UK Budget 2020: “Time to pay” arrangements and the coronavirus outbreak
As anticipated, the Chancellor announced a package of measures as part of the Budget on 11 March 2020 aimed at supporting businesses through the disruption caused by the Coronavirus (COVID-19).
Of particular note from a tax perspective (in addition to the business rate relief for certain businesses operating in certain sectors) is the expansion of existing “Time to Pay” arrangements, which is intended to assist businesses with cash flow difficulties to defer tax liabilities for a period of time. Arrangements will be agreed on a case-by-case basis and will be tailored to individual circumstances and liabilities. There is a specific helpline to call for any businesses interested in making use of this facility and HMRC will be dedicating additional resource to staff the helpline as required.
The extent to which businesses will be required to demonstrate that they have been affected by the Coronavirus (COVID-19) before “qualifying” for a “Time to Pay” arrangement is unclear (and begs the question of how that would even be possible) but nevertheless any business that is concerned about its ability to pay tax due in light of its current circumstances should contact HMRC.
Information regarding the helpline is available on the gov.uk website here, and a summary of the package of measures the Chancellor announced yesterday in relation to the Coronavirus (COVID-19) is available here.