Newly self-employed asked to complete pre-verification checks before applying for fourth SEISS grant

Newly self-employed taxpayers may be required to undergo pre-verification checks before they can access the fourth self-employment income support (SEISS) grant, it has been revealed.HM Revenue & Customs (HMRC) wrote to over 100,000 businesses recently informing them about the changes.

The Chancellor, Rishi Sunak, has extended the SEISS to include those who became self-employed in 2019/20 and who completed a tax return for the same year and submitted it within the appropriate deadlines.

Under the scheme, self-employed individuals affected by Covid-19 could get up to 80 per cent of their average trading profits in a three-month period as a one-off lump sum.

However, the regulator has warned that newly self-employed traders will need to confirm their identity and business activity before they can apply for a grant. According to HMRC, applicants will receive a telephone call over the next two weeks during business hours (8:00 to 17:30) and will be asked to provide an email address and agree to receive a link to a secure Dropbox – an online platform where electronic documents can be deposited securely online.

To complete the pre-verification check, you will need to provide one form of identity, such as a driver’s licence or passport, and three months’ worth of bank statements to demonstrate business activity.

HMRC warned that failure to provide such information could exclude you from the scheme.

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