Additional Restrictions Grant FAQs

For further information and guidance on the ARG scheme please refer to our frequently asked questions below.

Is my business eligible for the Additional Restrictions Grant (ARG)?

The ARG scheme applies where local restrictions (LCAL3) are put in place or where a widespread national lockdown is announced.  Businesses must have been trading on 4th November 2020 to be eligible to receive grant support in Stage 1 of the ARG scheme.

Applications for the Additional Restriction Grant will be available on a phased or staged basis as follows:

Stage 1: National restrictions 5th November 2020 – 2nd December 2020

1A – Businesses that are legally required to close and have commercial premises, but that do not have Non-Domestic Rates liability.

1B – Businesses that are legally required to close and do not have commercial premises

1C – Businesses that are not legally required to close but are significantly impacted by the national restrictions – businesses with Non-Domestic Rates liability. This scheme is for businesses that mainly supply their goods and services directly into the hospitality, accommodation and leisure sectors.

1D - Businesses that are not legally required to close but are significantly impacted by the national restrictions – businesses with commercial premises but that do not have Non-Domestic Rates liability. This scheme is for businesses that mainly supply their goods and services directly into the hospitality, accommodation and leisure sectors.

1E - Businesses that are not legally required to close but are significantly impacted by the national restrictions – businesses that do not have commercial premises. This scheme is for businesses that mainly supply their goods and services directly into the hospitality, accommodation and leisure sectors.

Please refer to Dudley Council’s Additional Restrictions Grant (ARG) Policy for full eligibility criteria.

 

How do I know if my business has been forced to close?

The government has defined the types of businesses forced to closed. Further information can be found on the government website.

 

I previously received a grant, will I automatically receive a payment or do I need to submit a new application?

All businesses are required to confirm that they are eligible to receive the Additional Restrictions Grant, therefore you must submit a new application.  The current round of funding is completely separate to the Small Business Grant, Discretionary Grant Fund or Retail, Hospitality and Leisure Grant schemes that operated in March-August 2020 and has different eligibility criteria.

 

How much money could my business get?

Awarding of grants will be at the Council’s discretion, in line with the Dudley Council ARG policy AND specified BEIS eligibility criteria.

 

How long will it take to receive my grant payment?

We are working hard to support businesses as quickly as possible.  A decision will be made as soon as practicable after an application is received. In order for us to process applications as quickly as possible, please do not chase your application but check your status on the self-serve grant approval portal.

We will also be using the grant approval to communicate with you if any further information is required to support your application.

 

Could you give me some examples of businesses who may be eligible for the ARG?

The examples below are subject to the applicant meeting all of the other eligibility criteria for the category in which they are applying.

  • A non-essential retailer without rates liability but pays a business rates contribution or commercial rent to their landlord may find that they are eligible under ARG 1A
  • A mobile hairdresser who doesn’t have a business premises but hires a commercial vehicle may find that they are eligible under ARG 1B
  • A commercial caterer operating from an industrial premises for which they have the business rates liability may find themselves to be eligible under 1C
  • An event production company that rents warehouse space from a larger company for a single all-inclusive rental fee may find themselves eligible under 1D
  • A wedding planning company working from home with professional liability insurance costs may find themselves to be eligible under 1E

 

What happens if I apply for the wrong grant scheme?

Your application can only be considered against the criteria set for the scheme you have applied for.  The first stage of the application will guide you to self-declare against the eligibility criteria.  This will help you to ensure that you are applying for the correct scheme.  If you want to change the scheme you are applying for you will need to complete a new application for the relevant scheme. 

Applications are non-transferrable.

 

My business gets small business rate relief; am I eligible for ARG?

No.  If you get Small Business Rates Relief it means that you are a business rates payer for these purposes; it’s just that you’re a business rates payer who gets a bill for £0.

If you are a business rates payer (or get Small Business Rates Relief) and have been required by law to close under the national restrictions you will need to apply for the LRSG (Closed) grant which is open available at https://www.dudleybusinessfirst.org.uk/coronavirus-business-guidance/financial-help-for-businesses/

If you are a business rates payer (or get Small Business Rates Relief) and have not been legally required to close but are significantly impacted and mainly supply your goods and services directly into the hospitality, accommodation and leisure sectors you may be eligible for ARG 1C.

 

Who can claim the grant?

In all cases Government has stated that the person who will receive the grant will be the person who, according to the Council’s records, was the ratepayer in respect of the hereditament at the effective date.

Where there is no entry in the rating list for the business, the Council will have discretion to determine who should receive the grant.

 

I am a self-employed business, am I eligible for this fund?

Yes. Self-employed businesses who meet the criteria set out in our policy are eligible to apply.

Please note this scheme is not intended to pay employee wages, it is to support businesses with significant fixed costs.

To find out what other financial support may be available for you and your business visit the Business Coronavirus Support Finder.

 

Can the council claim back the money?

As an applicant you must provide true, accurate information when applying for the grant.  If it is established that any award has been made incorrectly due to error, misrepresentation or incorrect information provided to the Council by an applicant or their representative(s) the council reserves the right to recover any grant paid in full.

This matter is mentioned frequently throughout the grant application process, and you must sign to state that you understand this when applying for a grant.

 

If I am not happy with a decision can I appeal?

There is no appeals process for this scheme.

The Council’s formal ‘Complaints Procedure’ will be applied in the event of any complaint received about this scheme. https://www.dudley.gov.uk/council-community/compliments-comments-complaints/

 

Is the grant subject to Tax?

The Government has confirmed that all payments under the scheme are taxable.

 

What do ‘in administration’, ‘insolvent’ and ‘striking off notice’ mean?

Please visit https://www.gov.uk/government/publications/liquidation-and-insolvency/liquidation-and-insolvency for more information.

 

What is State Aid and does it apply to this grant?

The Additional Restrictions Grant (ARG) is a grant provided by a public authority, therefore it is subject to State Aid rules.

Any grant is given as aid under the Temporary Framework for State Aid measures to support the economy in the current COVID-19 outbreak published on 19 March 2020. This means that businesses receiving support under these provisions can receive up to €800,000 in aid over three years (being the current and previous two years).

In compliance with EU law on State Aid the applicant will need to declare to the Council if the have received any other de minimus State Aid or aid provided under the EU Commission COVID-19 Temporary Framework.

 

I have a question about the Local Restrictions Support Grant (LRSG), can you help?

Dudley Council’s Business Rates team is administering the LRSG (Closed) grants, if your question is in relation to this scheme and not the ARG scheme please view eligibility and criteria for this scheme here.  If you still have questions or queries please contact them direct on 0300 555 8000 or businessratesgrants@dudley.gov.uk.

 

The grant approval portal is not accepting my business rates details, can you help?

Please ensure you are entering the Property Reference Number and not your Business Rates Account Number. The Property reference number can be found on the left-hand side of the main section on your business rates bill, above the property address.

 

I am struggling with completing my application, where can I go for further help?

Due to current high volumes of calls, and to ensure we can process applications as quickly as possible please contact us via email on discretionary.grant@dudley.gov.uk

 

Do I have to apply online?

Yes. All applications must be made via the self-serve online portal, unfortunately applications cannot be made in any other format.

If you do struggle with ICT, it is permissible for an applicant’s intermediary to apply on their behalf (i.e. Accountant or similar).