Latest on Furlough

The furlough updates continue to come thick and fast this month and, although we had expected the demise of the scheme on 31 October, the support available to employers has actually increased. There are also some significant changes to note.

As you’ll be aware, the recent re-ignition of the scheme brings us back to government contribution of 80% of wages for hours not worked (up to a limit of £2,500 per month) between 1 November 2020 and 31 January 2021.  In January 2021 the scheme will be reviewed – employers may then be required to make a larger contribution for the remainder of the scheme’s life to the end of March.

The guidance is extensive – running to thirteen new documents. To save you reading them all, some key take outs:

  • the extended scheme is open for those employed on 30 October 2020
  • it’s also available for employees who stopped working on or after 23 September 2020, but were then rehired
  • you do not need to have previously claimed for an employee before 30 October 2020, if you wish to claim for periods from 1 November 2020
  • employers can furlough employees for any amount of time and any work pattern, while still being able to claim the grant for the hours not worked
  • employers can continue to claim for periods ending on or before 31 October 2020, until the deadline on 30 November 2020
  • BUT, from 1 November there will be monthly deadlines for claims. Claims must then 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)
  • there is no maximum number of employees that an employer can claim for from 1 November 2020
  • in a significant development, from 1 December employers will be prevented from using the furlough grant to pay for contractual or statutory notice periods – which may hasten the redundancy plans of some employers
  • additionally, it will be a condition of making a claim that the employer accepts that information will be published about claims on the internet – including the name of the employer and the amount claimed.

We are here to help with your furlough queries, so please do get in touch if you need support in navigating the latest guidance.

 

If you would like further advice tailored to your particular circumstances, please contact us.