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Furlough scheme eligibility date extended

Posted by Davenport Solicitors Team on April 16, 2020 in Employment Law, Human Resources

The Furlough scheme eligibility date has now been extended to 19 March 2020, from 28 February 2020.

Under the Coronavirus Job Retention Scheme, employers can access government support to continue paying part of their employees’ salary (80%) for those employees that would have otherwise been laid off during this crisis.

Initially, the scheme supported those employed up to and on 28 February, leaving many workers who changed employers after this date without any income. Following widespread criticism, the date has been extended to 19 March. One day before the scheme was first announced.

Read more: Coronavirus FAQs: Coronavirus Job Retention Scheme

Employers can claim for furloughed employees that were employed and on their PAYE payroll on or before 19 March 2020. This means that the employee must have been notified to HMRC through an RTI submission notifying payment in respect of that employee on or before 19 March 2020.

This change makes the scheme more generous while keeping the substantial fraud risks under control and is expected to benefit over 200,000 employees.

Employers will be able to make a claim for 80% of employees’ wages, up to £2,500 per month, under the Coronavirus Job Retention Scheme when its claims portal opens on Monday 20 April.

Lastly, a recent direction issued by the Treasury to HMRC states that an employer must have instructed an employee in writing to cease all work in order for that employee to be eligible under the scheme. Previously, HMRC’s guidance said employees only needed to be notified that they needed to stop working.

The material contained on this website contains general information only and does not constitute legal or other professional advice and should not be relied upon as such. While every care has been taken in the preparation of the information on this site, readers are advised to seek specific legal advice in relation to any decision or course of action.

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