Business owners are being urged to make the most of Government support to help manage cashflow and trading challenges as a result of the coronavirus crisis.

Kendal-based accountancy and business advisory firm MHA Moore and Smalley, says owner-managed businesses should be speaking with HMRC as soon as possible about deferring tax payments and accessing other support.

This included Time to Pay arrangements, which enable employers to take longer to pay VAT in installments.

Rachel Marsdin, tax partner at MHA Moore and Smalley, said: “It’s absolutely critical that small and medium-sized businesses engage with HMRC as soon as possible, rather than waiting to see how they will be affected.

“When HMRC launched Time to Pay following the 2008 banking crisis, they were a lot more accommodating than many businesses thought they would be, and we were able to help many businesses negotiate later payments.

“Business owners should now be seeking professional advice on negotiating with HMRC to agree their tax deferment and repayment plans.

“This is very tricky situation for businesses to be in, but there will also be opportunities when this is over.

"Businesses need to go on a war footing immediately and make sure they take advantage of all the support available to be able to come out the other side.”

MHA Moore and Small has launched a dedicated coronavirus planning and guidance hub bringing together information on Government support available to businesses.