HMRC sets out penalty regime for SEISS abuse

The fourth Self-Employed Income Support Scheme (SEISS) grant is now live. From this, Her Majesty’s Revenue & Customs (HMRC) has set out the penalties for abuse of the scheme.

An over-claimed SEISS grant situation can include the following circumstances:

  • Any amount of grant which the self-employed individual was not entitled to receive
  • An amount more than HMRC said the applicant was entitled to when the claim was made

Should there be an overpayment, this must be notified to HMRC within 90 days of receipt of the Self-Employed Income Support Scheme.

When deciding the amount of any penalty, HMRC will check whether the taxpayer knew they were entitled to the SEISS grant when they received it. Also, they will consider when it became repayable or chargeable to tax because of the applicant’s change of circumstances.

The HMRC guidance states: ‘If you knew you were not entitled to your grant and did not tell us in the notification period, the law treats your failure as deliberate and concealed. This means we can charge a penalty of up to 100% on the amount of the SEISS grant that you were not entitled to receive or keep.

‘If you did not know you were not entitled to your grant when you received it, we will only charge you a penalty if you have not repaid the grant by 31st January 2022.’

Danielle Harvey of Harvey, Telford & Bates says:

“At Harvey, Telford & Bates, we pride ourselves on providing business support, assistance and guidance. Therefore, if you believe that you may not have received the correct amount of the Self-Employed Income Support Scheme, we are on-hand to help you.”

For any assistance on this Scheme, or any other issues that you may be experiencing, please contact our expert team by calling us at 01743 462604 or email us at hello@htbaccountants.co.uk

To view the guidance on the Gov.uk website, please click here 

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