In his first budget as Chancellor Rishni Sunak has unveiled a package to boost the economy and get the country through the coronavirus outbreak, which includes suspending business rates for many firms in England, extending sick pay and boosting NHS funding.

In an attempt to ‘get through this together’ the Chancellor has announced the following measures:

  • Statutory sick pay will be available to individuals self-isolating. Sick notes will be available by contacting NHS 111.
  • The government will meet costs for businesses with fewer than 250 employees providing statutory sick pay to those absent from work ‘due to coronavirus’
  • Self-employed workers or those in the gig economy will also need help. The government will make it quicker and easier to access benefits.
  • Contributory employment and support allowance (ESA) will be claimable from day one, rather than day eight. The minimum income floor for universal credit will be removed. The requirement to physically attend a job centre will be removed – everything can be done on the phone and online.
  • Business rates for firms in England with a rateable value below £51,,, suspended for a year
  • Any company eligible for small business rates relief will be allowed a £3,000 cash grant – a £2bn injection for 700,000 small businesses

We will continue to provide guidance to our customers on how the virus may affect their businesses directly and will update our website and Linkedin with developments as and when they happen.