There have been several announcements made in the last week, these are detailed below, along with links to the more detailed government guidance.
The scheme was originally announced to run until the 31 May, however, the end date has now been extended at least until the end of June.
Claims can be Made from Monday 20 April
HMRC have finished testing the new online portal and it goes live on Monday. This means that employers and their agents can make their first claims. The grant will be paid into the employers’ bank accounts six days after submission of the claim.
The claim must be made through the portal and the payment will only be made directly into a UK bank account.
A step by Step guide to making a claim has been published by the government and can be accessed here https://assets.publishing.service.gov.uk/government/uploads/system/uploads/attachment_data/file/880099/Coronavirus_Job_Retention_Scheme_step_by_step_guide_for_employers.pdf
Further Guidance on How to work out the amount of your Claim
The government has issued further guidance on how to work out your claim, it can be accessed from the following link https://www.gov.uk/guidance/work-out-80-of-your-employees-wages-to-claim-through-the-coronavirus-job-retention-scheme
Some of the key points covered include:
- An online calculator will be available from Monday.
- The amount you should use when calculating 80% of your employees’ wages is regular payments you are obliged to make, including regular wages you pay to employees, non-discretionary overtime, non-discretionary fees, non-discretionary commission payments and piece rate payments; and
- You cannot include the following when calculating wages: payments made at the discretion of the employer or a client - where the employer or client was under no contractual obligation to pay (i.e. tips, discretionary bonuses, discretionary commission payments), non-cash payments and non-monetary benefits like benefits in kind (such as a company car) and salary sacrifice schemes (including pension contributions) that reduce an employees’ taxable pay.
- Employees can take holiday whilst on furlough.
- Employers will be obliged to pay the additional 20% over the grant.
- If an employee usually works bank holidays then the employer can agree that this is included in the grant payment. If the employee usually takes the bank holiday as leave then the employer would either have to top up their pay to 100% of usual pay, or give the employee a day of holiday in lieu.
Other Practical Issues
- You cannot make more than one claim during a claim period - you should make your claim shortly before or during running payroll.
- You must claim for all employees in each period at one time.
- You cannot make changes to your claim.
Our article is designed only to provide an outline and does not cover every eventuality, if you are planning to make the claim on your own behalf, the n please follow the detailed guidelines, as issued by the government https://www.gov.uk/guidance/work-out-80-of-your-employees-wages-to-claim-through-the-coronavirus-job-retention-scheme
It is our intention to submit claims where we normally complete your payroll submissions, we are also happy to help clients make their own submissions.