Supporting Jobs and Businesses Post Covid-19

While some areas of everyday life are beginning to resemble a “new normal”, the economic impact of Covid-19 still remains unclear. The government has attempted to clarify past spending and offer possible future solutions but remain inconclusive about financial recovery in both the short and long-term.

Last month, Chancellor Rishi Sunak advised Conservative MPs that there would not be a “horror show of tax rises with no end in sight” following lockdown. However, suspected tax hikes and the cancellation of the Autumn Budget have left many politicians, as well as the general public, concerned and cautious.

The New Job Support Scheme

The Coronavirus Job Retention Scheme (more commonly known as furlough) has been taken up by 1.2 million employers and ensured a regular income for the 9.6 million workers unable to work during lockdown. October is the final month of the scheme, which is estimated to have cost £60 billion.

The new Job Support Scheme will start on 1 November and last for six months. It aims to support those in ‘viable’ jobs who can work at least one third of their hours. While it has been designed to support small and medium-sized businesses, large businesses can also take part if they have experienced significant financial losses due to Covid-19.

Defining ‘Viable’ Workers

The Job Support Scheme aims to prevent job losses by maintaining part-time employment during the current period of increasing Covid-19 cases. It is financially similar to the furlough system with employees likely to receive up to 80% of their usual monthly pay. However, there are growing concerns about the use of the term ‘viable’ and which jobs are likely to be included and excluded.

Employees will need to be classed as a ‘viable’ worker in order to receive payments. ‘Viable’ jobs have been defined as jobs where businesses can continue to employ their workers over the coming months, even if only part-time.  At a recent press conference, Chancellor Sunak declined to provide any specific examples of which jobs would be eligible for the scheme, but expressed confidence that it would ”benefit large numbers”.

Despite the Chancellor’s reassurance, UK employers remain apprehensive, warning that thousands of workers will be at risk of unemployment in sectors such as retail, tourism and leisure.

Assistance for Business Owners

In addition to the Job Support Scheme, small and medium-sized businesses will be able to benefit from extended loan repayments. Time limits for new loan applications have also been increased, including for the Coronavirus Large Business Interruption Loan Scheme and the Future Fund.

In light of the challenges caused by Covid-19, many business owners are also considering selling or buying a business. The good news is that this is still achievable with the right support and guidance.

A M Davies are experienced in preparing business transfers to ensure that the process is quick, efficient and stress-free. Find out more on our website or contact us to discuss your requirements.