Government Updates: Coronavirus Job Retention Scheme, Job Support Scheme, Job Retention Bonus, and paying back claims made in error

Coronavirus Job Retention Scheme

As the nation once again adjusts to a second national lockdown, the Chancellor, Rishi Sunak, has announced a five-month extension of the coronavirus job retention scheme (CJRS) from 31 October to 31 March.

The CJRS more commonly known as the furlough scheme required employers to contribute from 1 August 2020. From 1 October onwards, the maximum government contribution was 60 percent of hours not worked, up to a maximum of £1,875.

Employers had to top up this contribution to pay employees a total of at least 80 percent of the hours not worked.

The current extension, in force from 1 November 2020, will see the government contributing the full 80 percent up to a maximum of £2,500. Employers are only required to pay National Insurance and pension contributions.

The scheme is flexible, allowing employers to use it for part-time workers,  those on a shift pattern, or for varying hours as needed.

It is not necessary for the employer or employee to have made a previous claim under the CJRS. Claims can be made for any employees who were on the company payroll as at 30 October 2020.

If an employee was made redundant or stopped working for the employer after 23 September 2020, they can be re-employed and a claim made under the scheme

Employees can be furloughed if they are shielding or staying home with a family member who is shielding where this is in line with public health guidance.

Claims can be made from 8 am on 11 November. Any claim for November must be made to HM Revenue & Customs no later than 14 December 2020, with claims for subsequent months to be made by the 14th day of the following month.

More information about calculating the amount that can be claimed is available on the government web page Calculate how much you can claim using the Coronavirus Job Retention Scheme.

The scheme will be reviewed in January 2021. If economic circumstances have improved, the government may make the decision to ask employers to contribute towards the payment for hours not worked.

Job Support Scheme and Job Retention Bonus

Both the Job Support Scheme and the Job Retention Bonus have been put on hold for the time being. It is still intended to implement a retention incentive at some stage, when appropriate.

If you have claimed too much in error

If you find you have claimed too much by mistake it should be repaid within 90 days of receipt or within 90 days of any change in circumstances which made you ineligible to make the claim.

Failure to repay within this time frame may result in interest and penalties being due.

More information is available on the government web page Pay Coronavirus Job Retention Scheme grants back.

Contact us

At Tayntons, we have wide experience in all aspects of employment law. If you would like to speak to one of our expert solicitors, email us at info@tayntons.co.uk, call us on 0800 158 4147, or request a callback and a member of our team will be in touch promptly.


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