Coronavirus Job Retention Scheme Extension

The Coronavirus Job Retention Scheme (CJRS) – better known as the furlough scheme has been extended for another month until December.

Under the terms of the extension, the government has increased the payment to 80% of a worker’s salary capped at £2,500 per month, the employer will have to meet the cost of National Insurance payments and pension contributions. This makes the scheme operate on the same terms as it did in August.

The extended Job Retention Scheme will operate as the previous scheme did, with businesses being paid upfront to cover wages costs. There will be a short period where the Government needs to change the legal terms of the scheme and update the system and businesses will be paid in arrears for that period.

As under the current CJRS, flexible furloughing will be allowed in addition to full-time furloughing.

Further details, including how to claim this extended support through an updated claims service, will be provided shortly.

Who is eligible?

Employers

  • All employers with a UK bank account and UK PAYE schemes can claim the grant. Neither the employer nor the employee needs to have previously used the CJRS.

Employees

  • To be eligible to be claimed for under this extension, employees must be on an employer’s PAYE payroll by 23:59 30th October 2020. This means a Real Time Information (RTI) submission notifying payment for that employee to HMRC must have been made on or before 30th October 2020.
  • Employees can be on any type of contract. Employers will be able to agree any working arrangements with employees.
  • Employers can claim the grant for the hours their employees are not working, calculated by reference to their usual hours worked in a claim period. Such calculations will broadly follow the same methodology as currently under the CJRS.
  • When claiming the CJRS grant for furloughed hours, employers will need to report and claim for a minimum period of 7 consecutive calendar days.
  • Employers will need to report hours worked and the usual hours an employee would be expected to work in a claim period.
  • For worked hours, employees will be paid by their employer subject to their employment contract and employers will be responsible for paying tax and NICs.

The Job Support Scheme (JSS) will not be introduced until after the Coronavirus Job Retention Scheme ends.

The Government will confirm shortly when claims can first be made in respect of employee wage costs during November.  For more information on the scheme visit the Gov.uk website

Business Grants

Businesses required to close in England due to local or national restrictions will be eligible for the following:

  • For properties with a rateable value of £15k or under, grants to be £1,334 per month, or £667 per two weeks
  • For properties with a rateable value of between £15k-£51k grants to be £2,000 per month, or £1,000 per two weeks
  • For properties with a rateable value of £51k or over grants to be £3,000 per month, or £1,500 per two weeks

Businesses and Venues

The Government has ordered certain businesses and venues to close, these include:

  • all non-essential retail, including, but not limited to clothing and electronics stores, vehicle showrooms, travel agents, betting shops, auction houses, tailors, car washes, tobacco and vape shops.
  • indoor and outdoor leisure facilities such as bowling alleys, leisure centres and gyms, sports facilities including swimming pools, golf courses and driving ranges, dance studios, stables and riding centres, soft play facilities, climbing walls and climbing centres, archery and shooting ranges, water and theme parks,
  • entertainment venues such as theatres, concert halls, cinemas, museums and galleries, casinos, adult gaming centres and arcades, bingo halls, bowling alleys, concert halls, zoos and other animal attractions, botanical gardens;
  • personal care facilities such as hair, beauty and nail salons, tattoo parlours, spas, massage parlours, body and skin piercing services, non-medical acupuncture, and tanning salons.

Food shops, supermarkets, garden centres and certain other retailers providing essential goods and services can remain open.

Non-essential retail can remain open for delivery to customers and click-and-collect.

Hospitality venues like restaurants, bars and pubs must close, but can still provide takeaway and delivery services. Takeaway of alcohol will not be allowed.

Hotels, hostels and other accommodation should only open for those who have to travel for work purposes.

Some venues will be allowed to remain open for specific exempt activities, like childcare and support groups. Support groups that are essential to deliver in person can continue with up to 15 participants where formally organised to provide mutual aid, therapy or any other form of support.

Going to work

Everyone who can work from home must do so. Where people cannot do so (eg, people who work in critical national infrastructure, construction or manufacturing) they should continue to travel to attend their workplace.

More updates are due to be announced over the next week.  As we know more we will let you know.