We’re living in unprecedented times, with the Coronavirus crisis causing uncertainty for business owners and employees alike. Our offices may be temporarily closed, but we are still here to provide advice and support to our clients where possible, answering the questions you need to know.

 

Q: What does the job retention scheme mean for my firm and my staff?

 

A:

 

Until the last month, the term ‘furloughed’ was widely unknown. Now, it’s regularly trending on Twitter and mentioned in almost every news bulletin.

 

The term relates to employees on a temporary leave of absence and was introduced as part of the Coronavirus Job Retention Scheme announced by Chancellor Rishi Sunak. The scheme is designed to support employers whose operations have been severely affected by the Covid-19 pandemic.

 

Employers can use a portal (due to be completed by the end of April 2020) to claim for 80% of usual monthly wage costs for furloughed employees, up to £2,500 a month. The associated employer national insurance contributions and minimum employer contributions are also covered within this policy.

 

There’s no need to rush if you believe you may need to furlough staff – employers can use this scheme anytime during the ongoing Coronavirus crisis, so it’s wise to bide your time and think logically about your options as an employer.

 

Businesses, charities, recruitment agencies and public authorities are all eligible to apply, providing they created and began a PAYE payroll scheme on or before 28 February 2020 and have a UK bank account.

 

For more information head to https://www.gov.uk/guidance/claim-for-wage-costs-through-the-coronavirus-job-retention-scheme.