For updated information surrounding the Coronavirus please check the government website: https://www.gov.uk/coronavirus
Coronavirus Job Retention Scheme
The UK Government Coronavirus Job Retention Scheme went live on Monday 20 April 2020. The Chancellor announced last week that the scheme will be extended until the end of June.
Initially the scheme to help pay people’s wages only supported those already employed on 28 February 2020. Now, workers need to have been on the payroll by 19 March 2020, ie employers will have notified HM Revenue and Customs that a new employee was on the payroll via the Real Time Information (RTI) system which updates the tax authority when someone is paid. Therefore, someone paid late in March is unlikely to be covered by their current employer.
Coronavirus: Government support package for innovative new companies
The Government has announced a support package for innovative new companies that are not eligible for existing coronavirus rescue schemes. It will match up to £250m of private investment and add £550m to an existing loan and grant scheme for smaller firms that focus on research and development. To qualify, a company must have raised £250,000 privately in the last five years. Any money put in by the Government must be matched by private investors. If the money is not repaid, the Government will take an ownership stake in the company.
Coronavirus: FCA consulting on plans to freeze pawn, payday and car loan payments
The FCA (Financial Conduct Authority) is consulting with finance firms to introduce a payment holiday for people struggling with payday loans, car finance and pawn shop borrowing. It hopes to finalise proposals by 24 April and introduce them as soon as possible.
Coronavirus: Be aware of online fraud
The National Cyber Security Centre, part of GCHQ, has launched a Cyber Aware campaign to encourage everyone to take simple steps to protect their own security on line. For more information go to: www.ncsc.gov.uk/cyberaware.
They have also set up a new Suspicious Email Reporting Service for people to forward potential scam emails to: email@example.com
Coronavirus: Avivia to allow customers to defer premiums for up to 3 months
Aviva car and home insurance customers who are struggling financially during the virus pandemic will be allowed to defer premiums for up to 3 months. To defer, a customer or their spouse must have been furloughed and are not yet receiving 80% of pay, be self employed and unable to work; or have lost their job after March 2. However, customers will repay the money through higher monthly instalments in the future.
Coronavirus: Admiral to give £25 motor insurance refund to customers
Admiral is refunding £25 to their customers with a car or van insurance policy refund as vehicles are being used less during the coronavirus pandemic. The payment will be paid automatically to anyone with a car or van insurance policy with Admiral on 20 April. Customers will receive the payment by the end of May.