Apply for the Newly Self-Employed Hardship Fund


The purpose of this fund is to provide hardship relief to newly self-employed individuals who have not been able to access support through other schemes or have exhausted all other avenues for business support. To be eligible you must meet all of the following criteria. If you receive the grant you can continue to work or take on other employment including voluntary work.

Information You Should Have Before You Start

You will be asked to provide electronic (photograph or PDF) evidence of documents. You can upload the photos of these documents from your computer, or, you can complete this form on your phone and take the picture of your documents whilst completing the form.

You will need:

  • Proof of identity, ideally photographic (for example a valid passport or driving licence) – mandatory
  • Proof of address (for example a recent council tax bill or utility bill) – mandatory
  • Evidence of active trading up to March 2020:

Three forms of evidence:

  • Bank statements (business or personal) covering 3 months to March 2020 showing income and outgoings from self-employment (Mandatory requirement)

And any 2 of

  • A supplier or reseller trade account (active)
  • Valid business insurance
  • HMRC Unique Taxpayer Reference (if registered). If not yet registered, copy of correspondence/other details showing registration is being sought/or provide further details to explain position.
  • VAT Registration Number
  • Marketing materials for your business, eg business website, active social media – provide web links
  • Other evidence of business activity to support your claim (eg correspondence with customers or suppliers)

Please carefully read and confirm the qualification criteria​
Yes / No Criteria
The business is registered and trading in this Local Authority area
Became self-employed on/after 6th April 2019 (did not submit a tax return including income from self-employment for 2018-19)​
Over 50% of individual income is from self-employment
Trading profits below £50,000 in financial year 2019-20​
Can provide evidence of active trading up to March 2020 and intend to continue trading in the tax year 2020-21​
Have lost business due to coronavirus and experience personal financial hardship as a result​
Ineligible for other COVID-19 related business support (including the Business Interruption Loan Schemes, Corporate Finance Fund, Job Retention Schemes, Future Fund, R&D Focussed SMEs Fund, HMRC Self-Employment Income Support Scheme, Non-Domestic Rates relief, Small Business Grant or other business support)​
Do not receive working age benefit payments (Universal Credit, Statutory Sick Pay, Employment and Support Allowance, Job Seekers’ Allowance, Income Support) or have applied for but not yet started receiving Universal Credit or an advanced payment of Universal Credit
Trade as self-employed, not as a limited company. If in a partnership, are self-employed for pay and tax purposes.
Have taken steps to limit costs and expenditure (including through schemes such as VAT deferral and seeking a mortgage payment holiday) ​
Do not have access to sufficient savings or other sources of income to meet basic needs ​
I understand that my application and supporting documents may be subject to verification/audit. If any part of the declaration is subsequently found to be incorrect I may be required to repay the grant. If I am found to have knowingly provided false information my application could be subject to fraud referral. ​