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More help for self-employed but 'deep structural problems' remain
by Susie Hughes at 12:48 23/10/20 (News on Business)
The Chancellor has announced that the amount paid to self-employed people through the Self-Employment Income Support Scheme (SEISS) would double from £1,875 to £3,750.
Self-employment group IPSE welcomed the move, but warned that there are still 'deep structural problems' with the system.

In particular, the group claimed that it was 'an enormous omission' that a third of self-employed people, including limited company directors and the newly self-employed, remain excluded from the scheme.

Derek Cribb of IPSE said: “It’s welcome that the Government has doubled SEISS to 40 per cent of previous income. However, there are still deep structural problems with the scheme, which the Government must urgently address.

“A third of the self-employed – including sole directors of limited companies and the newly self-employed – are still completely excluded from SEISS (and the proportion is even higher in the hospitality sector). This is an enormous omission and it is deeply troubling that the Government has not addressed this.

“The gaps in the support have already led to the biggest drop in the number of self-employed on record – over 250,000 since the beginning of the year. With large parts of the country locking down again, this is only set to worsen as many forgotten freelancers face financial devastation. Government must act now and open up SEISS or other targeted support to these groups.”

Qdos - abandoned

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Tax and insurance specialist Qdos, felt that freelancers and contractors had been abandoned by the Chancellor, as the new measures failed to consider the specific needs of individuals operating through their own limited company.

Seb Maley from Qdos said: “The Chancellor said that ‘people are not alone’, but where is the support for two million freelancers, contractors and individuals who work through their own limited companies?

"These measures are generous to businesses with premises, firms with employees and many sole traders, but offer very little - if anything - to millions of independent workers who have been all but abandoned by the Government for more than 7 months now. These entrepreneurial and flexible workers will play an instrumental role in the economic recovery, which is why the support must be tailored to their needs."

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