Common locum questions relating to coronavirus
This FAQ aims to deal with some of the concerns that will be troubling our locum members in particular, although some will be relevant to all members. Updated 31 March 2020
1. What additional government support might there be?
See Coronavirus: responding to the UK Government announcement on support for the self-employed
We appreciate that accessing the benefits system will be a new and daunting experience for many members. As well as the links to the government website referred to in the link above you may also find useful information on a number of issues including universal credit on the
IPSE website, (the Association of Independent Professionals and the Self Employed).
2. All my work has been cancelled? What can I do?
(b) If you have income protection insurance you should check any policies, although please be aware many insurers do not cover this kind of event
(c) Explore any available government support
There may be useful information at: Tax helpline to support businesses affected by coronavirus (COVID-19)
Please refer to other sources of support at the following links:
3. What about VAT?
Most self-employed earn below the threshold for registering for VAT, which stands at £85,000. The chancellor said he will be deferring VAT for the next quarter, saving businesses £30bn.
4. What about sick pay?
The self-employed can now access in full universal credit at a rate equivalent to statutory sick pay for employees (£94.25 per week up to 28 weeks).
We are unable to offer advice on welfare benefits and we cannot say whether you would qualify but the government website offering more guidance is at gov.uk/universal-credit and gov.uk/guidance/new-style-employment-and-support-allowance.
5. What about my other outgoings?
Mortgages and coronavirus: information for consumers
- For those in rental accommodation you may find useful information at: Complete ban on evictions and additional protection for renters
- If you are experiencing difficulties paying back personal loans or credit card bills as a result of COVID-19, the www.gov.ukwebsite states:
- The Financial Conduct Authority (FCA) called on lenders to use flexibility built into their rules to support consumers, taking into account customers’ individual circumstances. Many major lenders have already made statements to this effect
- If you are experiencing difficulties paying back loans or credit card bills because of COVID-19, you should talk to your lender
- If you agree a payment holiday with your lender, they should record these in such a way that will not impact on your credit score