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COVID Supports Update

COVID Business Supports. Gallagher Keane Chartered Accountants
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COVID Supports Update

Below is a summary of the COVID-19 Support Updates as updated in June 2021.

  • The extension of the Employment Wage Subsidy Scheme to 31 December 2021.
  • The extension and enhancement of the Covid Restrictions Support Scheme to provide additional support to businesses upon re-opening and to give certainty to businesses still directly affected by public health restrictions.
  • A new additional business support scheme (Business Resumption Support Scheme or BRSS) for businesses with reduced turnover as a result of public health restrictions to be implemented in September 2021.
  • The extension of the tax debt warehousing scheme to allow the period where liabilities arising can be “warehoused” to be extended to the end of 2021 for all eligible taxpayers, with an interest free period during 2022, and to include overpayments of EWSS in the scheme.
  • The extension of the reduced rate of VAT of 9% applying on a temporary basis to Hospitality and Tourism related goods and services until 1 September 2022.
  • The Government agreed to the drafting of legislation to provide for these measures.

These measures will provide certainty to businesses as public health restrictions are lifted and allow them to plan for the future as they re-open and resume normal trading.

Employment Wage Subsidy Scheme

The EWSS continues to represent a substantial and key part of the Government response to the Covid-19 pandemic, supporting businesses, encouraging employment and helping to maintain the link between employers and employees.

For Q3, the Government has decided to broadly maintain the status quo for EWSS, including the enhanced rates of support and the reduced rate of Employers’ PRSI with a modification to widen eligibility.

For Q4, the Government has approved the extension of the EWSS, however, it is considered too early to prescribe the precise operational parameters of the scheme that should apply for that quarter, and decisions in that regard would be taken closer to the time around the end of August / early September.

Covid Restrictions Support Scheme

The Covid Restriction Support Scheme (CRSS) which has been an extremely successful intervention by the Government to provide support to businesses whose customers are prevented from accessing their premises because of Public Health restrictions.

The CRSS in its current form will be continued to the end of 2021 for the reducing number of businesses that are still directly affected by public health restrictions that may remain in place. The qualification criteria and payment rates will remain unchanged.

The Government will also provide for an enhanced restart week payment– a single payment of three double week to businesses upon re-opening (subject to a maximum of €30,000). This will provide additional support to the businesses in restocking and making the necessary preparations to welcome their customers back in a safe manner.

This enhanced restart payment is intended to incentivise them to exit the scheme and return to trading as early as possible.

Business Resumption Support Scheme

As the economy re-opens, a further scheme is being introduced for vulnerable but viable businesses, particularly in sectors that were significantly impacted throughout the pandemic, even during periods when restrictions were eased.

Businesses whose turnover is reduced by 75% in the reference period (1 September 2020 to 31 August 2021) compared with 2019 will be eligible. The scheme will not be restricted by location, rate paying or physical premises. It is expected that there will be a limited number of such businesses and recognised that it is important that such businesses are supported.

Businesses who previously availed of other schemes such as SBASC and the Tourism Business Continuity Scheme for example as well as CRSS will be eligible to apply provided they meet the qualifying criteria.

The BRSS will be administered by Revenue and will operate in a similar way to CRSS.

Tax Warehousing

The tax debt warehousing scheme has provided approximately €2.3 billion of liquidity to Irish businesses at a time that they need it most. The scheme is now being extended to the end of this year, with no interest during 2022 and interest at a reduced rate of 3% thereafter.

Extension of the reduced rate of VAT for Hospitality and Tourism

The Government recognises the continuing challenges facing the Hospitality and Tourism sector, and have agreed that the reduced VAT rate of 9% applying to the sector on a temporary basis will be extended to the 1st of September 2022. The extension of the reduced rate until the end of the 2022 summer season allows for a longer period of recovery for the sector.

Gallagher Keane Chartered Accountants

Gallagher Keane provides a full range of tax services to small and medium sized enterprises, private companies and individuals. Our approach entails coming forward with ideas and solutions that bring added value to clients, based on a comprehensive understanding of each client’s particular business. If you have any queries please get in touch.