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Guilty, I claimed the SEISS, but did I need it?

Money for almost nothing

Didn't find your answer?

Well yes, I did claim the SEISS and have been paid.

Yes my income has dropped during Mar/Apr & May, so was entitled to it, but did I need it?

Hey ho, at least I have some funds to pay my tax bill early.

BTW, I have not cancelled or delayed any other outgoings.

So am I wise or not.

At least I have not claimed for the other options available!

How are you all doing?

Replies (24)

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By Matrix
20th May 2020 20:28

Don’t tell your clients you didn’t need it! Are you one of those doing furlough claims for free for 6 months?

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Replying to Matrix:
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By graemeban123
20th May 2020 21:29

Hi, I'm one of those doing the Furlough claims for free. Are you not? You're not ripping your clients off for doing them are you?

Personally I want to help as many clients through this as possible, I'll benefit in the end if I help them through it and they are still around. They will continue to pay my fees because they are still around and are happy I helped them when it was needed.

Can't decide if the original question was someone just trying to wind everyone up. Yes HMRC would have just paid it at the moment as they do not have the capacity to do the checks they need to ensure no one claims it when not really entitled to, any competent accountant will have realised that.

If the original post is real, have they really lost the income or has it jest been deferred by a couple of months? I am sure HMRC will be looking into any accountants that have made claims and good luck to HMRC, I hope they find them.

Anyone taking advantage of the current situation should be found out and prosecuted.

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Replying to Matrix:
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By puzzel
21st May 2020 21:18

They asked if I was claiming, at first I thought not. But having thought about it, I did claim.
No I only claim for furlough month on month.

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By WhichTyler
20th May 2020 21:19

Well if you don't need it you will pay some of it back in tax soon. And we will all pay back the rest of it in due course in higher taxation. And if half your clients go broke or go back in to employment over the next 18 months, you will need it.

It's a classic free-rider problem and obviously why would any individual turn down free money. On the other side of this there will be heroes (who kept staff on at their own expense etc) and the billionaires who plead poverty. Everyone else is in the middle...

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By puzzel
21st May 2020 21:21

Hmm, currently doing furlough and some other bits for no extra charge.
They don't have any extra income.
Rather keep them than milk them.

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By Alex_T
20th May 2020 21:21

Given the difficulties some are experiencing, this admission makes me uneasy. Please keep in mind those who are struggling. Some will be lucky to have a business by the time this is all over and many have gone to ground already.
Best of luck!

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By puzzel
21st May 2020 21:22

See above.

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RLI
By lionofludesch
20th May 2020 21:37

The SEISS money almost exactly matched my loss of turnover from 1 March to the date of claim. Will that missing turnover come back later? Maybe. I don't know yet. I could have struggled through without the m.oney but I'd already decided to use it to finance pro bono work for some hard cases.

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Replying to lionofludesch:
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By puzzel
21st May 2020 21:23

Agree

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Replying to lionofludesch:
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By 356B
22nd May 2020 12:39

but I'd already decided to use it to finance pro bono work for some hard cases.
That's a new definition of "pro bono"!

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By penelope pitstop
21st May 2020 03:12

Official HMRC Quote:

"HMRC will check claims and take appropriate action to withhold or recover payments found to be dishonest or inaccurate"

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By penelope pitstop
21st May 2020 03:12

Another Quote:

You can claim if you are a self-employed individual or a member of a partnership and you have submitted your tax return for the 2018/19 tax year; traded in the 2019/20 tax year; are trading when you apply (or would be except for Covid-19); intend to continue to trade in the present 2020/21 tax year; and have lost trading profits due to Covid-19.

So, the question to "puzzel" is, have you lost profits due to Covid-19?

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Replying to penelope pitstop:
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By Wanderer
21st May 2020 08:35

penelope pitstop wrote:
..... and have lost trading profits due to Covid-19.

So, the question to "puzzel" is, have you lost profits due to Covid-19?

Don't believe the tosh HMRC and others put out. The regulations say:-
Rishi wrote:

3.3 A claim may only be made in relation to a trade the business of which has been adversely affected by coronavirus or coronavirus disease.
3.4 No claim may be made if it is abusive or is otherwise contrary to the exceptional purpose of SEISS.
Good luck to HMRC trying to argue that this translates exactly and only to 'lost profits'.
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Replying to Wanderer:
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By Tax Dragon
21st May 2020 12:48

3.3, lost profits, I can sort of see where they're coming from (in another context, Portia told me that the test relates to the business, not the proprietor).

I'm not at all sure what 3.4 means, but it seems grey enough to allow a court to interpret it at will. If (if) "the exceptional purpose" is to keep a business alive, and your business would have survived anyway, are you in breach? (Is "the exceptional purpose" defined anywhere?)

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Replying to Tax Dragon:
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By Wanderer
21st May 2020 12:58

Nearest I can find:-

Quote:
Purpose of scheme
2. The purpose of SEISS is to provide for payments to be made to persons carrying on a trade the business of which has been adversely affected by the health, social and economic emergency in the United Kingdom resulting from coronavirus and coronavirus disease.
but then you're going around in circles!
Seems to be a problem with the CV-19 legislation at a number of points, not just the sort of things that accountants deal with. Legislation has been rushed through without proper scrutiny and there are terms that are undefined and laws with no powers of enforcement.
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Replying to Wanderer:
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By Tax Dragon
21st May 2020 13:10

Wanderer wrote:

but then you're going around in circles!

So I am.

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Replying to penelope pitstop:
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By puzzel
21st May 2020 21:25

Basically yes.
I am spending too much time at home with her indoors rather than being out and earning a living.

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Replying to penelope pitstop:
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By puzzel
21st May 2020 21:32

Yes income/profits have been reduced.
For some clients doing furlough and payroll process.
Both take time and still paying my software subscription, don't really have a choice on the latter.
But they have no further income!
If I charge for the extra, would that make the company insolvent?

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By Justin Bryant
21st May 2020 08:35

Don't blame the fraudsters; blame the government for making all this fraud so easy. See: https://www.bbc.co.uk/news/business-52745983

Plus the government's general incompetence in allowing this: https://www.telegraph.co.uk/politics/2020/05/20/peer-milking-taxpayer-fu...

It really beggars belief that (our tax money) cash is being hosed at multi-millionaires and not at needy people like the homeless etc.

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By legerman
21st May 2020 10:30

Your post does come across as bragging to be fair, but in answer to your question, am I entitled to it then yes you are. "Yes my income has dropped during Mar/Apr & May"

But by contrast I know of one accountancy professional who has lost income but not as much as he thought, but also knows that down the line he will be even more adversely affected. His dilemma was whether it was right to claim based on the future rather than the current situation. I've not heard feedback, but I do hope he claimed. It was, however, refreshing to see someone with that moral stance.

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By puzzel
21st May 2020 21:40

Apologies, my intentions were not to brag, but find out how others are getting on.
Although on my own, not a lot of clients, but the income generally sees me through month on month.
Has dropped off with none of the regular standing payments being made.
They are furlough, so no extra income to pay me.

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By codling
21st May 2020 11:13

I am in a holiday area and many of my clients rely on the holiday trade, running cafe's holiday lets, B&B's etc. and therefore my business also does to a substantial extent. I can see that some of my clients will not survive and my billing since March is well down with income coming mainly from a residue of January debtors and February catch-up work. A huge amount of time has been spent on client help and advice and payroll matters from March and most of this will be written off. I don't know how affected my business will be in the longer term but I cannot see this picking up much until later in the year when there is more clarity regarding when the holiday season may open. Clients are, understandably at the moment, reluctant to give me their business records when they are unsure whether they will still have a business in a month or two. I have, therefore, (justifiably, I feel) claimed the SEISS which will be a great help in the short term.

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Replying to codling:
RLI
By lionofludesch
21st May 2020 13:14

codling wrote:
I can see that some of my clients will not survive and my billing since March is well down with income coming mainly from a residue of January debtors and February catch-up work. A huge amount of time has been spent on client help and advice and payroll matters from March and most of this will be written off.

I'm not in a holiday area but could probably justify a claim on the basis of time written off alone.

A lot of work will never be billed.

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Replying to lionofludesch:
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By puzzel
21st May 2020 21:43

As I mentioned above.
Many of use will do the work at no additional cost to our client.
Why, they are not earning an income and if they come through this, they may appretiate us more.

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