Friday 5 March 2021
CJRS Furlough Scheme Extended to 30 September
With the UK having been adversely affected by the Coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic, Chancellor Rishi Sunak presented the 2021 Budget against a backdrop of ongoing economic hardship. We’ve summarised the key points relating to the Coronavirus Job Retention Scheme.
The current version of the furlough scheme that started on 1 November 2020 was scheduled to end on 30 April 2021. In order to avoid a “cliff-edge” with resulting widespread redundancies the chancellor has announced a further extension of the scheme and also a phased reduction in support to employers. The CJRS furlough grant for May and June will remain at 80% of the employees’ usual pay for hours not working but it will then be limited to 70% for July and then 60% for August and September.
This phased reduction will operate in a similar way as in September and October 2020 with the employer being required to contribute the remaining 10% and then 20% of an employee’s regular pay so that they continue to receive 80% pay for furloughed hours.
In addition to the 10% and 20% contributions employers will continue to be responsible for paying employers national insurance and pension contributions on the full amount being paid to employees.
CJRS eligibility from May
For periods from 1 May 2021 onwards, you will be able to claim for eligible employees who were employed by you and on your PAYE payroll on 2 March 2021. This means you must have made a PAYE Real Time Information (RTI) submission to HMRC between 20 March 2020 and 2 March 2021, notifying us of earnings for that employee.
You and your employees do not need to have benefitted from the scheme before to make a claim, as long as you meet the eligibility criteria.
For more information on the extension to the scheme and the support available please click here.
Contact us if you need assistance with your CJRS furlough claims.
Our summary of the Chancellor’s 2021 Budget is now available below.Budget Summary
Tuesday 23 February 2021
You can now make February CJRS claims
You can now submit your claims for periods in February. These must be made by Monday 15 March 2021.
You can claim before, during or after you process your payroll. If you can, it’s best to make a claim once you’re sure of the exact number of hours your employees will work so you don’t have to amend your claim at a later date.
You can check if you’re eligible and work out how much you can claim using HMRCs CJRS calculator and examples here.
What you need to do now
- If you haven’t submitted your claim for January but believe that you have a reasonable excuse, check if you can apply to make a late claim by clicking here and scrolling down to 'If you have missed the claim deadline'.
- Submit any claims for February no later than Monday 15 March.
- Keep records that support the amount of CJRS grants you claim, in case HMRC needs to check them.
Tuesday 19 January 2021
Coronavirus Job Retention Scheme – latest deadlines
The December furlough claim deadline passed on 14 January 2021. If you have already submitted your claims for December but need to make a change because you didn’t claim enough, you can do this until Thursday 28 January. To find out how to amend your claim click here.
You can now submit your claims for periods in January. These must be made by Monday 15 February 2021.
You can claim before, during or after you process your payroll. If you can, it’s best to make a claim once you’re sure of the exact number of hours your employees will work so you don’t have to amend your claim at a later date.
You and your employees do not need to have benefitted from the scheme before to make a claim. You can check if you’re eligible and work out how much you can claim using HMRCs CJRS calculator and examples here.
What you need to do now
- If you haven’t submitted your claim for December but believe that you have a reasonable excuse, check if you can apply to make a late claim by clicking here and scrolling down to 'If you have missed the claim deadline'.
- Check you claimed the right amount in December by looking at the eligibility criteria and calculating how much you can claim here.
- Submit any claims for January no later than Monday 15 February.
- Keep records that support the amount of CJRS grants you claim, in case HMRC needs to check them.
Making your claim online
To make a CJRS claim, you will need to be registered and have the required access, password or activation code for HMRC online services.
Furlough for caring responsibilities
Employees can ask to be furloughed because they have caring responsibilities resulting from Coronavirus, such as caring for children who are at home as a result of school or childcare closing.
Claiming for more than 100 employees
HMRC have updated their template if you are claiming for 100 or more employees through the CJRS. Complete a template with the details of the employees you are claiming for and upload this when you claim. Please click here for the template.
Publishing information on claims
On 26 January 2021 HMRC will be publishing a list of employer names who have claimed CJRS for periods from December onwards, on GOV.UK.
From February, HMRC will publish the names, an indication of the value of claims and Company Registration Numbers (for those who have one) of employers who make CJRS claims for periods starting on or after 1 December. The published value of the claim will be shown within a banded range – to find a list of these click here and scroll down to Employer claim information that HMRC will make public.
HMRC will not publish details of employers claiming through the scheme if they can show that publicising these would result in a serious risk of violence or intimidation to individuals, or those living with them. To request for your details not to be published, complete the online application form click here and scroll down to Employer claim information that HMRC will make public.
If you need to do this, HMRC will not publish your details until a decision has been made and you have been informed. You'll only need to apply once, as the decision will cover all CJRS claim periods starting from 1 December 2020. You must make the application yourself, and it can’t be made by an agent on your behalf.
Employees will also be able to check if an employer has made a CJRS claim on their behalf through their online Personal Tax Account from February. They can set up a Personal Tax Account here.
Details of CJRS claims will now be published monthly as part of HMRC’s commitment to transparency and to deter fraudulent claims.
Wednesday 6 January 2021
Coronavirus Job Retention Scheme Update
Information about if your employee is unable to work because they have caring responsibilities resulting from Coronavirus (COVID-19) has been updated.
Employees can be furloughed if caring responsibilities arising from Coronavirus (COVID-19) mean they are:
- unable to work (including from home)
- working reduced hours
Examples of caring responsibilities include caring for:
- children who are at home as a result of school or childcare facilities closing
- a vulnerable individual in your household
Claims for furlough days in December 2020 must be made by 14 January 2021.
You can claim before, during or after you process your payroll as long as your claim is submitted by the relevant claim deadline. You cannot submit your claim more than 14 days before your claim period end date.
|Claim for furlough days in||Claim must be submitted by|
|December 2020||14 January 2021|
|January 2021||15 February 2021|
|February 2021||15 March 2021|
|March 2021||14 April 2021|
|April 2021||14 May 2021|
For further information on how to claim for wages through the Coronavirus Job Retention Scheme please click here.
Thursday 17 December 2020
Chancellor extends furlough and loan schemes
- Certainty for millions of jobs and businesses as furlough scheme extended until the end of April 2021.
- Businesses struggling will have now until the end of March to access government generous loan schemes
- Chancellor also confirmed that the Budget will be on the 3 March and set out the next phase of the plan to tackle the virus and protect jobs
The furlough scheme has been extended until the end of April 2021 with the government continuing to contribute 80% towards wages – giving businesses and employees across the UK certainty into the New Year, the Chancellor announced today.
The Chancellor said he would review the employer contribution element of the CJRS in January, but decided to bring this forward to allow businesses to plan ahead for the remainder of the winter and the New Year.
The government will continue to pay 80% of the salary of employees for hours not worked until the end of April. Employers will only be required to pay wages, National Insurance Contributions (NICS) and pensions for hours worked; and NICS and pensions for hours not worked.
The eligibility criteria for the UK-wide scheme will remain unchanged and these changes will continue to apply to all Devolved Administrations.
In a move to ensure firms can access the support they need through continuing economic disruption, Rishi Sunak also confirmed businesses will also be given until the end of March to access the Bounce Back Loan Scheme, Coronavirus Business Interruption Loan Scheme, and the Coronavirus Large Business Interruption Loan Scheme. These had been due to close at the end of January.
These changes come ahead of the Budget, which the Chancellor has confirmed will take place on 3 March 2021. This will deliver the next phase of the plan to tackle the virus and protect jobs, so the extensions to the business loan and furlough schemes enable businesses to plan with certainty and access support in the first few months of the New Year ahead of the further update on wider Covid-19 economic support.
The government has already announced that more support will be available beyond March, through a successor loan scheme. More details of the scheme will be announced in due course, please keep an eye on our Coronavirus Hub for the latest updates.
Tuesday 8 December 2020
Submit your November Coronavirus Job Retention Scheme claims
The upcoming deadline for making Coronavirus Job Retention Scheme (CJRS) claims for November is approaching, detailed below are actions you might need to take. You must submit any November claims, no later than 14 December.
CJRS: what you can claim and when
The UK Government will pay 80% of employees’ usual wages for the hours not worked, up to a cap of £2,500 per month. The terms of the scheme will be reviewed in January.
There are now monthly deadlines for claims. Claims must be submitted within 14 calendar days after the month they relate to, unless this falls on a weekend in which case the deadline is the next weekday. HMRC will continue to send you reminder emails before the deadline each month.
As we approach the Christmas period your payroll dates may differ this month. Don’t forget you can claim before, during or after you process your payroll as long as your claim is submitted by the deadline.
What you need to do now
- Check if you’re eligible, and work out how much you can claim using the CJRS calculator and examples here.
- Submit any claims for November, no later than 14 December.
- Keep any records that support the amount of CJRS grant you claim, in case HMRC needs to check them.
Frequently asked questions about CJRS
You can find everything you need to know about CJRS on GOV.UK but here are some answers to the most frequently asked questions.
Can I claim CJRS now if I haven’t previously?
You and your employees do not need to have benefited from the scheme before to make a claim. If you’re applying for the first time, you’ll need:
- a Government Gateway (GG) ID and password – if you don’t already have a GG account, you can apply for one on GOV.UK here.
- to be enrolled for PAYE online
- the following information for each furloughed employee you’ll be claiming for:
- National Insurance number
- claim period and amount
- PAYE/employee number.
If you have less than 100 furloughed staff, you’ll need to input this information directly into the system for each employee. If you have more than this, you’ll need to upload a file with this information. The easiest way to ensure your file is in the right format is to use the HMRC template found here.
Where can I get further support?
Thousands of people have joined and benefited from HMRCs live webinars which now offer more support on changes to CJRS, and how they affect you. To book online, click here.
There is also a helpful step-by-step guide on GOV.UK, summarising the latest information on CJRS and the steps you need to take to make a claim.
Can I use CJRS to pay for holiday leave?
Your employees can only be placed on furlough if you cannot maintain your workforce because your business has been affected by Coronavirus, and not just because they are on paid leave. This also applies during any peak holiday periods in late December and early January. If your employee is flexibly furloughed, any time taken as holiday should be counted as furloughed hours rather than working hours.
If a furloughed employee takes holiday, you should pay them their normal rate of pay in line with the Working Time Regulations.
What about notice periods?
For claim periods from 1 December, you cannot claim CJRS grants for any days that your employee is serving a contractual or statutory notice period, including notice of retirement or resignation.
Can I re-employ someone and furlough them?
If your employees were on your payroll on 23 September 2020 (notified to HMRC on an RTI submission on or before 23 September) and were made redundant or stopped working for you afterwards, they can qualify for the scheme if you re-employ them and then place them on furlough.
What if I’ve claimed too much in error?
If you have claimed too much CJRS grant and have not already repaid it, you must notify HMRC and repay the money by the latest of whichever date applies below:
- 90 days from receiving the CJRS money you’re not entitled to
- 90 days from the point circumstances changed so that you were no longer entitled to keep the CJRS grant.
If you do not do this, you may have to pay interest and a penalty as well as repaying the excess CJRS grant.
You can let HMRC know as part of your next online claim without needing to call them. If you claimed too much but do not plan to submit further claims, you can let HMRC know and make a repayment online through their card payment service or by bank transfer, further information can be found here.
What if I haven’t claimed enough?
If you made a mistake in your claim that means you received too little money, you’ll need to amend it within 28 calendar days after the month the claim relates to – unless this falls on a weekend or bank holiday, in which case the deadline is the next weekday. The deadline to amend claims for employees furloughed in November is Tuesday 29 December.
To find out how to amend your claim, click here and scroll to the link “if you have not claimed enough”.
What information on my claim will HMRC publish?
From February, HMRC will publish the names, an indication of the value of claims and Company Registration Numbers (for those who have one) of employers who make CJRS claims for periods from December onwards. The published value of your claim will be shown within a banded range – to find a list of these, click here and scroll to the link “employer claim information that HMRC will make public”.
Details of CJRS claims will then be published monthly as part of HMRC’s commitment to transparency and to deter fraudulent claims.
Your employees will also be able to check if you have made a CJRS claim on their behalf through their online Personal Tax Account from February. To set up a Personal Tax Account click here.
Thursday 19 November 2020
The third CJRS grant and director payrolls
Furloughed directors were often excluded from the original Coronavirus Job Retention Scheme (CJRS) due to annual PAYE schemes.
Many directors of small companies have an annual PAYE scheme, taking funds in year via a current/loan account and then as they near the end of their business year, when the accounts are finalised, repay the loan taking an annual salary and dividends as appropriate.
Eligibility for a CJRS grant under the first two iterations of the scheme required a payment of earnings in the tax year 6 April 2019 to 5 April 2020, reported on an RTI submission made on or before 19 March 2020.
For those with 31 March 2020 year ends they hadn’t reported the annual payment on a full payment submission to HMRC by 19 March 2020. These people were therefore not “on the payroll” on 19 March 2020.
The CJRS grant available from 1 November 2020 includes those who were paid up to 30 October 2020, which potentially brings those directors excluded from the first and second versions within its remit.
Working out how much grant they qualify for is far more complex and can vary depending on the timing and amounts of payments received. Directors who qualified for the first two grants may now find themselves excluded.
If you have any questions regarding the above, please speak to your usual H&Co contact.
Monday 16 November 2020
Penalties for not telling HMRC about Coronavirus (COVID-19) support scheme overpayments
If you've received a CJRS grant but were not eligible or you've been overpaid, read the new guidance to find out about penalties you may have to pay if you do not tell HRMC.
Wednesday 11 November 2020
The new Coronavirus Job Retention Scheme (CJRS) guidance is now available on GOV.UK
To check if you’re eligible and to get ready to claim, click here.
You can apply for CJRS online now for periods from 1 November. You will need to submit any claims for November by 14 December.
What’s new in the support available
- CJRS has been extended to 31 March 2021 for all parts of the UK. From 1 November, the UK Government will pay 80% of employees’ usual wages for the hours not worked, up to a cap of £2,500 per month. This will be reviewed in January.
- You and your employees do not need to have benefited from the scheme before to claim for periods from 1 November.
- HMRC intends to publish details of employers who use the scheme for claim periods from December, and employees will be able to find out if their employer has claimed for them under the scheme.
- There are now monthly deadlines for claims. Claims for periods starting on/after 1 November must be submitted within 14 calendar days after the month they relate to, unless this falls on a weekend in which case the deadline is the next weekday.
- The Job Retention Bonus will no longer be paid in February 2021 and an alternative retention incentive will be put in place at the appropriate time.
- The launch of the Job Support Scheme has also been postponed.
What you need to do now
Submit any claims for periods up to 31 October on or before 30 November. Claims for periods up to 31 October will not be accepted after 30 November.
What you need to do for your claims – for periods from 1 November
- Read the new guidance to check if you and your employees are eligible.
- Agree working hours with any employees you wish to furlough for November and agree any changes to their employment contract.
- Work out how much you can claim for your employees using the CJRS calculator and examples.
- Submit any claims for periods from 1 November no later than 14 December.
You will need to keep any records that support the amount of CJRS grant you claim, in case HMRC needs to check them. You can view, print or download copies of your previously submitted claims by logging onto your CJRS service on GOV.UK.
Thousands of people have viewed, and benefited from, HMRCs live webinars which now offer more support on changes to CJRS, and how they affect you.
Thursday 5 November 2020
Government extends Coronavirus Job Retention Scheme to March
Workers across the United Kingdom will benefit from increased support with a five-month extension of the furlough scheme into Spring 2021, the Chancellor announced today, 5 November. The Coronavirus Job Retention Scheme (CJRS) will now run until the end of March, for claim periods running to January 2021 employees will receive 80% of their current salary for hours not worked.
The furlough scheme was initially extended until 2 December. But the government is now going further so that support can be put in place for long enough to help businesses recover and get back on their feet – as well as giving them the certainty they need in coming months. Evidence from the first lockdown showed that the economic effects are much longer lasting for businesses than the duration of restrictions.
Eligible employees will receive 80% of their usual salary for hours not worked, up to a maximum of £2,500 per month.
- Employer flexibility: Businesses will have flexibility to use the scheme for employees for any amount of time and shift pattern, including furloughing them full-time.
- Employer contribution: There will be NO employer contribution to wages for hours not worked. Employers will only be asked to cover National Insurance and Employer pension contributions for hours not worked. For an average claim, this accounts for just 5% of total employment costs or £70 per employee per month. HMRC will review the policy in January to decide whether economic circumstances are improving enough to ask employers to contribute more.
- Payment: The extended CJRS will operate as the previous Scheme did, with businesses being able to claim either shortly before, during or after running payroll. Claims can be made from 8am Wednesday 11 November. Claims made for November must be submitted to HMRC by no-later than 14 December 2020. Claims relating to each subsequent month should be submitted by day 14 of the following month, to ensure prompt claims following the end of the month which is the subject of the claim.
- Employee eligibility: Neither the employer nor the employee needs to have previously claimed or have been claimed for under CJRS to make a claim under the extended CJRS (if other eligibility criteria are met). An employer can claim for employees who were employed and on their PAYE payroll on 30 October 2020. The employer must have made a PAYE Real Time Information (RTI) submission to HMRC between 20 March 2020 and 30 October 2020, notifying a payment of earnings for that employee.
- Employees that are re-employed: Employees that were employed and on the payroll on 23 September 2020 (the day before the Job Support Scheme announcement) who were made redundant or stopped working afterwards can be re-employed and claimed for. The employer must have made an RTI submission to HMRC from 20 March 2020 to 23 September 2020, notifying a payment of earnings for those employees.
Full guidance will be published on Tuesday 10 November.
The Job Support Scheme is postponed.
Job Retention Bonus (JRB)
The Job Retention Bonus will not be paid in February and HMRC will redeploy a retention incentive at the appropriate time. The purpose of the JRB was to encourage employers to keep people in work until the end of January. However, as the CJRS is being extended to the end of March, the policy intent of the JRB falls away.
Tuesday 3 November 2020
Update on Government financial supports
The Coronavirus Job Retention Scheme (CJRS)
On 22 October, the Chancellor announced that the CJRS “furlough” scheme would end on 31 October 2020 to be replaced by a new Job Support Scheme (JSS). However, on 31 October 2020 when the Prime Minister announced a month long lockdown for England he announced that the CJRS furlough scheme would be extended until December.
The Grant will ensure employees receive 80% of their current salary for hours not worked, up to a maximum of £2,500.
Businesses will have flexibility to bring furloughed employees back to work on a part time basis or furlough them full-time, employers will be asked to cover National Insurance and employer pension contributions.
Employers are still able to choose to top up employee wages above the scheme grant at their own expense if they wish.
The Government will confirm shortly when claims can first be made in respect of employee wage costs during November, but there will be no gap in eligibility for support between the previously announced end-date of CJRS and this extension.
The Job Support Scheme (JSS), which was scheduled to come in on Sunday 1st November, has been postponed until the furlough scheme ends.
Details on the CJRS can be found here.
Friday 23 October 2020
Plan for Jobs: Chancellor increases financial support for businesses and workers
On 22 October the government announced it will significantly increase the generosity and reach of its winter support schemes to ensure livelihoods and jobs across the UK continue to be protected in the difficult months to come, supporting jobs and helping to contain the virus.
Job Support Scheme (JSS)
To support individuals and businesses to deal with the challenges created by Coronavirus (COVID-19) during this winter (2020 to 2021), the government is providing additional support to help employers retain their employees through the Job Support Scheme (JSS). This was first announced by the Chancellor on 24 September 2020.
Whilst some businesses have managed to return to levels of demand near to what they experienced before the start of Coronavirus, or have found creative and innovative ways to adapt to the new economic reality, others continue to face challenges.
The Job Support Scheme provides different types of support to these businesses so they can get the right assistance, at the right time, according to their situation. Businesses that are operating but facing decreased demand can get support for wages through JSS Open. Those businesses that are legally required to close their premises as a direct result of Coronavirus restrictions set by one or more of the four governments of the UK can get the support they need through JSS Closed.
Many employers can operate safely but continue to face reduced demand so they may need extra support over the winter to help keep their employees attached to their workforce. For these employers, the Job Support Scheme, through JSS Open, will give employers the option of keeping their employees in a job on shorter hours rather than making them redundant.
Recognising the evolving situation with the pandemic and health restrictions, and the pressures employers are facing this winter, the government has announced that it will increase the scale of support available to employers through JSS Open above what was initially announced, in order to protect more jobs.
The employee will need to work a minimum of 20% of their usual hours and the employer will continue to pay them as normal for the hours worked.
Alongside this, the employee will receive 66.67% of their normal pay for the hours not worked - this will be made up of contributions from the employer and from the government. The employer will pay 5% of reference salary for the hours not worked, up to a maximum of £125 per month, with the discretion to pay more than this if they wish. Employee’s National Insurance contributions and pension contributions will also remain payable by the employer.
The government will pay the remainder of 61.67%, of reference salary for the hours not worked, up to a maximum of £1,541.75 per month. This will ensure employees continue to receive at least 73% of their normal wages, where they earn £3,125 a month or less.
Many employers have been legally required to close their premises as a direct result of Coronavirus restrictions set by one or more of the four governments of the UK. For these businesses, the Job Support Scheme, through JSS Closed, will help them through the period that they are directly affected by these restrictions by supporting the wage costs of employees who have been instructed to cease work in eligible (closed) premises.
Each employee who cannot work due to these restrictions will receive two thirds of their normal pay, paid by their employer and fully funded by the government, to a maximum of £2,083.33 per month, although their employer has discretion to pay more than this if they wish . This will help protect employee incomes, limit unemployment and retain employer-employee matches so that these premises are able to reopen as quickly as possible when circumstances allow.
Employees may also be entitled to additional financial support, including Universal Credit.
Next steps for the Job Support Scheme
The Job Support Scheme will be open from 1 November 2020 and run for 6 months, until 30 April 2021. The government will review the terms of the scheme in January. Employers will be able to claim in arrears from 8 December 2020, with payments made after the claim has been approved. Neither the employer nor the employee needs to have benefitted from the Coronavirus Job Retention Scheme to be eligible for the Job Support Scheme.
Further guidance on the steps that employers need to take to calculate and make a claim to the Job Support Scheme will be published by the end of October.
Monday 12 October 2020
Expansion of Job Support Scheme
On 9th October the government announced an expansion of the JSS, to provide temporary support to businesses whose premises have been legally required to close as a direct result of Coronavirus restrictions.
Under this expansion, affected businesses will receive grants towards the wages of employees who have been instructed to and cease work. This will cover businesses that, as a result of restrictions set by one or more of the four governments of the UK, are legally required to close their premises, or to provide only delivery and collection services from their premises.
The government will pay two thirds of employees’ usual wages, up to a maximum of £2,100 per month. You will not be required to contribute towards wages, but do need to cover employer National Insurance and pension contributions.
You can apply for the JSS including the new expansion even if you haven’t previously used the Coronavirus Job Retention Scheme (CJRS). JSS is available for six months, from 1 November, with payment of grants in arrears from early December. The scheme will be reviewed in January.
In addition to expansion of the JSS, the government is increasing the cash grants to businesses in England shut in local lockdowns to support with fixed costs. These grants will be linked to rateable values, with up to £3,000 per month payable every two weeks, compared to the up to £1,500 every three weeks which was available previously. This could benefit hundreds of thousands of businesses, including restaurants, pubs, nightclubs, bowling alleys and many more.
More details can be found here and further information will be published in the coming weeks.
Friday 9 October 2020
Check if you can claim the Job Retention Bonus from 15 February 2021
Find out if you’re eligible to claim the Job Retention Bonus and what you need to do to claim it. You will be able to claim it between 15 February 2021 and 31 March 2021.
The Job Retention Bonus is a £1,000 one-off taxable payment to the employer, for each eligible employee that you furloughed and kept continuously employed until 31 January 2021. You do not have to pay this money to your employee.
Details of who can claim, the employees you can claim for, the minimum income threshold and how to get ready to claim can be found here.
HMRCs guidance will be updated by the end of January 2021 with how to access the online claim service on GOV.UK.
Thursday 1 October 2020
Changes to the Coronavirus Job Retention Scheme (CJRS) and what this means for you.
From 1 October, HMRC will pay 60% of usual wages up to a cap of £1,875 per month for the hours furloughed employees do not work.
What you need to do from 1 October
Continue to pay your furloughed employees at least 80% of their usual wages for the hours they do not work, up to a cap of £2,500 per month. You will need to fund the difference between this and the CJRS grant yourself.
The caps are proportional to the hours not worked. For example, if your employee is furloughed for half their usual hours in October, you are entitled to claim 60% of their usual wages for the hours they do not work, up to £937.50 (half of £1,875 cap). You must still pay your employee at least 80% of their usual wages for the hours they don’t work, so for someone only working half their usual hours you’d need to pay them up to £1,250 (half of £2,500 cap), funding the remaining portion yourself. For help with calculations click here.
You’ll also continue to pay your furloughed employees’ National Insurance and pension contributions from your own funds.
Make sure your data is right
It’s important that you provide all the data HMRC needs to process your claim. Payment of your grant may be at risk or delayed if you submit a claim that is incomplete or incorrect. HMRC will get in touch if they see any employee data missing from your previous claims.
Claiming for 100 or more employees
The easiest way to provide the data needed is to use HMRCs updated template. To help prevent mistakes, the XLS and XLMS versions of the template now highlight any missing information you need to include in your claim before you submit it. Where information is missing, fields will be red and once the missing information is filled in, the data fields will turn green. You can also now flag if an employee has recently returned from statutory leave, to ensure claims with any new employees are processed correctly.
Claimed too much in error?
It’s important that you continue to check each claim is accurate before submitting it, and we would also recommend checking previous claims to avoid any penalties for claiming too much.
If you have claimed too much CJRS grant and have not repaid it, you must notify HMRC and repay the money by the latest of whichever date applies below:
- 90 days from receiving the CJRS money you’re not entitled to
- 90 days from the point circumstances changed so that you were no longer entitled to keep the CJRS grant
- 20 October 2020, if on or before 22 July you received CJRS money you’re not entitled to, or if your circumstances changed.
If you do not do this, you may have to pay interest and a penalty as well as repaying the excess CJRS grant. Further information on Interest rates for late and early payments can be found here.
How to let HMRC know if you have claimed too much
You can let HMRC know as part of your next online claim without needing to call them – the system will prompt you to add details if you have received too much. If you claimed too much and do not plan to submit further claims, you can let HMRC know and find out how to make a repayment online. Click here for further information.
Friday 25 September 2020
New Job Support Scheme Announced
Chancellor Rishi Sunak announced a new job scheme starting 1 November 2020 to replace the current Job retention (“furlough”) scheme which ends 31 October 2020.
All small and medium-sized businesses are eligible, larger businesses must show their turnover has fallen during the pandemic. Employers can use the new scheme even if they have not previously used the furlough scheme.
The new Government scheme will last for six months to 30 April 2021 and to be eligible employees will need to be working a minimum of 33% of their hours. For the remaining hours not worked the Government and employer will pay one third of wages each.
Employers will continue to pay the wages of staff for the hours they work - but for the hours not worked, the government and the employer will each pay one third of their equivalent salary.
Employees who can only go back to work on shorter time will still be paid two thirds of the hours for those hours they can’t work.
The level of grant will be calculated based on employee’s usual salary, capped at £697.92 per month.
By way of an example an employee working 33% of their hours will receive at least 77% of their pay, 22% paid by the Government and 55% paid by their employer (the “worked” 33% plus 22%).
Further details on the Job Support Scheme (JSS) can be found here.
Wednesday 16 September 2020
HMRC makes changes to calculations for claims
HMRC has updated its guidance on how to perform usual hours calculations where employees come off furlough or flexible furlough partway through a claim period. The change affects claims made from 14 September.
HMRC has made changes for claims made from 14 September 2020. HMRC has added a new subheading:
“Calculating the number of working and furloughed hours for an employee that comes off furlough or flexible furlough partway through a claim period.”
The guidance states:
“If your employee stops being furloughed or flexibly furloughed partway through a claim period, when calculating the number of furloughed hours you can claim for, make sure you:
- only calculate the employee’s usual hours up to the last day of furlough, instead of to the end of the claim period
- do not include any working hours after the last day of furlough.”
HMRC has stated that employers do not need to amend claims made prior to 14 September, but they should use this calculation for any claims from 14 September 2020, for an employee who stops being furloughed or flexibly furloughed partway through a claim period.
If we are making your claims we will make the calculation adjustments for post 14 September claims and if you are doing your own claims please click here for further information.
Friday 11 September 2020
Notify HMRC of over claimed CJRS “furlough” grants within 90 days
The calculation of Coronavirus Job Retention Scheme grants has proven to be complex, particularly as HMRC frequently changed the rules and the method of computation. Consequently, many errors have arisen and need to be corrected.
The latest Finance Act requires employers to notify HMRC within 90 days where it turns out that they were not entitled to receive the furlough grants and there is a penalty for failure to notify them.
HMRC has said that it will be lenient in relation to genuine mistakes, and that penalties will be charged only in cases of deliberate non-compliance.
For more information click here.
Numerous fraudulent CJRS claims identified
HMRCs CJRS fraud reporting portal had received over 2,000 reports of wrongful claims. Examples of such wrongful claims include;
- Claiming furlough payments for staff who are continuing to work
- Furloughing staff but asking them to work “voluntarily” on an unpaid basis.
- Claiming furlough payments for “ghost” employees, and those who left employment before 19 March 2020.
- Not passing on the full amount of furlough pay to staff.
- Failing to account for PAYE tax and NIC in relation to furlough payments
HMRC also have the power to transfer CJRS penalties to the directors of an insolvent company if their company does not pay them. We therefore suggest that employers should check the accuracy and validity of their CRJS claims as a matter of priority, and ensure that any inaccuracies or errors are disclosed to HMRC as quickly as possible. We can of course assist you in checking claims.
Friday 28 August 2020
CJRS – Download a template if you’re claiming for 100 or more employees
HMRC has released an updated excel template in XLS. and similar formats for employers with more than 100 employees. The template can be found here.
Monday 24 August 2020
What you need to do from 1 September
- From 1 September CJRS will pay 70% of usual wages up to a cap of £2,187.50 per month for the hours furloughed employees do not work.
- You will still need to pay your furloughed employees at least 80% of their usual wages for the hours they do not work, up to a cap of £2,500 per month. You will need to fund the difference between this and the CJRS grant yourself.
- The caps are proportional to the hours not worked. For example, if your employee is furloughed for half their usual hours in September, you are entitled to claim 70% of their usual wages for the hours they do not work up to £1,093.75 (50% of the £2,187.50 cap).
- You will continue to have to pay furloughed employees’ National Insurance (NI) and pension contributions from your own funds.
Making sure your data is right
It is important that you provide all the data HMRC need to process your claim. Payment of your grant may be at risk or delayed if you submit a claim that is incomplete or incorrect, so we want to help you get this right.
You can find everything you’ll need to help make your claim here.
Thursday 20 August 2020
Employment Allowance (EA)
The allowance increased to £4,000 from 6 April 2020. HMRCs guidance informs us that it is possible to delay claiming the employment allowance whilst claiming for NICs under the Coronavirus Job Retention Scheme.
Employers who delay their Employment Allowance claim and have unused Employment Allowance available at the end of the tax year can use this to reduce other tax costs. Employers who have received a grant for employer NICs costs through the scheme should deduct the amount of grant they have received from the amount of Employment Allowance they have left before they use it, if not doing so would result in receiving relief for the same cost twice.
Thursday 13 August 2020
Make sure you’re paying the correct workplace pension contributions
The Pensions Regulator (TPR) would like to remind you that your workplace pension duties apply whether your staff are working or are being furloughed as part of the Coronavirus Job Retention Scheme. However, since the beginning of August you have needed to pay the pension contributions and National Insurance contributions for your furloughed staff. You will still be able to claim the lower of 80% of staff wages or £2,500 per month for these staff, reducing to the lower of 70% or £2,187.50 per month in September and the lower of 60% or £1,875 in October, with the scheme closing on 31 October.
Read TPRs guidance to find out more about how to calculate normal pension contributions for furloughed workers who are returning to work part-time, including where there are salary sacrifice arrangements for pensions in place and what to do if your company is struggling to pay contributions. TPR will continue to monitor employer actions to ensure compliance with ongoing duties.
If you offer a defined benefit pension for your staff, you’ll also find the latest information about what to do if you have been temporarily suspending or reducing deficit repair contributions for the scheme via TPRs COVID-19 webpage.
Monday 10 August 2020
CJRS & National Insurance
Reminder of changes to CJRS
From 1 August 2020 CJRS continues to provide grants for furloughed employees but no longer funds employers’ National Insurance (NI) and pension contributions. You now have to make these payments from your own resources for all employees, whether furloughed or not. HMRC guidance has been updated to reflect these changes.
Making sure your data is right
It is important that you provide the data HMRC need to process your claim. Payment of your grant may be at risk or delayed if you submit a claim that is incomplete or incorrect. HMRC may be in touch to request employee data if it’s missing from your previous claims.
National Insurance numbers
You need to provide a National Insurance number (NINO) for all employees as part of your CJRS claim. The only exception is in the very limited circumstances where an employee genuinely does not have a NINO, for example if they are under 16 years old.
If you are claiming for an employee whose NINO you do not currently know, you can check their number by searching GOV.UK for 'Check a National Insurance Number using basic PAYE Tools'.
HMRC can no longer accept claims for fewer than 100 employees by phone where you do not have all employee NINOs unless the employees you are claiming for genuinely do not have these.
Tuesday 4 August 2020
Job Retention Bonus
Click here for more information about the eligibility requirements and what employers need to do now to claim the bonus. Full guidance will be published by the end of September.
Thursday 30 July 2020
What to Do If You Have Claimed Too Much or Not Enough from the Coronavirus Job Retention Scheme
If you have claimed too much or if you want to delete a claim in the online service, you must do this within 72 hours.
If you have made an error in a claim that means you have received too much, you must pay this back to HMRC. You can either:
- tell HMRC as part of your next online claim (your new claim will be reduced, and you’ll need to keep a record of the adjustment for 6 years)
- contact HMRC to pay the money back (you should only do this if you’re not submitting another claim)
If you’ve over claimed a grant and have not repaid it, you must notify HMRC by the latest of either:
- 90 days after the date you received the grant you were not entitled to
- 90 days after the date you received the grant that you were no longer entitled to keep because your circumstances changed
- 20 October 2020
If you do not do this, you may have to pay a penalty. If you do repay any over claimed grant, this will prevent any potential tax liability in respect of the over payment of Coronavirus Job Retention Scheme. HMRC will not be actively looking for innocent errors in their compliance approach.
Find out more about when you may have to pay a penalty and other information, including:
- how HMRC decides how much the penalty will be
- when HMRC will not charge a penalty
- how to appeal against a penalty
For more information click here.
If You Have Not Claimed Enough
If you have made an error that has resulted in receiving too little money, you will still need to ensure you pay your employees the correct amount. You should contact HMRC to amend your claim. As you are increasing the amount of your claim, they may need to conduct additional checks.
After 31 July, you will no longer be able to amend a claim relating to the period up to 30 June to add an employee that should have been included on a claim submitted before that date. You must make sure that any remaining claims still to be made for the period to 30 June include all of your eligible employees. Amendments for any other errors you made that resulted in you not claiming enough will still be permitted after 31 July.
For the full details click here.
Tuesday 14 July 2020
Summer Economic Update
On 8th July, the Chancellor Rishi Sunak made a speech entitled “Summer Economic Update” where he unveiled further Government supports and he unveiled the Government’s plan for jobs which he described as the “Second phase in the Government’s economic response to the crisis.”
Please see our July e-news for the highlights on the following announcements:
- Coronavirus Job Retention Scheme (CJRS) and Job Retention Bonus
- Kickstart Scheme and Measures to Help People Find Work
- Value Added Tax Reduced Rate for Hospitality and Tourism Sectors
- Eat Out To Help Out Scheme
- Stamp Duty Land Tax Holiday
- Residential Rates on Purchases from 8 July 2020 to 31 March 2021
Wednesday 8 July 2020
Today the Chancellor, Rishi Sunak, set out plans for the next stage of our economic recovery. Important announcements:
- Companies will receive a £1,000 bonus for each furloughed employee who is still employed as of 31 January 2021.
- From today until 31 March 2021, buyers will pay no Stamp Duty on the first £500k when they move home. Nearly 9 out of 10 people getting on or moving up the property ladder will pay no Stamp Duty at all.
- The Government will cut the rate of VAT applied on tourism and hospitality related activities from 20% to 5% for six months.
More information on all the Chancellors announcements can be found here.
Friday 19 June 2020
Please note that HMRCs online calculator can only be used for furlough claims ending on or before 30 June. After this date, you will need to work this out. This means that for any employees who you are flexibly furloughing, you’ll need to do a series of calculations to work out what the furlough pay will be for the usual hours that your employee is not working during your claim period.
Further guidance on how to calculate what you can claim can be found in the links below.
HMRC have provided a webinar on how the scheme is changing please click here to book your place.
Thursday 11 June 2020
Coronavirus Job Retention Scheme Updates
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.
Parents Returning to Work after Extended Leave Eligible for Furlough
People on paternity and maternity leave who return to work in the coming months will be eligible for the government’s furlough scheme, HM Treasury announced 9 June.
- Parents on statutory maternity and paternity leave who return to work in the coming months will be eligible for furlough scheme even after 10 June cut-off date
- Coronavirus Job Retention Scheme will close to new entrants at the end of June as new flexibilities are introduced to support economy
- This will only apply where they work for an employer who has previously furloughed employees
- This also applies to people on adoption leave, shared parental leave, and parental bereavement leave.
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.
HMRC have 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. We will update guidance and keep you informed when this is available.
Tuesday 2 June 2020
Job Retention Scheme - Flexible Furloughing and Important Dates
The Chancellor has announced major changes to the Coronavirus Job Retention Scheme (CJRS). HMRC have outlined the details below; see how you might be affected.
From 1 July, employers can bring back to work employees that have previously been furloughed for any amount of time and any shift pattern, while still being able to claim CJRS grant for their normal hours not worked. When claiming the CJRS grant for furloughed hours employers will need to report and claim for a minimum period of a week.
If your employees are unable to return to work, or you do not have work for them to do, they can remain on furlough and you can continue to claim the grant for their full hours under the existing rules.
From August, the government grant will be tapered as follows:
- For 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 minimum auto-enrolment pension contributions for the hours the employee does not work – employers will have to pay employees for the hours they work (applicable from 1 July).
- 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.
- From 1 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
- For the final month of the scheme 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.
It is important to note that the scheme will close to new entrants from 30 June. From this point onwards, you will only be able to furlough employees that you have furloughed for a full three-week period prior to 30 June.
This means that the final date that you 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.
The Chancellor has confirmed that the CJRS will close on 31 October.
Guidance and support
Further support on how to calculate claims with the extra flexibility will be available by 12 June and we will keep you informed about the details and your written requirements in due course. If you have any questions please contact us. See more details here.
Wednesday 13 May 2020
Chancellor Extends Furlough Scheme Until October
The government’s Coronavirus Job Retention Scheme will remain open until the end of October, the key points announced by Chancellor Rishi Sunak are:
- Coronavirus Job Retention Scheme will continue until end of October
- furloughed workers across UK will continue to receive 80% of their current salary, up to £2,500
- new flexibility will be introduced from August to get employees back to work and boost economy
The Government stated as we reopen the economy, we need to support people to get back to work. From the start of August, furloughed workers will be able to return to work part-time with employers being asked to pay a percentage towards the salaries of their furloughed staff.
The employer payments will substitute the contribution the government is currently making, ensuring that staff continue to receive 80% of their salary, up to £2,500 a month.
New statistics published today revealed the job retention scheme has protected 7.5 million workers and almost 1 million businesses.
The scheme will continue in its current form until the end of July and the changes to allow more flexibility will come in from the start of August.
More specific details and information around its implementation will be made available by the end of this month.
The government will explore ways through which furloughed workers who wish to do additional training or learn new skills are supported during this period. It will also continue to work closely with the Devolved Administrations to ensure the scheme supports people across the Union.
The Chancellor’s decision to extend the scheme, which will continue to apply across all regions and sectors in the UK economy, comes after the government outlined its plan for the next phase of its response to the Coronavirus outbreak.
Tuesday 21 April 2020
HMRCs Coronavirus job retention scheme portal is now live
HMRCs online portal for furlough claims opened yesterday (20th April), click here to make a claim online.
The scheme is now open to employees that were on the payroll prior to 19 March 2020, previously this was 28 February 2020. Please note an RTI submission must have been made prior to 19 March 2020 for those employees to be included.
The government have also extended the scheme to run up to the end of June 2020.
Details of how to calculate the claim can be found here.
Payroll clients of Humphrey & Co can either opt for the calculations and claim to be prepared for them, or they can prepare these themselves. All payroll clients should have received an email over the weekend detailing their options to them.
For those clients enjoying protection under our Tax Investigation Service, our time will be covered in connection with any enquiries HMRC subsequently make.
Wednesday 15 April 2020
Genuine HMRC contact and recognising phishing emails and texts
Please beware of emails and messages pertaining to be from HMRC. Take extra caution at this time and do not click on links or share personal details. Please talk to us if you want to confirm whether any correspondence is genuine. Find out how to recognise when contact from HMRC is genuine, and how to recognise phishing or bogus emails and text messages by clicking here.