Coronavirus (Covid-19): Advice and support for local businesses
We’re doing everything we can to support our amazing local H&F businesses through the pandemic with our Shop Local Shop Safe campaign. It forms part of the work we’re doing as a council to protect all our residents, both young and old, in this crisis.
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Here are the answers to some frequently asked questions (FAQs) which will give you all the information you need to help run your business during the coronavirus (Covid-19) outbreak.
All links in the following FAQs open in a new window or tab.
- 5. How do I apply for the Kickstart scheme?
We can now help you get funding from the Kickstart scheme to pay for 6-month job placements in your business for local young people aged 16 to 24 who are currently on Universal Credit.
You can only apply directly for the government scheme if your business is creating more than 30 placements. Apply for Kickstart scheme here.
We are here to help businesses creating less than 30 job placements access the funding and help provide valuable work opportunities to young people in H&F.
So if you are a small business in H&F and would like to offer a job placement on the Kickstart scheme, please get in touch now with our WorkZone team at email@example.com or call 020 8753 6773.
- 6. Which businesses have the Government asked to remain closed to help stop the spread of the coronavirus?
You can find the list of businesses on the GOV.UK website.
- 7. How can I protect my business, customers and employees?
All the public health guidelines to give your staff, including what to do if an employee suspected or confirmed to have COVID-19 has been to work, can be found on the GOV.UK guidance for employers and businesses page.
- 8. I don’t want any of my employees to lose their job. How do I access the Government’s Coronavirus Job Retention Scheme?
- 9. I need some business advice, where can I get help?
We can provide you with free advice from a business expert online or by phone or signpost you to other support.
If you’re an established business of 18 months or more or self-employed with a Unique Tax Reference (UTR) and are looking for some in-depth 1-2-1 business resilience advice, please contact our resident London Business Hub advisor Raj Tandon via email for an online support session.
- 10. How do I reclaim for the sick pay I give my employees off work due to COVID-19?
More information is available on the GOV.UK COVID-19 support for businesses page.
- 11. I’m worried I won’t be able to pay my taxes?
If you have missed a tax payment or you might miss your next payment due to COVID-19, please call HMRC’s dedicated helpline: 0800 0159 559.
Businesses will not need to make VAT payments for three months. The deferral will apply from 20 March 2020 until 30 June 2020.
Self-employed people are eligible for the Income Tax Self-Assessment deferral. Payments due on the 31 July 2020 will be deferred until 31 January 2021.
- 12. Will my insurance cover protect my business during the coronavirus outbreak?
Check the terms and conditions of your insurance policy and contact your insurance provider for more details.
- 13. How do larger firms get help for short-term finance issues?
All UK businesses can apply for the Government’s COVID-19 Corporate Financing Facility. We’re awaiting details from the Government on how businesses will be able to apply for the funding. Visit the Bank of England website for more information.
- 14. Where can I find more information on the Government’s business support measures?
More information is available on GOV.UK's guidance page for employees, employers and businesses.
- 15. How do I avoid the risks of problems such as Legionella when reopening my business?
During the lockdown during the coronavirus pandemic, many business premises have been temporarily closed and may not have been occupied for some time. Water lying in pipes and other water systems may have allowed Legionella bugs to grow.
We have also
- Provided a three-month rent deferment to our commercial tenants and market traders in the borough. We will be working with these businesses to come up with a fair payment plan.
- Helped keep our popular North End Road market open by providing stewards to support social distancing. We’ve also delivered PPE and handwashing facilities to the traders so we can keep this important source of healthy, cheap food available to residents.
- We’ve shared stay at homes and safe distancing posters with local businesses to help them keep their employees and customers safe. Download and print our A4 Practise Safe Distancing poster (pdf 88KB).
- H&F's pest control service
- Preventing Legionella
- Business support from London Mayor Sadiq Khan
- Facebook Small Business Grants Program
- Free crowdfunding support
- Met Police COVID-19 advice for businesses
Read more on the coronavirus outbreak
- West London Business coronavirus microsite – a new website and phone line (020 8607 2500, Monday to Friday from 9am to 5pm) dedicated to providing answers to west London businesses’ coronavirus queries
- GOV.UK coronavirus (COVID-19) UK government response page
- H&F Council coronavirus (COVID-19) latest information and advice page
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