COVID-19 UPDATE

03 / 11 / 2020

Extension of Furlough Scheme and postponement of Job Support Scheme

Following the government’s announcement of a second nationwide lockdown (5 November 2020 to 2 December 2020), the Coronavirus Job Retention Scheme (CJRS), which was originally due to close on 31 October 2020, has now been extended at least throughout November 2020. The Job Support Scheme (the planned successor to the CJRS) has been placed on hold for now.

The key points of the extended furlough scheme are:

  • Government grant – the government will pay 80% of an employee’s normal wages (capped at £2,500) for hours not worked.
  • Employer contribution – employers must pay the NICs and pension contributions.
  • Top-up – employers have discretion to top-up the government grant.
  • Flexible furlough – employees can continue to work part-time and receive a furlough grant for their unworked hours.
  • New participants – employees do not need to have been placed on furlough previously to be eligible for the extended furlough scheme. To be eligible, employees must have been on their employer’s PAYE payroll on 30 October 2020, and a Real Time Information (RTI) submission must have been made notifying HMRC of payment to that employee on or before 30 October 2020.
  • Re-hiring – there is currently no guidance to suggest that employers can re-hire staff made redundant prior to 30 October 2020 to benefit from extended furlough.
  • Financial support – businesses in England which have been forced to close their premises may also be able to claim a Local Restrictions Support Grant of up to £3,000 per month if they meet the eligibility criteria here.
  • Employee communications – if you have already sent out letters to your employees asking for their agreement to be placed on the JSS scheme, you should contact them as soon as possible to let them know that the JSS is now on hold and to ask for their agreement (if you do not already have it) to be placed on the extended furlough scheme instead.

For further details, please see the government update here.

If you need advice in relation to the extended furlough scheme, please get in touch with the team.

This information is correct as at 3 November 2020.