Wednesday, October 21, 2020

Millions in Payout for the Self Employed

Finance Minister promises weekly benefit for self-employed persons not in the tourism sector

Deputy Prime Minister and Minister of Finance Peter Turnquest said his ministry is budgeting over $5.9 million to assist self-employed persons who work outside of the tourism industry, impacted by the emergency order, due to COVID-19.

In the House of Assembly on Wednesday, Turnquest said 7000 people meet the criteria for assistance, stating that they too, face loss of income, like those in the tourism sector because of the lock-down.

Turnquest said licensed self-employed persons outside of tourism trade, will receive a benefit payment of $200 per week for the length of the quarantine period, which at present will go until April 8th.

He said this benefit will be paid for a period corresponding to the period of the ongoing emergency orders.

National Insurance Board (NIB), the Public Treasury, and clearing banks are assisting with the payment and will strive to do so in a timely manner, Turnquest said.

NIB will administer the expansion and will announce the related steps for these persons

and applications beginning Tuesday, April 7.

Self-employed persons must ensure they meet the following requirements:

● The self-employed person must have a valid business license issued by the Department of

Inland Revenue

● They must have no additional employees. A sole proprietor with employees can apply for

the government’s Small Business Continuity Loan programme.

● The self-employed person must have and provide a copy of their National Insurance Board

Card or other government ID with their NIB number.

● They must not be in full time employment and thus eligible for other NIB employment

benefit

● They must be able to demonstrate active income from their related business in either

January or February 2020. This could for example be in the form of a copy of a bank

statement showing business related inflow for the month. This provision is to ensure that

only persons with active businesses obtain consideration.

● They must either be registered as self-employed with NIB or become registered at

application for this benefit.

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