COVID-19: supporting self-employed workers


I know people are deeply worried about the coronavirus – the impact it will have on their jobs, their incomes and their ability to provide for their families. The Government said we would support the British people – and we meant it.

These are the measures the Government has announced to support self-employed workers and ensure people get the support they need to do the right thing - stay at home, protect the NHS, and save lives:



  • This scheme will ensure people who work for themselves are getting the financial support they need. The Government will pay self-employed people across the whole UK who have been adversely affected by coronavirus a taxable grant worth 80% of their average monthly profits over the last three years, up to £2,500 a month, for three months – and will be extended for longer if necessary.
  • Those who are eligible will be contacted by HMRC directly, asked to fill out a simple online form, and the grant will be paid the grant directly into their bank account. We expect people to access the scheme by the beginning of June.
  • This scheme will only be open to those with trading profits up to £50,000, leaving 95% of people who are majority self-employed eligible for the scheme. HMRC will also ask people to demonstrate that the majority of their income comes from self-employment, and, to minimise fraud, only those who are already in self-employment, and who have a tax return for 2019, will be able to apply.



  • For self-employed people who are struggling now, we’ve also made sure that many will be able to access loans through the Coronavirus Business Interruption Loans Scheme. This scheme provides loans of up to £5 million, and will be interest free for twelve months.



  • If you’re getting less work or no work because of coronavirus (COVID-19), you can also apply online for Universal Credit or apply for ‘new style’ Employment and Support Allowance if you have a disability or health condition that affects how much you can work. 
  • You will not need to go into a Jobcentre Plus office to apply or get a payment.
  • The minimum income floor has been suspended for 12 months - so self-employed people can now access, in full, Universal Credit at a rate that is equivalent to Statutory Sick Pay for employees. 



  • If you're self-employed, you can opt to defer income tax self-assessment payments for July 2020 until the end of January 2021.


Last Updated: 13th April 2020