From 1 July 2020, the Coronavirus Job Retention Scheme is changing.
Employers will be able to bring previously furloughed employees back to work part time and decide the hours and shift patterns they work to suit the needs of their business. From 1 August, employers will be asked to contribute towards wage costs.
Extension to the Coronavirus Job Retention Scheme and flexible furloughing: This webinar will take you through the changes, flexible furloughing, claim periods and key dates.
If you haven’t managed to join the popular Coronavirus Statutory Sick Pay Rebate Scheme or Self-Employment Income Support Scheme webinars, HMRC have now added more dates.
Coronavirus (COVID-19) Statutory Sick Pay Rebate Scheme: This webinar will take you through the latest on who can claim, who you can claim for, how to make a claim, what you may be entitled to, and more.
Coronavirus (COVID-19) – Self-Employment Income Support Scheme (SEISS): This webinar will take you through the aim of the scheme, who can apply, how much may be claimed, applying for the scheme, what happens after applications are made, and other support available.
This is a reminder that you can start to flexibly furlough eligible employees from 1 July onwards.
From 1 July, you can claim a more flexible grant for any employee you have previously received a CJRS grant for, and who now returns to work on reduced hours. You can also continue to claim for employees who stay fully furloughed.
You can find guidance on eligibility and how to claim for flexibly furloughed employees by searching for ‘Coronavirus Job Retention Scheme’ on GOV.UK.
What You Need To Do Next
- Claim for periods ending on or before 30 June, by 31 July – this is the last date you can make those claims
- Agree the hours and shift patterns that you want employees to work from 1 July
- Pay employees’ wages for the time they’re in work and apply for a job retention scheme grant to cover the remainder of their usual hours for which they are still furloughed
- Claim for further furlough periods as needed – the first time you will be able to make a claim for days in July will be 1 July.
Live webinars offering more support on changes to the scheme and how they impact you are available to book online – go to GOV.UK and search ‘help and support if your business is affected by coronavirus’.
Please don’t call HMRC for more information. All details are on GOV.UK and our webinars.
What To Do If You Have Overclaimed
If this applies to you, then all you need to do is tell HMRC when you next claim so you can pay it back. You will be asked when making your claim whether you need to adjust the amount to take account of a previous error. Your new claim amount will be reduced to reflect this. You do not need to take any other action but should keep a record of this adjustment for six years.
If you have made an error in a previous claim but do not plan to submit further claims, you need to contact HMRC to let them know, so that HMRC can tell you how to repay the money.
Claiming For 100 Or More Employees?
Please use HMRC new template to claim for periods starting on or after 1 July to ensure your claim is processed quickly and successfully.
You can find this template by searching ‘download a template if you’re claiming for 100 or more employees through the Coronavirus Job Retention Scheme’ on GOV.UK.
Paying Employer National Insurance Contributions (NICs) And Pension Contributions
A condition of the CJRS grant is that you pay the related PAYE tax, NICs and pension contributions due on wages. Until 31 July you can continue to claim these for the hours the employee is on furlough. From 1 August employers will no longer be able to claim for NICs and pension contributions.
If you think you may struggle to pay your PAYE tax and/or NICs from August, please contact HMRC as soon as possible, before they start action to recover the unpaid debt. They may be able to give you time to pay.
You can find this guidance by searching for ‘Coronavirus Job Retention Scheme’ on GOV.UK.
What The New Online Guidance Covers
The guidance includes:
- changes to the scheme and key dates that you need to be aware of
- how you can claim if you bring previously furloughed employees back to work part-time from 1 July (known as flexible furloughing) and how many employees you can claim for in any one claim
- how to claim, and the information you’ll need to do so
- how to work out how much you can claim, including an online calculator to help you
- more information on amending your claim.
Webinars offering more support on changes to the scheme and how they impact you are now available to book online – go to GOV.UK and search ‘help and support if your business is affected by coronavirus’.
What You Need To Do Now
- read the guidance to see how changes to the scheme impact you, using the calculator to understand how much you’ll be able to claim
- book a webinar via GOV.UK if you’d like more support
- consider which employees you want to keep on full-time furlough and which employees will come back to work – on what hours – to agree arrangements with them as needed for your business.
What You Need To Do From July
- start your flexible furloughing of employees from 1 July You can decide the hours and shift patterns they work to suit the needs of your business – you’ll pay their wages for the time they’re in work and can apply for a job retention scheme grant to cover any of their usual hours they are still furloughed for. You can still keep employees on full furlough if you need to
- claim for periods ending on or before 30 June, by 31 July – this is the last date you can make those claims
- claim for further furlough periods as needed – the first time you will be able to make a claim for days in July will be 1 July.
Self-Employment Income Support Scheme
HMRC have also updated their guidance on the Self-Employment Income Support Scheme, with further details on terms for claiming a second grant in August. You can find this guidance by searching for ‘Self-Employment Income Support Scheme’ on GOV.UK.
Important Dates – What You Need To Know Now
- The scheme will close to anyone who hasn’t been furloughed for 3 weeks by 30 June, so you will only be able to claim for employees after that if they have been furloughed for a full three-week period at any time before the end of June.
- So, if you intend to furlough an employee who hasn’t been furloughed before, you will need to agree that with them and start their period of furlough on or before 10 June – this is the last day on which someone who has never been furloughed before can start a period of furlough and qualify for the scheme –this ensures the minimum three-week period is complete by 30 June.
- You will then have until 31 Julyto make a claim for any periods of furlough up until 30 June – this applies to both employees furloughed for the first time and those you have previously furloughed and claimed for.
The Future Of The Scheme
- The rules of the scheme are changing from 1 July.
- On 12 June, HMRC will publish full guidance on all the scheme changes on GOV.UK – search for ‘Coronavirus Job Retention Scheme’ to find this – webinars offering more support on the changes will also be available to book online from 12 June
- From 1 July, you’ll have the flexibility to bring previously furloughed employees back to work part time, you can decide the hours and shift patterns they work to suit the needs of your business – you’ll pay their wages for the time they’re in work and can apply for a scheme grant to cover any of their normal hours they are still furloughed for.
- Also, for periods starting on or after the 1 July, the maximum number of employees you can claim for in any period cannot be higher than the maximum number you have claimed for in a previous period. For example, if your highest single claim for periods up to 30 June was for 100 people, you can’t claim for more than this number in later periods.
- From 1 August, you will need to contribute towards the wage costs of your furloughed employees until the scheme ends on 31 October.
Making Changes To Your Claims If You Have Over-Claimed
If you’ve made an error in a CJRS claim that means you received too much money, you must pay this back to HMRC.
They’ve updated the application system so you can tell them if you have over-claimed in a previous claim – when you apply you’ll be asked if you need to reduce the amount to take account of a previous error. Your new claim amount will be reduced to reflect this. You should then keep a record of this adjustment for six years.
If you have made an error in a CJRS claim and do not plan to submit further claims, HMRC are working on a process that will allow you to let them know about your error and pay back any amounts that you have over-claimed.
Coronavirus Statutory Sick Pay Rebate Scheme: Providing an overview of the scheme, this webinar looks at who can claim, when to start paying SSP, employees you can claim for, making a claim, keeping records, and more.
Coronavirus Job Retention Scheme – How to make a claim: This guides you through making a claim, including the essential information you need, what to do before you make your claim, calculating and processing your claim.
Coronavirus (COVID-19) – Self-Employment Income Support Scheme (SEISS): This webinar covers the aim of the scheme, who can apply, how much may be claimed, applying for the scheme, what happens after applications are made, and other support available.
Entitlement to SSP has been extended to people who have been told to isolate under the new Test and Trace system. So if an employee is traced under the new system and has to isolate for 14 days because they’ve been in contact with someone who has coronavirus, they are entitled to SSP.
This will be extended for those people whose trade continues to be, or is newly, adversely affected by COVID-19 (coronavirus).
Eligible self-employed people will be able to claim a second and final SEISS grant in August; this will be a taxable grant worth 70% of their average monthly trading profits for three months, paid out in a single instalment and capped at £6,570 in total.
The eligibility criteria for the second grant will be the same as for the first grant.
People do not need to have claimed the first grant to claim the second grant: for example, their business may have been adversely affected by COVID-19 (coronavirus) more recently.
Claims for the first SEISS grant, which opened on 13 May, must be made no later than 13 July.
Eligible self-employed people must make a claim before that date to receive the first SEISS grant (a taxable grant of 80% of their average monthly trading profits, paid out in a single instalment covering 3 months’ worth of profits, and capped at £7,500 in total).
It’s really important to note that as with the first SEISS grant, the eligible individual must make the claim themselves. If you attempt to make a claim on behalf of your client, this will trigger a fraud alert and will result in significant delays to payment. However, you can help to prepare your clients by ensuring they have the relevant information ready. The claims process is simple: we will calculate the amount of self-employment support individuals will receive, they don’t need to do this themselves.
More information about the second SEISS grant will be available on GOV.UK on 12 June.
The Chancellor has announced three changes to the job retention scheme:
- From 1 July 2020, the scheme will be made more flexible to enable employers to bring previously furloughed employees back part time and still receive a grant for the time when they are not working.
- From 1 August 2020, employers will have to start contributing to the wage costs of paying their furloughed staff and this employer contribution will gradually increase in September and October.
- The scheme will close to new entrants from 30 June.
1. Part-Time Furloughing
From 1 July 2020, businesses using the scheme will have the flexibility to bring previously furloughed employees back to work part time – with the government continuing to pay 80% of wages for any of their normal hours they do not work up until the end of August.
Employers will decide the hours and shift patterns their employees will work on their return, and will be responsible for paying their wages in full while working. This means that employees can work as much or as little as the business needs, with no minimum time that they can furlough staff for.
Any working hours arrangement agreed between a business and their employee must cover at least one week and be confirmed to the employee in writing.
When claiming the CJRS grant for furloughed hours, you will need to report and claim for a minimum period of a week.
You can choose to make claims for longer periods such as on monthly or two weekly cycles if preferred.
Employers will be required to submit data on the usual hours an employee would be expected to work in a claim period and actual hours worked.
If employees are unable to return to work, or employers do not have work for them to do, they can remain on furlough and the employer can continue to claim the grant for their full hours under the existing rules.
2. Employer Contributions
From August, the government grant provided through the job retention scheme will be slowly tapered.
- in June and July, the government will pay 80% of wages up to a cap of £2,500 as well as employer National Insurance (ER NICs) and pension contributions for the hours the employee doesn’t work – employers will have to pay employees for the hours they work
- in August, the government will continue to pay 80% of wages up to a cap of £2,500 but employers will pay ER NICs and pension contributions – for the average claim, this represents 5% of the gross employment costs that they would have incurred if the employee had not been furloughed
- in September, the government will pay 70% of wages up to a cap of £2,187.50 for the hours the employee does not work – employers will pay ER NICs, pension contributions and 10% of wages to make up 80% of the total up to a cap of £2,500
- in October, the government will pay 60% of wages up to a cap of £1,875 for the hours the employee does not work – employers will pay ER NICs, pension contributions and 20% of wages to make up 80% of the total up to a cap of £2,500
- the cap on the furlough grant will be proportional to the hours not worked.
Many smaller employers have some or all of their employer NIC bills covered by the Employment Allowance so will not be significantly impacted by that part of the tapering of the government contribution.
Around a quarter of CJRS monthly claims relate to wages that are below the threshold where employer NICs and auto enrolment contributions are due, and so no employer contribution will be required for these furloughed employees in August.
3. Important Dates
It’s important to note that the scheme will close to new entrants from 30 June.
From this point onwards, employers will only be able to furlough employees that they have furloughed for a full three-week period prior to 30 June.
This means that the final date by which an employer can furlough an employee for the first time will be 10 June for the current three-week furlough period to be completed by 30 June.
Employers will have until 31 July to make any claims in respect of the period to 30 June.