Recovery Loan Scheme (RLS)

Recovery Loan Scheme (RLS)

The new iteration of the Recovery Loan Scheme (RLS) launched in August 2022 and is designed to support access to finance for UK small businesses as they look to invest and grow.

The Recovery Loan Scheme aims to improve the terms on offer to borrowers. If we can offer your business a commercial loan for the same amount, on similar or better terms, that doesn’t require the guarantee provided by the Recovery Loan Scheme, then we will.

Businesses that took out a CBILS, CLBILS, BBLS or RLS facility before 30 June 2022 are not prevented from accessing RLS from August 2022, although in some cases it may reduce the amount a business can borrow.

Recovery Loan Scheme-backed facilities are provided at the discretion of the lender. Lenders are required to undertake their standard credit and fraud checks for all applicants.

British Business Bank

We are a confirmed accredited lender of the government-backed Recovery Loan Scheme.

If you require additional information about the scheme, please visit the British Business Bank website.

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Recovery Loan Scheme Features

  • Up to £2m facility per business group: The maximum amount of a facility provided under the scheme is £2m per business group for borrowers outside the scope of the Northern Ireland Protocol, and up to £1m per business group for Northern Ireland Protocol borrowers. Minimum facility size it £25,001.

A borrower in scope of the Northern Ireland Protocol may borrow up to £1m per business group, unless such borrower operates in a sector where aid limits are reduced, in which case the maximum that can be borrowed is subject to a lower cap. These include agriculture, fisheries / aquaculture and road freight haulage.

  • Term length: Choose a repayment term between 1-6 years
  • Personal Guarantees: A Personal Guarantee may be required. Principal Private Residences cannot be taken as security within the Scheme.
  • Guarantee is to the lender: The scheme provides the lender with a 70% government-backed guarantee against the outstanding balance of the facility after it has completed its normal recovery process. The borrower always remains 100% liable for the debt.
  • Subsidy: The assistance provided through RLS, like many Government-backed business support activities, is regarded as a subsidy and is deemed to benefit the borrower. There is a limit to the amount of subsidy that may be received by a borrower, and its wider group, over any rolling three-year period. Any previous subsidy may reduce the amount a business can borrow.

All borrowers in receipt of a subsidy from a publicly-funded programme should be provided with a written statement, confirming the level and type of aid received.

Borrowers will need to provide written confirmation that receipt of the RLS facility will not mean that the business exceeds the maximum amount of subsidy they are allowed to receive.

  • Northern Ireland Protocol: All borrowers will need to answer some questions to determine whether they are inside or outside the scope of the Northern Ireland Protocol, to determine the relevant subsidy limit and hence the potential maximum amount they can borrow under RLS.

Can I apply?

Your business must:

  • Be UK-based with a turnover of up to £45 million
  • Have a viable business proposition
  • Not be subject to any insolvency proceedings
  • Ensure the Loan is for business purposes
  • Not have breached any rules under previous Government Lending Schemes

What do I need to apply?

You will need to provide certain documents when you apply for an RLS-backed Loan, these could include:

  • Management accounts
  • 3 years worth of historic accounts
  • The amount of any previous subsidy received
  • Details of assets

Industry Eligibility

The following industries are not eligible under the Recovery Loan Scheme

  • Banks, Building Societies, Insurers and Reinsurers (excluding Insurance Brokers)
  • Public sector bodies, and
  • State funded primary and secondary schools

Enquire about the Recovery Loan Scheme

If you have a Relationship Manager please contact them on the usual number, otherwise call 0345 300 0268.

Lines are open 8am to 6pm Monday to Friday, except public holidays.

Business Finance Support

The British Business Bank has a range of guidance and resources available to all businesses, including content on managing your cashflow and a list of independent advice services.

The Recovery Loan Scheme is managed by the British Business Bank on behalf of, and with the financial backing of, the Secretary of State for Business, Energy & Industrial Strategy. British Business Bank plc is a development bank wholly owned by HM Government. It is not authorised or regulated by the PRA or the FCA. Visit

Whilst all reasonable care has been taken to ensure that the information provided is correct, no liability is accepted by Bank of Scotland for any loss or damage caused to any person relying on any statement or omission. This is for information only and should not be relied upon as offering advice for any set of circumstance. Specific advice should always be sought in each instance.