The scheme announced on Friday provides employers with the support to continue to pay part of their employees’ wages that would have otherwise been laid off. The scheme is open to all UK businesses. To get access to the scheme you need to:
- designate affected employees as ‘furloughed workers,’ and notify your employees of this change – changing the status of employees remains subject to existing employment law and, depending on the employment contract, may be subject to negotiation.
- submit information to HMRC about the employees that have been furloughed and their earnings through a new online portal (HMRC will set out further details on the information required)
HMRC will reimburse 80% of furloughed workers wage costs, up to a cap of £2,500 per month. HMRC are working urgently to set up a system for reimbursement. Existing systems are not set up to facilitate payments to employers. Employers can choose to top up the payment to the employees to their actual salary.
Employees should not undertake any work for employers while they are furloughed. Employers can choose to fund the difference between this payment and the employee’s salary, but they do not have to. For employees whose wages are reduced due to this scheme they may be able to receive additional support through universal credit.
It is intended for the Coronavirus Job Retention Scheme to run for at least 3 months from 1 March 2020, but it will be extend if necessary.
Further guidance is available at: