Coronavirus - COVID-19
Business Assistance

We hope you all stay safe and well during this difficult time.


The virus is affecting businesses as well as health.


Please see below some links which we hope you will find helpful:


From SMBC’s (Sandwell Metropolitan Borough Council) Website


Coronavirus: Support for Sandwell Businesses

For Businesses
Here is the latest COVID-19 government guidance for employers and businesses. It includes advice about short-term business rates relief and the package of government support available to businesses.

This is the latest guidance on which businesses and premises must close (following the Prime Minister’s address on Monday 23 March).

For premises still open, here is government guidance on cleaning

Statutory Sick Pay
Small businesses (fewer than 250 employees) will be able to claim back the cost of providing Statutory Sick Pay (for up to 14 days) to any employee due to coronavirus. The government is drawing up the rebate scheme and we will update this page when we know how you can apply. 

Coronavirus Job Retention Scheme
The Coronavirus Job Retention Scheme means UK employers can access support to continue paying part of the salaries of employees who are on temporary leave (‘furloughed workers’) during this crisis. The online service to make a claim isn’t live yet, but you can find out whether your business is eligible and how much you can claimExplainer: what are ‘furloughed’ workers? The Black Country Chamber of Commerce‘s page of valuable briefing papers - ‘Managing the impact of coronavirus’ – includes one on furlough leave. 

Business Rates
See Sandwell Council‘s page for the latest on local business rates

Here is info on what Sandwell Council is doing to support businesses, including suspending court action for recovery of business rates, and negotiating payments where possible. 

Coronavirus Business Interruption Loans
Coronavirus Business Interruption Loans are now available through participating lenders, delivered through British Business Bank.


Here are the answers to SMEs’ frequently asked questions

Deferring VAT and Income Tax Payments
The government is providing support around deferring VAT and income tax payments

If you can’t pay your business tax bill due to coronavirus you can reach the HMRC Coronavirus Helpline for free on 0800 0159 559. The line is open on Monday to Friday from 8am to 8pm and on Saturday from 8am to 4pm. 


From HMRC Website


The above information is likely to change so please confer with SMBC and HMRC where necessary.

We hope you all stay safe and well.


Thank you.