COVID-19 Update: Coronavirus Job Retention Scheme: Extension
The Chancellor has announced that employees across the UK will benefit from the Coronavirus Job Retention Scheme (CJRS) being extended once again until Spring 2021. This happens just days following the announcement set out in our previous article that the CJRS would continue from 1 November until 2 December 2020.
- The CJRS will be extended until the end of March. At current rates this entitles employees to 80% of their current salary for hours not worked, up to £2,500 a month, with the employers paying the national Insurance contributions and pension contributions for those hours, as before.
- The Chancellor stated that this extension of the CJRS would be reviewed again in January 2021 to determine whether the economy was strong enough to ask for employers to increase % contributions, as they did in May 2020.
- Full guidance is due to be published next week, on 10 November 2020. However, the published HMRC Policy Paper states that:
- employers can claim even if they, or the relevant employees, had not previously used the CJRS.
- the furlough will continue to be flexible, i.e. employees can continue to do some work.
- employees who have previously been furloughed continue to have their reference pay and hours based on the existing furlough calculations (as under the old scheme). Employees who have not previously been furloughed will have a different pay/hours reference period. Full guidance will be provided on 10 November, but broadly the pay is based on 80% of the wages payable in the last pay period ending on or before 30 October 2020 (for those on fixed wages), or 80% of the average payable between the start date of their employment or 6 April 2020 (whichever is later) and the day before their CJRS extension furlough period begins (for those on variable wages).
- employees can be furloughed if they are shielding in line with public health guidance (or need to stay at home with someone who is shielding).
- employees who were employed and on the payroll on 23 September 2020 and who were made redundant or stopped working for their employer after that date can be re-employed and claimed for under the CJRS.
- the Job Support Scheme and the Job Retention Bonus have been put on hold (for now).
If you require any further advice on this or any other employment matter, then please do not hesitate to contact Jonathan Bruck.
This article is provided for general information purposes only. Although every effort has been made to ensure that the information in this article is accurate, it does not constitute legal advice and should not be relied on as such. Should you require legal advice, please do not hesitate to contact us.