HMRC have updated their Self-Employment Income Support Scheme (SEISS) guidance to reflect the fourth grant which will become available later this month. 

  • The SEISS is a Coronavirus support payment designed to financially assist the self-employed through the pandemic.  
  • Details of the fourth SEISS grant, covering May to September 2021, was announced at Budget 2021 on 3 March. The grant is set at 80% of three months average trading profits paid in a single instalment and capped at £7,500.
  • This is the first of the SEISS grants to take into account 2019-20 tax returns and will be available to those who became newly self-employed in that tax year. 


In order to qualify for the fourth grant, there are a number of key conditions which must be met. The taxpayer must: 

  • Carry on a trade that has been adversely affected by circumstances arising from Coronavirus.
  • Have submitted tax returns, before 3 March 2021, for all relevant years. 
  • Have traded in both 2019-20 and 2020-21.
  • Intend to continue to carry on a trade in 2021-22.
  • Have trading profits of £50,000 or less which are at least equal to non-trading income. 
    • This test will first be applied to 2019-20. If the condition is not met in that year, HMRC will look at the overall position in up to four previous tax years.

Claims and HMRC contact 

  • In mid-April 2021, HMRC will contact eligible taxpayers by e-mail, letter or online to give a personal claim date.
    • This personal claim date will be the earliest date on which a claim can be made.
  • In March 2021, HMRC started to contact taxpayers directly who became newly self-employed in 2019-20 and may be eligible for the grant.  
    • Not all newly self-employed taxpayers will be contacted. Those that do not receive contact should wait to receive their personal claim date in mid-April.
  • The online service to claim the fourth grant will be available from late April 2021.
    • As with previous rounds of SEISS grants, agents cannot claim on behalf of clients. 
  • Claims for the fourth grant must be made on or before 1 June 2021.

Useful guides on this topic

COVID-19: Self-Employment Income Support Scheme (SEISS)
Support for the self-employed during the Coronavirus crisis. 

COVID-19: Government support tracker
This tracker covers measures announced by the government to support individuals and businesses, as we get through COVID-19.

FAQs: Coronavirus Self-Employment Income Support Scheme
The House of Commons has published a briefing paper, 'Coronavirus: Self-Employment Income Support Scheme’ which provides answers to 19 common questions on how the scheme works, who is eligible, and how to claim.

COVID-19: Taxation of Coronavirus Support Payments
This guide summarises the tax treatment of grants paid during the Coronavirus pandemic.

External links

Self-Employment Income Support Scheme Extension 4 Direction

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