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Cabbies wanting to benefit from the Scottish Government's financial support scheme have 3 days left


Image credit: Pixabay

In recognition of the significant financial hardships and risks for businesses as a result of the coronavirus protective measures, the Scottish Government has made available a range of grants to businesses.


Scotland’s Highland Council has been asked to deliver a number of these grant schemes on behalf of the Scottish Government – one of which is the Taxi and Private Hire Driver Support Fund.

On 9 December 2020, the Scottish Government announced its intention to establish this specific fund to provide financial support to taxi and private hire vehicle drivers in Scotland in recognition of the significant disruption that they have experienced as a result of restrictions introduced to control the spread of COVID-19.


This fund has now launched and is providing one-off grants of £1,500 to those who meet the eligibility criteria. Further details on this announcement can be found at the Scottish Government’s website or at FindBusinessSupport.scot.

Taxi drivers in receipt of state benefits payments (Universal Credit, Statutory Sick Pay, Employment and Support Allowance, Job Seekers’ Allowance, Income Support) are eligible.


The council has stressed that it will be for drivers, based on their individual financial circumstances, to consider any implications tax wise or indeed for other financial support and benefits that they receive.


Eligibility criteria:


To apply for this grant, applicants are required to be licensed for the period 9 October 2020 to at least 31 January 2021; this excludes all drivers whose licences were suspended on or before 31 December 2020, and that remains current and valid. You must not have breached wider COVID regulations/requirements prior to local restrictions.


Drivers must confirm (self-declaration) that up to 31 December 2020:

  • they have experienced loss of income as a taxi or private hire driver (50% of turnover, compared with 2019) and incurred overhead costs and expenses;

  • they are or have been working or available for work as a taxi or private hire driver;

  • they do not have connections to tax havens, as set out in the Coronavirus (Scotland) (No.2) Act 2020.

  • they have not applied for this grant from any other Local Authority.

The closing date for applications to this scheme has been extended to 5pm on 25 March.


Those applicants who are receiving Universal Credit:


If you have received a grant through the Taxi and Private Hire Vehicle Driver Support Fund this will not now affect any Universal Credit payments you are also receiving.


Drivers will still need to declare the grant to the Department of Work and Pensions, but they have confirmed that any grants paid through this scheme will not count towards any Universal Credit entitlement.


A spokesperson for Highland Council said: “We contacted all licensed taxi and private hire vehicle drivers in our area January to invite them to verify their eligibility for this grant. If you have been put off replying to the fund because you were unsure how this would affect any Universal Credit payments you are receiving, please act now to claim the £1500 grant. We have extended the closing date for claims to 25 March 2021.”

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