Following the announcement that England is to enter a second national lockdown with effect from Thursday 5 November, the Prime Minister confirmed that the Job Retention Scheme – widely known as the Furlough Scheme – will remain in place until December.
This is a return to the original scheme where employees who are placed on furlough will receive 80% of their current salary for the hours not worked, up to a maximum of £2,500.
Employers of all sizes will be eligible and can either bring furloughed employees back to work on a part time basis – flexible furloughing – or furlough them full-time, only paying the National Insurance and employer pensions contributions only for the hours the employee does not work – around 5% of total employment costs.
To be eligible employees must be on the PAYE payroll as at 23.59 on Friday 30 October 2020 and can be on any type of contract. Employers will continue to pay employees for the hours worked in the normal way and will be responsible for paying the tax and National Insurance contributions on these amounts.
Job Support Scheme
To avoid having two schemes running simultaneously, the Job Support Scheme (JSS) has been delayed, with the extended furlough scheme continuing ‘until December’ (see above). As at 1 November, the precise furlough end date had not been confirmed.
Where businesses are forced to close in England as a result of the second lockdown measures, they will be eligible to receive business grants of up to £3,000 per month under the Local Restrictions Support Grant.
The amount of grant will depend on the rateable value as follows:
- Properties with a rateable value of:
- £15,000 or less will be eligible for grants of £1,334 per month
- £15,000 and £51,000 will be eligible for grants of £2,000 per month
- £51,000 or more will be eligible for grants of £3000 per month
Devolved administrations will receive monies to use to establish similar schemes.
Further information can be found here. Additional guidance will follow.