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How to apply for a Business Interruption Loan

Tuesday, April 7th, 2020

The British Business Bank has updated its guidance on how to apply for the recently changed Coronavirus Business Interruption Loan Scheme (CBILS). A summary follows;

Who can you apply to?

Most of the UK High Street banks can provide a CBILS loan facility. As your present bankers already know you and your business, for most businesses, making an application to your existing bank would seem to be appropriate.

Apply online

Due to the present disruption – phone lines are extremely busy and it’s unlikely you will be able to visit a branch – make your application online.

What about personal guarantees?

Under the scheme, lenders will not take personal guarantees if your loan application is below £250,000.

For facilities above £250,000, personal guarantees may still be required, at a lender’s discretion, but:

 

  • Guarantees will not include your home – they will exclude any property that is considered to be the residence that qualifies for capital gains tax Principal Private Residence Relief, and
  • Recoveries under these guarantees are capped at a maximum of 20% of the outstanding balance of the CBILS facility after the proceeds of business assets have been applied.

Who can apply?

To apply, your business must:

  • Be UK-based in its business activity
  • Have an annual turnover of no more than £45 million
  • Have a borrowing proposal which the lender would consider viable, were it not for the current pandemic
  • Self-certify that it has been adversely impacted by the coronavirus (COVID-19).

 

The third point in this list is critical.

What your bank will need from you

Apart from completing the online application, lenders will need:

  1. The amount you want to borrow.
  2. Why you need the loan, what the money is to be used for.
  3. The repayment period, what term are you requesting, and
  4. Can you afford the repayments?

Supporting documents that may be required

You will need to provide certain evidence to show that you can afford to repay the loan. This is likely to include:

  • Management accounts
  • Cash flow forecast
  • Business plan
  • Historic accounts
  • Details of assets

The above requirements will vary from lender to lender. If you do not have everything listed here, a CBILS loan could still be an option to provide finance to support your business.

Note: For many customers approaching their existing lenders for a smaller facility, the process may be automated and therefore may not require the same level of documentation.

We can help

If you are considering a loan we can help you gather together the forecasts and other documentation you will need. We can also help you decide on the level of support you will need and how long you will need to repay the loan.

Covid – Webinar by Renfrewshire Chamber

Monday, April 6th, 2020

Tuesday 7th April: Webinar on Business Support

It may be worth mentioning that one of our directors, Paul Craig, is presenting at tomorrow’s webinar by the local Chamber.  Click here for details:-

RCC Webinar Series – Covid-19 Business Support

 

Covid-19 Support for Business – Where are we now?

Friday, April 3rd, 2020

7th April: Updated Version:-

Covid 07042020

Dear All,

We have updated our website with this new summary of where Government business support sits in relation to Covid-19.

CLICK HERE: –

[3rd April release superceded – click latest above]

Please email jrs@milnecraig.co.uk or your usual office contact point on 0141 887 7811 to discuss any help we can give you with obtaining loans or grants as available.

As ever, our primary concern remains the safety and well being of our staff, clients, friends and family.  This includes their economic well-being and we are doing our best to support clients in obtaining Government and Bank funding as it becomes available.

Kind Regards

The Directors, Milne Craig

Dividends excluded from job support scheme calculations

Friday, April 3rd, 2020

When first announced as a news story, published by government 26 March 2020, information regarding the support scheme for the self-employed included a telling paragraph. It said:

Those who pay themselves a salary and dividends through their own company are not covered by the scheme [the self-employed scheme] but will be covered for their salary by the Coronavirus Job Retention Scheme if they are operating PAYE schemes.

Clearly, this confirms that claims under the Coronavirus Job Retention Scheme will be based on previously submitted payroll returns that include director’s salaries (but not dividends).

Directors that have taken the lion’s share of their income in the form of dividends – and benefitted from significant NIC reductions for a number of years – will therefore be restricted in the amount of relief they can claim. Potentially, they will only be able to recoup up to 80% of their monthly salary – capped at £2,500 a month.

To make a claim, directors will need to furlough themselves. This is the new shorthand for laying yourself off. To qualify, you will also have to play no further active role in the business. For most directors this is a non-starter as directors, at the very least, have a legal responsibility to monitor and file ongoing returns to HMRC and Companies House, keep accounts up-to-date and manage numerous ongoing matters for their business.

What are the choices for directors?

If your company is unable to trade – perhaps one of the leisure, entertainment or other “closed down” service industries – you may be able to organise moth-balling activity in such a way that you can assert you are furloughed and collect 80% of your reported salary as a grant, up to the £2,500 limit.

If this does not meet your basic cash requirements there are other personal claims you can consider: Universal Credits or other relevant benefits.

If you want to consider ongoing trading, possibly at a reduced level, planning will be key. Directors will need to take care that they do not borrow money to support temporary losses if this results in insolvency. Insolvency in this respect means running out of retained profits and issued share capital.

Whatever your decision on these choices, please contact us, as planning and monitoring of your company finances will be paramount. The longer this disruption continues, the greater the strain and risk for small businesses will become.

Statutory Sick Pay (SSP)

Tuesday, March 31st, 2020

Employers have been rightly worried about the cost of funding SSP for employees that are self-isolating or suffering from the COVID-19 virus. Especially as SSP is now due on day one of absences.

The Chancellor has now confirmed that he will create a means for employers to recover any SSP paid for the first 14 days of sick leave.

Additionally, employees who are advised to self-isolate for COVID-19 will soon be able to obtain an alternative to the fit note to cover this by contacting NHS 111, rather than visiting a doctor. This can be used by employees where their employers require evidence.

Those who are not eligible for SSP, for example the self-employed or people earning below the Lower Earnings Limit of £118 per week (increasing to £120 from 6 April 2020), can now more easily make a claim for Universal Credit or Contributory Employment and Support Allowance.

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