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Government Help Scheme for Becoming Self-employed

By: Maggie Lonsdale BA (hons) - Updated: 23 Jul 2018 | comments*Discuss
 
Government Help Scheme Self-employed

It makes sense for the Government to encourage people to become self-employed, especially during the current economic downturn. Not only are people creating a job for themselves when employment is hard to come by, but they are contributing their taxes instead of taking money out in benefits.

There is a lot of Government support available for people wishing to become self-employed, although, like so many things, you have to go out there and get it for yourself as it won’t come knocking at your door.

Make it Official

The first thing to note is that it is your responsibility to register as self-employed within three months of Starting Your Business, or you may be faced with a fine of £100. It is very easy – there is a HM Registry & Customs (HMRC) phone number to call and you just quote your National Insurance number. They’ll also send you a very handy information pack which is really worth reading.

For those looking for some extra support, the best place to start is your local Job Centre Plus office. They are not just for people signing on and looking for work, they are great at signposting you to the place that can help.

The Job Centre Resource

The Job Centre is also the place for up-to-date advice on what financial help you can get with becoming self-employed if you have been out of work for some time and claiming benefits. Job centre advisors will now conduct 16 week and 26 week reviews for unemployed people, with options discussed now including potential ideas for self-employment and Starting A Franchise. If this is appealing, you can then be pointed in the right direction for business advice, such as that available from Business Link, or the Prince's Trust for those from ages 18-30.

Other Help

Another option is the New Enterprise Allowance which, from April 2011, gives Jobseeker's Allowance customers access to business mentoring and a financial package worth around £2,000.

It is worth mentioning that in Wales there in an additional scheme called Flexible Support for Business which gives help, advice and possible grants to the newly self-employed.

For many of the schemes, grants and services provided by the Government, participants are given a great deal of support. Once you have accepted the help, you will find that there is a large amount of fabulous resources available that you are entitled to make the most of. After all, when your business is successful you’ll be paying taxes for a long time to come!

What About Freelance Work?

If you are considering using your skills to become a freelancer, follow our guide How To Get Into Freelancing to find out what are you best options.

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[Add a Comment]
bluetaxi - Your Question:
I became a self employed taxi driver 6 months ago, I have been told on countless occasions I do not get any help from the government or any other organization, meaning I might have to give up driving taxis, is this true? And if so, why? Why is it a self employed taxi driver has no entitlement to any sort of grants or subsidies?

Our Response:
If your income is below a certain level you may be entitled to benefits help such as universal credit. If you can’t claim Universal Credit, you might be able to claim existing benefits, including:
Housing Benefit
Child Tax Credit
Working Tax Credit.
ACareerChange - 24-Jul-18 @ 11:51 AM
I became a self employed taxi driver 6 months ago, i have been told on countless occasions i do not get any help from the government or any other organization, meaning i might have to give up driving taxis, is this true? And if so, why? Why is it a self employed taxi driver has no entitlement to any sort of grants or subsidies?
bluetaxi - 23-Jul-18 @ 4:53 PM
Hello I am a MCA degree holder. I am thinking to start a computer training center in my village. I need suggestion n materials. Thankyou.
Ghagana Linga - 21-May-18 @ 9:18 AM
Hi I have recently became self employed and have been struggling with finances as I am a single parent is there any help I can get until my business picks up
Lisa - 20-Mar-18 @ 5:03 PM
Jeskatp - Your Question:
Hi I a currently self employed I was with people plus under there work program but I was never shown how to do self assements and I’m struggling with that and the financial side of things I’m supposed to have there help until the 28th December but I never get a call back

Our Response:
Citizens Advice may be able to help or you can try the HMRC helplines or You Tube videos. If you're still stuck and you’re on a low income (up to about £380 a week), you may be able to get free professional advice including help with filling in forms - contact Tax Aid
ACareerChange - 12-Dec-17 @ 3:17 PM
Hi I a currently self employed I was with people plus under there work program but I was never shown how to do self assements and I’m struggling with that and the financial side of things I’m supposed to have there help until the 28th December but I never get a call back
Jeskatp - 11-Dec-17 @ 11:10 AM
Hi I am looking for help with grants to expand on my massage work. recently registered as self employed but looking for financial support for further courses and equipment have been employed part time upto now but wish to continue working solely on freelance work
Jane87 - 8-Mar-17 @ 5:58 PM
ella - Your Question:
I have currently just lost my job, I want to go self employed working in my community helping elderly with day to day tasks, can I get help with rent and council tax,can I get any other help I found nobody will help me and I am skint I don't know what to do

Our Response:
Your local job centre plus should be able to give you all the information you need in terms of what you can claim - you may be eligible for the Enterprise Allowance
ACareerChange - 4-Oct-16 @ 12:29 PM
I have currently just lost my job, I want to go self employed working in my community helping elderly with day to day tasks, can I get help with rent and council tax,can I get any other help I found nobody will help me and I am skint I don't know what to do
ella - 3-Oct-16 @ 5:28 PM
Hi there, i'm currently in receipt of ESA and PIP. I want to get back to work and it would appear that my best option is as a freelancer. In order to do this the companies I'm looking at want my self employment ref. number. I've been to the job centre and unfortunately they messed me around sending me on a small business course which I completed only to be told I didn't qualify because of my benefit status. I am desperate to move past my illness but am struggling and confused. Can you help please?
sjc - 1-Sep-16 @ 3:39 PM
Whiter - Your Question:
Hi I've worked in building trade for 17 years as a joiner but recently became unemployed so I'm going to start up on my own! I'm looking what kind of grants or loans are available I have a bad credit rating this might be a problem?

Our Response:
It may affect your chances of certain types of loan but there are some goverment backed schemes that you may qualify for. Ask at job centre plus about schemes such as the the New Entreprise Allowance
ACareerChange - 15-Aug-16 @ 1:00 PM
Hi I've worked in building trade for 17 years as a joiner but recently became unemployed so I'm going to start up on my own! I'm looking what kind of grants or loans are available I have a bad credit rating this might be a problem?
Whiter - 12-Aug-16 @ 6:03 PM
hello i want to start a new power loom manufacturing unit in bangalore so please help me
mith - 27-May-16 @ 10:57 AM
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Nordic - 20-May-16 @ 9:02 AM
I want to start a xerox stationary shop so I need a financial help I was patient of mdrtb so I request to help me
manouj - 8-Apr-16 @ 6:25 PM
vanman - Your Question:
Hi I have been out of work for 12months I have a big van and want to use it has a man with van.ie small removals.any thing that needs removing.there is loads of man with van in most towns but many of them only to it part time I am sure there is an opening for it full time.would there be any help going self employed

Our Response:
Firstly speak to your local Job Centre Plus Work Coach. You may be entitled to the New Enterprise Allowance, which also gives you access to a business mentor etc.
ACareerChange - 16-Mar-16 @ 11:50 AM
Hi I have been out of work for 12months I have a big van and want to use it has a man with van.ie small removals.any thing that needs removing.there is loads of man with van in most towns but many of them only to it part time I am sure there is an opening for it full time.would there be any help going self employed
vanman - 15-Mar-16 @ 5:17 PM
I am presently unemployed in NI. I have been informed that there is a possibility of work driving coaches for tour operators. Is there any financial assistance available to obtain the required PSV/PCV licence, which will cost about £1,150?
Sodie - 10-Mar-16 @ 12:27 PM
After being out of work for a number of years due to being a family members carer, I am trying to find funding for plant machinery so that I can get back to work. Not only does it get me back in work,and not claiming, but it would give me the opportunity to be self employed and in the position to give work to someone else. Win win ! I have only found funding for companies to give their employees, not for people to get IN to work !! PLEASE HELP !!
Shaun - 25-Feb-16 @ 10:35 PM
I have been working in property maintenance for about 10 yrs and after being let down have decided to go on my own I wouldn't be able to claim benefits because I left my job but is there any help out there for me
Roy1969 - 16-Feb-16 @ 12:39 PM
Igor - Your Question:
Hi. I'm a very skilled cleaner and I work in a company cleaning schools. Me and my brother work together and we have an idea to open a company or to become self employed. We now how to work with all cleaning machinery and products. Our idea is to do "private" cleaning, doing house by House cleaning everything (carpets, windows, walls, all kind of hard floors, remove limescale from everywhere, etc) and we would like to know how to start the first step, how we can be helped with some monetary help, where to go as we live in Bournemouth. Waiting hopefully for some response and advice to know if it worth. Thanks

Our Response:
Great idea and good luck. Bournemouth Council has some good resources for you here
ACareerChange - 3-Feb-16 @ 2:46 PM
Hi. I'm a very skilled cleaner and I work in a company cleaning schools. Me and my brother work together and we have an idea to open a company or to become self employed. We now how to work with all cleaning machinery and products. Our idea is to do "private" cleaning, doing house by House cleaning everything (carpets, windows, walls, all kind of hard floors, remove limescale from everywhere, etc) and we would like to know how to start the first step, how we can be helped with some monetary help, where to go as we live in Bournemouth. Waiting hopefully for some response and advice to know if it worth. Thanks
Igor - 3-Feb-16 @ 12:48 AM
Hi there I'm currently a self employed subcontractorworking for a company threw a friend . Been wanting to be come my own boss for a long time but the wages and family commitment only just see us by , I'm a fully qualified external wall insulate installer / renderer and would like to see if there was any help out there to help me get tools/ transport to start myself off , my credits out the window , thanks
Jamie - 22-Jan-16 @ 10:46 AM
Hi i am on long term sick with mental health issues and looking for some advice on plumbing courses and could i get any funding or help regarding the cost of the course,i'm claiming ESA and would like to be self employed in the near future
Foxy - 19-Oct-15 @ 12:46 PM
Kevin - Your Question:
Hi my name is Kevin , I'm currently receiving esa as I'm in remission from cancer I would appreciate any information about help such as start up grants as I want to come off benefits and be my own boss , I have researched my idea and have a lot of backing from the public because of my idea , which is taking orders from people and delivering it to them when they wish to have it delivered especially the elderly. My idea is becoming a greengrocer who delivers on a daily basis to anyone that needs fresh fruit and vegetables , I will also be mobile for people who haven't ordered their goods as I would be a street vendor at the same time. Where I live there is a great deal of high rise towers of which house mostly elderly folk , I have spoken to a majority or them and every one of them think it's the best thing since sliced bread , they are also very appreciative for what I would be doing for them as most of them don't get across the doors especially winter time so they wouldn't even have to come out of the house if they didn't wish to do so , even if they were able to do so they haven't got the burden of carrying their goods back home as I would be doing it for them. Any financial help would be a godsend not only to me but to the many folk who would also benefit from my idea. Thank you for reading my comment

Our Response:
Sounds like a promising idea. The National Enterprise Allowance might be relevant. There's more information on this government page or try our article on Funding for unemployed entrepreneurs
ACareerChange - 8-Oct-15 @ 11:11 AM
Hi my name is Kevin , I'm currently receiving esa as I'm in remission from cancer I would appreciate any information about help such as start up grants as I want to come off benefits and be my own boss , I have researched my idea and have a lot of backing from the public because of my idea , which is taking orders from people and delivering it to them when they wish to have it delivered especially the elderly . My idea is becoming a greengrocer who delivers on a daily basis to anyone that needs fresh fruit and vegetables , I will also be mobile for people who haven't ordered their goods as I would be a street vendor at the same time . Where I live there is a great deal of high rise towers of which house mostly elderly folk , I have spoken to a majority or them and every one of them think it's the best thing since sliced bread , they are also very appreciative for what I would be doing for them as most of them don't get across the doors especially winter time so they wouldn't even have to come out of the house if they didn't wish to do so , even if they were able to do so they haven't got the burden of carrying their goods back home as I would be doing it for them . Any financial help would be a godsend not only to me but to the many folk who would also benefit from my idea . Thank you for reading my comment
Kevin - 7-Oct-15 @ 11:21 PM
@Dan. You may be entitled to housing benefit to help with council tax/rent etc - Check out the Turn 2 Us website for more information about what you can claim as a self employed person. Also there is some great advice about starting out as a self employed person on this this government page. The other articles in our Self Employed Section should also be useful. Good luck
ACareerChange - 16-Jan-15 @ 10:39 AM
hi there, I recently got made redundant, and have just went self employed. Is there any help I can get with my rent or council tax?? any advice would be good.. thanks
dan - 14-Jan-15 @ 5:38 PM
@sue. Start with this article on our site and then check out the other information in the selfemployed section.
ACareerChange - 11-Nov-14 @ 12:48 PM
how do I go about getting help setting up my own business any info would be muchly appreciated
sue - 10-Nov-14 @ 12:01 PM
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