The Coronavirus Job Retention Scheme (CJRS) or Furlough Scheme ends on the 31st October 2020. The scheme will be replaced by the Job Support Scheme and the Job Support Scheme Expansion.
For every eligible employee you furloughed and claimed for through the Coronavirus Job Retention Scheme (CJRS) and kept continuously employed until at least the 31st January 2021, you will be able to claim a one-off payment of £1,000. You do not have to pay this money to your employee.
To be eligible, employees must earn at least £1,560 between the 6th November 2020 and 5th February 2021 and have received earnings in the November, December, and January tax months. Employees must also not be serving a contractual or statutory notice period for you on 31st January 2021.
Once you have submitted PAYE information for the period up to the 5th February 2021, you will be able to claim the bonus from the 15th February until the 31st March. HMRC will let you know how you can make a claim when further guidance is published by the end of January.
You can still claim the Job Retention Bonus if you make a claim for the same employees through the Job Support Scheme, as long as you meet the eligibility criteria for both.
Further information and examples can be found here.
If you intend to claim the Job Retention Bonus, you must:
- keep your PAYE submissions up-to-date and on time, with Real Time Information (RTI) reporting for all employees, including reporting the leaving date for any employees that stop working for you in the month they leave or the next Full Payment Submission
- use the irregular payment pattern indicator in RTI for any employees not paid regularly
- provide any employee data for past CJRS claims that HMRC has requested
- make sure all your CJRS claims have been accurately submitted and you have told HMRC about any changes needed (for example if you have received too much or too little)
The Government recently announced the Job Support Scheme (JSS) to protect jobs where businesses remain open but are facing lower demand over the winter months, due to COVID-19.
Under JSS, if your employees are working fewer than normal hours due to decreased demand, the Government will contribute towards their wages. You will continue to pay the wages for the hours your staff work. Employees must work at least 33% of their usual hours. For the hours not worked, you and the Government will each pay a third of their usual wages (the Government contribution is capped at £697.92 per month). For the Job Support Scheme factsheet click here
On the 9th of October, the Government announced an expansion of the JSS, to provide temporary support to businesses whose premises have been legally required to close as a direct result of coronavirus restrictions.
Under this expansion, affected businesses will receive grants towards the wages of employees who have been instructed to and cease work. This will cover businesses that, as a result of restrictions set by one or more of the four Governments of the UK, are legally required to close their premises, or to provide delivery and collection services only from their premises.
The Government will pay two thirds of employees’ usual wages, up to a maximum of £2,100 per month. You will not be required to contribute towards wages but do need to cover employer National Insurance and pension contributions.
You can apply for the JSS including the new expansion even if you have not previously used the Coronavirus Job Retention Scheme (CJRS). JSS is available from the 1st of November for six months, with payment of grants in arrears from early December. The scheme will be reviewed in January.
Further information will be published by HMRC in the coming weeks.
To help you prepare your JSS claim accurately, we anticipate that it will be important for you to identify the pay element(s) used to make Job Support Scheme payments.
Currently we have no guidance from HMRC to explain the claim calculation process, or what information will be required to make a JSS claim. We intend to release an update to KashFlow Payroll during the first week in November which will allow you to create separate pay elements for JSS and/or JSS Expansion payments so that they will be identifiable once we have further instructions from HMRC.