS provides generous support to the self-employed, including freelancers who meet the eligibility criteria. Freelancers who are ineligible for the SEISS are likely to be those who receive less than half of their income from self-employment. The design of the SEISS, including the eligibility, requires that an individual’s trading profits must be at least equal to their non-trading income. This is intended to target support at those who need it the most, and who are most reliant on their self-employment income.

People ineligible for the SEISS on the basis of these criteria may be eligible for other elements of the substantial package of support available.

The CJRS has been available to all employers with a PAYE system and all employees on PAYE regardless of their employment contract. As such, freelancers and those on short term contracts could be eligible for the CJRS if they are on PAYE and meet the eligibility criteria.

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