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Coronavirus Job Retention Scheme (Furlough) Update – October 2020

Coronavirus Job Retention Scheme (Furlough) Update – October 2020

30 September 2020

From today (1 October 2020), the Coronavirus Job Retention Scheme (CJRS) will pay 60% of usual wages up to a cap of £1,875 per month for the hours furloughed employees do not work.

You must still pay your employee at least 80% of their usual wages for the hours they don’t work, so you will need to fund the difference between this and the CJRS grant yourself.

The caps are proportional to the hours not worked. For example, if your employee is furloughed for half their usual hours in October, you are entitled to claim 60% of their usual wages for the hours they do not work, up to £937.50 (half of £1,875 cap).

The Coronavirus Job Retention Scheme will end on 31 October 2020.

What you need to do from 1 October

Continue to pay your furloughed employees at least 80% of their usual wages for the hours they do not work, up to a cap of £2,500 per month.

You’ll also continue to pay your furloughed employees’ National Insurance and pension contributions from your own funds.

For further information about changes to the scheme, including help with calculating your claim, click here.

What you need to do from 1 November - Job Support Scheme

A new Job Support Scheme will be introduced from November to replace CJRS. The scheme aims to protect viable jobs where businesses are facing lower demand over the winter months due to coronavirus (COVID-19).

Under the scheme, which will run for six months, the government will contribute towards the wages of employees who are working fewer than normal hours due to decreased demand. However, businesses will not be able to issue redundancy notices to employees on the scheme.

You will continue to pay the wages for the hours your staff work. For the hours not worked, you and the government will each pay one third of their usual wages (capped at £697.92 per month). You will need to meet your share of the pay for unworked hours and all your National Insurance contributions and statutory pension contributions from your own funds. This means that employees will receive at least two thirds of their usual wages for the hours not worked.

To be eligible, employees must:

  • Be registered on your PAYE payroll on or before 23 September 2020. This means a Real Time Information (RTI) submission notifying payment in respect of that employee must have been made to HMRC on or before 23 September 2020
  • Work at least 33% of their usual hours. The government will consider whether to increase this minimum hour threshold after the first three months of the scheme.

The Job Support Scheme will be open to employers across the UK, even if you have not previously applied under the Coronavirus Job Retention Scheme (CJRS).
The Job Support Scheme will start from 1 November and you will be able to claim in December. Grants will be paid on a monthly basis. The scheme will operate in addition to the Job Retention Bonus, so employers can claim for both schemes.

For information on what is covered by the grant, which employers and employees are eligible, and how to claim, download the Job Support Scheme factsheet here.

Webinar Support

HMRC are continuing to hold live webinars offering more support on changes to the CJRS, so their phone lines can remain open for those who need it most. Click here to register for an upcoming webinar.

Protect yourself from scams

Stay vigilant about scams which mimic government messages as a way of appearing authentic and unthreatening. Click here for information on how to recognise genuine HMRC contacts.

You can forward suspicious emails claiming to be from HMRC to phishing@hmrc.gov.uk and texts to 60599. Please also let the IGA know if you have been targeted by a scam so we can make other members aware.

If you need further assistance with any aspect of furlough, the IGA Member Helpline team is here to help. Call the direct member helpline or 0845 305 4230, or email enquiries@rmif.co.uk.