Eleanor Temple, chair of insolvency and restructuring trade body R3 in Yorkshire and a barrister at Kings Chambers in Leeds, responds to the COVID-19 self-employed support measures announced yesterday (26 March) by the Chancellor, Rishi Sunak MP:
“Even without the current coronavirus outbreak, self-employed people and sole traders often have unpredictable income levels, making it harder for many to save for a rainy day. The Government’s announcement is a welcome, if limited, step towards evening out the support available for workers across the economy.
“The limitations do stand out. The self-employed will have a sizeable gap to bridge between now and June when the help will actually be available. That could be too long to wait for those with no safety net. There are quite a few gaps in the support: for people who have only recently started working for themselves or who pay themselves through dividends, there may be no help at all.
“Anyone who is in financial difficulty or starting to see signs it may be around the corner should seek advice from a professional as soon as possible. The earlier you seek advice about your personal finances, the more considered a decision you can make, and the greater range of options you have for improving your situation.”