Self-Employment Income Support Scheme (SEISS) 4 and Uber drivers update – [update 23rd April 2021]

Self-Employment Income Support Scheme (SEISS) 4 claims soon. Uber drivers update – [update 23rd April 2021]

4th SEISS Grant will open over the next week. HMRC has written to each potential claimant giving them their personal claim date. We understands that these dates fall between 22 and 29 April.

The date provided is the earliest date on which the taxpayer can apply; the portal will remain open until 1 June 2021. Those who believe they are eligible but do not hear from HMRC are asked to wait until 30 April before contacting the SEISS helpline.

The taxpayer must confirm that they meet the criteria for the fourth grant, including that they:

  • traded in the tax years 2019/20 and 2020/21;
  • are currently trading but are impacted by reduced demand due to coronavirus, or have been trading but are temporarily unable to do so due to coronavirus;
  • intend to continue to trade; and
  • reasonably believe there will be a significant reduction in their trading profits.

Uber drivers are workers. What does that mean for tax and employment?

Uber announced it would pay the national living wage and holiday pay from March, following the legal battle. Parcel delivery service Hermes also started offering a self-employed plus contract last year, allowing workers up to 28 days paid leave and £8.50 per hour. 

What about tax?

Uber workers still considered self-employed for tax purposes, it may be that HMRC will want to revisit whether PAYE and National Insurance contributions are outstanding.

There is also a question of VAT; if Uber is the transportation provider rather than an intermediary between drivers and customers, there is potential for the business to owe large VAT back payments. Campaigners estimate Uber's VAT liability could be up to £2bn. However, the outcome of this remains to be seen.

Please do not hesitate to contact Aaron Associates on 020 86650767.