Frequently Asked Questions: Covid-19


Dixcart ‘hub’ of frequently asked questions regarding accounting, legal, tax and immigration matters relating to Covid-19.

Please see below a series of frequently asked questions we are receiving from our clients. This page will be regularly updated, however, if you have a specific question that has not been answered below, please contact:

My company may need to apply for the Coronavirus Interruption Loan Scheme (CBILS): how will this affect my claim for Research & Development (R&D) tax credits?

The CBILS has been given the status of notified State Aid within the temporary framework for dealing with Covid-19 developed by the European Commission.The R&D scheme for SMEs is also a notified State Aid. There are limits to how much State Aid a company can receive, and so taking advantage of the CBILS may jeopardise the amount of R&D relief which is available under the SEM scheme. The company may still be able to claim under the scheme for larger companies, but this is significantly less generous. If your company claims, or may be eligible to claim R&D tax credits under the SME scheme, we can work with you to access whether claiming the CBILS will preclude the company from claiming R&D tax credits and calculate which will be most beneficial.

My company really needs the repayable credit: how quickly will we receive it?

HMRC have confirmed that they are currently aiming to pay tax credits made to loss making companies within 28 days of a claim. HMRC are considering whether to allow the offset of repayable credits against other liabilities of the company.

Will the repayable credit be lower because of changing staffing costs?

The vast majority of R&D claims relate to staff costs so if staff have been furloughed there will be a follow-on impact on the level of the R&D claim. Helpfully, the reintroduction of the cap of payable tax credit under the R&D SME scheme has been delayed by one year until 1 April 2021. Under the new rules, the maximum repayable credit which can be claimed will be three times the company’s PAYE and NICs liability for that year.

How do I access the Coronavirus Job Retention Scheme?

In order to access the Coronavirus Job Retention Scheme, you will need to designate affected employees as ‘furloughed workers’, effectively laying them off, and notifying them of this change. Normally, an employee is usually laid off without pay, however under the Coronavirus Job Retention Scheme, HMRC will reimburse employers 80% of furloughed workers wage costs (up to a cap of £2,500 per month). You will need to obtain the employee’s agreement to this change in their employment status, or in writing. You can then notify HMRC and apply for the Coronavirus Job Retention Scheme. More information can be found here.

What financial support is available to businesses during the Covid-19 crisis?

What is the Coronavirus Businsses Interruption Loan Scheme?

A temporary Coronavirus Business Interruption Loan Scheme, delivered by the British Business Bank, will launch next week in order to support businesses to access bank lending and overdrafts. The government have said they will provide lenders with a guarantee of 80% on each loan (these are subject to a per-lender cap on claims) so that lenders can continue to provide finance to SMEs. Businesses or banks will not be charged for this guarantee and the Scheme will support loans of up to £5 million in value. The government will cover the first 6 months of interest payments – allowing businesses to access this first 6 months of finance interest free.

Have any changes been made to self-assessment tax payments and VAT deferrals?

Self-assessment tax payments will be deferred until 31 January 2021 – all self-employed individuals are elgible.

A VAT deferral will be in place for all businesses between 20 March 2020 and 30 June 2020. No payment is required within that period. Taxpayers will have until the end of the 2020-21 tax year to repay any amounts deferred. All businesses are eligible.

My accounts are due for filing. What should I do?

Companies House have announced that businesses will be able to apply for a 3-month extension for filing their accounts.  Applications can be made through a fast-tracked online system which will take just 15 minutes to complete.

I have other documents that need filing at Companies House. What is happening?

Companies House have confirmed they have closed all their contact centres.  The Cardiff Office is still open but only for the receipt of documents.  Therefore while records will be updated we anticipate there is going to be a lengthy delay on any changes appearing on the public record.  Where we maintain the company’s statutory books we can provide certified copies of the registers etc if required.

Additional advice can be found on the Government website.

The data contained within this document is for general information only. No responsibility can be accepted for inaccuracies. Readers are also advised that the law and practice may change from time to time. This document is provided for information purposes only and does not constitute accounting, legal or tax advice. Professional advice should be obtained before taking or refraining from any action as a result of the contents of this document.