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Coronavirus Guidance for all businesses

Time to pay arrangements

A business which has or will have outstanding tax liabilities should consider contacting HMRC for a Time to Pay arrangement.

HMRC will consider:

  • agreeing an instalment arrangement, typically over 12 months;

  • suspending debt collection proceedings; and

  • cancelling penalties and interest.

The dedicated helpline – 0800 0159 559 – is open Monday to Friday 8 a.m. to 8 p.m., and Saturday 8 a.m. to 4 p.m.

The ICAEW have set out some tips on negotiating a time to pay arrangement with HMRC, here

Government guidance


Delayed right of forfeiture for business tenancies

The Government has announced that legislation will be enacted to ensure that a business that is unable to meet a rent payment in the next three months will not be forced out of its premises.

Legislation: Coronavirus Act 2020 (section 82 for properties in England and Wales and 83 for properties in Northern Ireland)

Government guidance


Tax Administration

The disruption associated with the COVID-19 pandemic has made it difficult to engage with HMRC and similar bodies. There are revised procedures in place in some instances, as summarised by the CIOT as follows:

The deadline for appealing against a penalty notice isn extended by three months where the business has been affected by COVID-19 (HMRC Guidance).

Depending on the circumstances, HMRC will accept COVID-19 as a reasonable excuse for failing to meet some tax obligations (HMRC Guidance), including with regard to legislation providing for the international exchange of information; eg Country-by-country reporting (CbC), FATCA, DAC6 and the Common Reporting Standard (CRS).


Trade Credit Insurance

The government has announced that it will temporarily guarantee business-to-business transactions currently supported by Trade Credit Insurance.

Content last updated 20 May 2020

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