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    New SEISS claims require HMRC pre verification checks

    As confirmed in the Budget on 3 March 2021, the fourth SEISS grant will be open to some taxpayers who became newly self-employed in the tax year 2019/2020. In order to protect the scheme from fraud, HMRC is writing to 100,000 taxpayers asking them to complete pre-verification checks before they can make a claim.

    ICAEW have released the following details to highlight how the pre-verification checks will work:

    – Taxpayers will receive a letter between 8 March and mid-April 2021, notifying them that they will receive a phone call from HMRC within 10 working days. HMRC has confirmed that it will make three attempts to contact the taxpayer, therefore, if they receive a letter, it is important that they ensure HMRC holds the correct telephone number for them. If not, contact 0800 024 1222 (this line is for updating telephone numbers only and will not be able to deal with any other queries).

    – During the call, HMRC will ask the taxpayer to confirm their email address and agree to receive a link to a secure Dropbox, where they will be asked to upload one form of identity and three months’ worth of bank statements to demonstrate their business activity. The link will expire after two days, so it is important this is done as quickly as possible.

    – If HMRC is unsuccessful in reaching the taxpayer, they will write a further letter. If they are unable to reach them, or they do not complete the checks, they will be unable to claim the SEISS grant.

    What is the SEISS grant eligibility?

    For the fourth grant, you need to be either currently trading but suffering reduced demand because of coronavirus, or temporarily unable to trade because of coronavirus.

    In addition, you must:

    – have traded in tax years 19/20 and 20/21 (and submitted your 19/20 tax return by 2 March);

    – declare that you intend to continue to trade and that you ‘reasonably believe’ there’ll be a significant reduction in your trading profits; and

    – have trading profits of less than £50,000 a year.

    If you are not eligible based on your 19/20 tax return, HMRC will then look at the tax years 16/17, 17/18, 18/19 and 19/20.

    What the fourth grant covers

    The fourth grant will provide funding based on 80% of three months’ average trading profits, capped at £7,500 in total.

    When to claim

    The online claims service is due to open in mid-April until 31 May 2021. Look out for your letter from HMRC from 8 March regarding the pre-verification checks to ensure you can claim on time.

    For more information on claiming the fourth SEISS grant, click here.

    Get in touch

    For advice and support in claiming the fourth SEISS grant, or any other SEISS related queries, please speak to your usual PM+M adviser or email us at



    This information is correct as of 9 March 2021. This blog is for general guidance only. Recipients should not act upon any of the information provided without seeking specific professional advice tailored to your circumstances, requirements or needs. Please contact PM+M before making any decisions based on any matters relating to this blog.

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