Government extends Furlough to March and increases self-employed support scheme

by | Nov 6, 2020

As the lockdown has now started for England and continues elsewhere, the Government has changed its mind again about business supports and decided to extend the Coronavirus Job Retention Scheme (CJRS) and the Self-Employment Income Support Scheme (SEISS) across all regions of the UK.

The Chancellor has announced that CJRS will be extended until the end of March 2021 for all parts of the UK. For claim periods running to 31 January 2021, the UK Government will pay 80% of employees’ usual wages for hours not worked, up to a cap of £2,500 per month. The UK Government will review the policy in January to decide whether economic circumstances are improving enough to ask employers to contribute more.

It was also confirmed that the Job Retention Bonus will no longer be paid in February 2021, as CJRS will be available at that time. An alternative retention incentive will be put in place at the appropriate time.

There have been many announcements this week and we have summarised these below. Please talk to us about getting Government support during these tough times. We are here to help and can work plans out with you.   

The CJRS will remain open until 31 March 2021. For claim periods running to January 2021, employees will receive 80% of their usual salary for hours not worked, up to a maximum of £2,500 per month. The £2,500 cap is proportional to the hours not worked.

The Government will review the policy in January to decide whether economic circumstances are improving enough to ask employers to contribute more.

Claims can be made by employers across the UK that meet the eligibility criteria.

We will update all our clients on the eligibility criteria after the 11 November expected details of how the scheme will be run.

If we processed your previous claims rest assured we will be updating our systems for the extended scheme and we will be able to estimate your claims under the new scheme shortly.  

Similarly, support for millions more workers through the Self-Employment Income Support Scheme (SEISS) will be increased, with the third grant covering November to January calculated at 80% of average trading profits, up to a maximum of £7,500.

Already announced earlier this week are:

  • Grants of up to £3,000 per month for businesses which are closed worth more than £1 billion every month
  • £1.1 billion is being given to Local Authorities, distributed on the basis of £20 per head, for one-off payments to enable them to support businesses more broadly
  • Plans to extend existing government-backed loan schemes and the Future Fund to the end of January, and an ability to top-up Bounce Back Loans
  • An extension to the mortgage payment holiday for homeowners
  • Up to £500 million of funding for councils to support the local public health response.

More information from the Government on yesterday’s announcement can be seen here: https://assets.publishing.service.gov.uk/government/uploads/system/uploads/attachment_data/file/932977/ECONOMIC_SUPPORT_FACTSHEET_5_November.pdf

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