Covid-19 update: CBILS, R&D tax relief and more

March 25th, 2020

Coronavirus Business Interruption Loan Scheme (CBILS)

The CBILS is now available, with some 40 participating lenders through which funding can be sought.

The advice being given by the British Business Bank is to apply to your usual lender first, as any decision-making on whether you are eligible is fully delegated to CBILS lenders.

CBILS supports a wide range of business finance facilities, including:

It is important to know that if the lender can offer finance on normal commercial terms without the need to make use of the scheme, then they will do so.

The scheme is designed to support smaller businesses (SMEs) who do not meet a lender’s normal requirements for a fully commercial loan or other facility, but who are considered viable in the longer-term.

To apply for CBILS, the business needs to have a borrowing proposal which, were it not for the COVID-19 pandemic, would be considered viable by the lender, and for which the lender believes the provision of finance will enable the business to trade out of any short-to-medium term difficulty.

Champion has considerable experience in helping our clients secure the right business finance package. Speak to our expert team about creating a lending proposal that is needed to secure the right funding for your business in these demanding times.

Making the most of R&D tax relief

In this unprecedented time, your company’s cash flow is critical.

If you are an SME whose projects qualify for R&D tax relief, then you can:

Champion’s highly experienced R&D tax team are on hand to discuss how to maximise the effectiveness of your R&D claim and confirm whether your business will qualify for this valuable tax relief.

Please email our R&D team to find out more:

During this difficult time, the team are available to talk via FaceTime, Skype or conference call, and help get your claim moving forward.

Help with VAT payments

The Chancellor confirmed on Friday (20.3.2020) that VAT-registered businesses will not be required to pay any VAT liabilities to HMRC from now until the end of June 2020. Businesses can then spread the payment of these unpaid VAT liabilities, which have built up over this period, until 31st March 2021.

This is an automatic deferral and no application is required to HMRC. To take advantage of this cash flow relief we recommend that you consider taking those steps necessary to ensure that your next VAT payment is withheld. For example, this may mean stopping the direct debit that you have in place.

Filing relief

As of today, businesses will be able to apply to Companies House for a 3-month extension on filing their accounts. All companies who apply for an extension as a result of COVID-19 will automatically be granted the extension without needing to provide evidence.

The same extension will apply to submission of the Corporation Tax return. A company will not be liable to the flat rate penalty for late submission of a tax return if the return is delivered no later than the last day for the delivery of those accounts to the registrar of companies.

Please note: this only protects the company from the fixed penalty. The tax-geared penalty will arise 18 months after the return period, if any tax remains unpaid at the 18-month date.

COVID-19: Remain up to date with Champion

We’re committed to ensuring that our clients remain informed of the latest news and updates from Government. In response, we have launched a dedicated COVID-19 resource centre on the Champion Accountants website, which will host all our ongoing communications around the subject.

To keep informed, be sure to visit

A polite request to our clients

With the entire Champion team now working effectively from home, we ask that clients do not send us any communications via post unless absolutely necessary. Where possible, please ensure all information is sent via email to ensure it reaches the right team members in a timely fashion.

Arrangements have been made to ensure that we collect any post that arrives at our offices and we will continue to update clients whose registered address is Champion of any ongoing postal communications that we receive.

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