Discretionary Grant Scheme

Frequently Asked Questions (FAQ's)

My business has suffered a significant reduction in trade but I am unsure if it is under or over 30%?

You know your business best. In order to apply, you must reasonably believe that you have suffered a significant reduction in trading profits due to reduced business activity, capacity, demand or inability to trade due to coronavirus. You must provide evidence that shows how your business has been impacted by coronavirus resulting in less business activity than otherwise expected.

When filling out the application form you will be required to declare that the information provided is correct and if any information provided is later found to be false, repayment of funding may be required and depending on circumstances criminal proceedings might be instigated.

I operate my business with a personal bank account, not a business one – Do I qualify for this grant?

Yes - The Scottish Government would prefer businesses to have a formal Business Bank Account but have advised that a normal bank account that is used mainly for your business that shows income and outgoings and is in your/or the business name, is acceptable.

Can I apply for the Discretionary Grant Scheme although I have received a grant before October 2020?

Yes you can apply.

Can I apply for the Discretionary Grant Scheme even if I have received a grant since October 2020?

If you have received grant support from another grant scheme (which is greater in value than the Discretionary Grant Scheme) or are eligible for one of the new grant schemes the Scottish Government is going to launch, you will not be able to apply for a grant. Please use the links provided to check whether there are other UK or Scottish Government grant schemes available.

There is one exception and this relates to the value of grant secured from other grant schemes or the the UK Government’s Self-Employed Income Support Scheme (SEISS).

If you have secured less that £2,000 and you meet the other criteria, you may be able to secure a top-up grant to make up the difference between the value of your support from the other grant scheme or SEISS and the current value of the Discretionary Grant (£2,000).

If the Council is able to afford to pay out extra grant beyond the original £2,000 Discretionary Grant, then the threshold for a top-up grant also increases. If you have secured less that £4,000 and you meet the other criteria, you may be able to secure a top-up grant to make up the difference between the value of your support from the other grant scheme or SEISS and the revised value of the Discretionary Grant (£2,000 plus any top-up grant provided).

My business has more than one director – Is it possible to have a grant for each director?

No – the grant is awarded per business and not per director.

I am the director of more than one business – Can all businesses apply for the grant?

Yes – each business can apply individually for a grant.

Will I receive money from the Discretionary Grant Scheme on a monthly basis?

No – at the current time the £2,000 grant you receive is a one-off payment. If however, the Council is able to afford to pay out extra grant beyond the original £2,000 Discretionary Grant, an additional top-up payment (potentially up to £2,000) may be made. The availability of this funding will only be known after all applications have been received and assessed and the initial £2,000 grant is paid out.

If a top-up grant is to be provided, businesses will receive this automatically and will not have to reapply. Any announcement will be made on the Council’s website and by a Press and social media release and businesses are asked not to contact the Council enquiring as to if and when a top-up grant will be provided.

My business is a Bed and Breakfast and I have not received any grant aid – What can I do?

On 21 January 2021 the Scottish Government announced that B&B's, which do not pay non-domestic rates but who pay Council Tax, will be able to secure grant support. The Council is awaiting details of this grant scheme from the Scottish Government. Once this is received, details will be provided here on eligibility and how to apply for grant. B&B owners are asked not to contact the Council meantime.

I don’t have the opportunity to fill in the online application – Is there an alternative process?

Yes – please email COVID-19discretionarygrants@highland.gov.uk and request a paper application form. You will receive this via email and will be able to print and post your forms and evidence.

If I don’t qualify for this grant, what other support is available?

The Highland Council have only been asked to administer certain grant schemes, but a number of others do exist. For example some of those run directly by the UK Government are still continuing or have been revised and we’ve tried to give some advice and links that might be of use.

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