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Extension to government furlough scheme
The UK Government has reviewed the terms of the scheme, and announced that the Coronavirus Job Retention Scheme (CJRS) will remain at the current level of 80% of usual wages for the hours not worked, and will be extended until the end of April 2021.
Reminder of monthly deadlines
Thank you if you submitted your November furlough claim by the deadline of 14 December.
If you did not submit your claim by this date, we may still accept it if you have a reasonable excuse for not claiming by the deadline. Go to GOV.UK and search ’claim for wages’ for more support.
Please note that reasonable excuses do not apply to late claims for periods before November, which should have been submitted already.
What you need to do now
You can now make December claims
You can now submit your claims for periods in December. These must be made by 14 January.
To help you plan ahead to meet the monthly deadlines, here’s a list of the key dates you need to know:
Frequently asked questions about CJRS
You can find everything you need to know about the CJRS on GOV.UK by searching 'Job Retention Scheme', but here are some answers to the most frequently asked questions.
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 us and repay the money by the latest of whichever date applies below:
If you do not do this, you may have to pay interest and a penalty as well as repaying the excess CJRS grant. For more information on interest search 'Interest rates for late and early payments' on GOV.UK.
You can repay as part of your next online claim without needing to call us. If you claimed too much but do not plan to submit further claims, you can let us know and make a repayment online through our card payment service or by bank transfer – go to 'Pay Coronavirus Job Retention Scheme grants back' on GOV.UK.
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 November is Tuesday 29 December.
To find out how to amend your claim, search 'Get help with the Coronavirus Job Retention Scheme' on GOV.UK.
Why have monthly deadlines been introduced?
Introducing a 14-day deadline ensures that we can more regularly and accurately see and react to the impact of coronavirus on businesses and individuals.
Our data suggests that most employers have made their claim within 14 days each month. You can go to GOV.UK and search ’claim for wages’ if you were unable to meet a deadline.
Can I use CJRS grants to pay for holiday leave?
If you have furloughed employees because of the effect of coronavirus on your business, you can claim under the CJRS for periods of paid leave they take while on furlough, including for bank holidays such as Christmas Day or Boxing Day.
If your employee is flexibly furloughed, you can count any time taken as holiday as furloughed hours rather than working hours. This means you can claim 80% of their usual wages for these hours. You should not place employees on furlough just because they are going to be on paid leave.
If a furloughed employee takes holiday, you should top up their pay to their normal rate in line with the Working Time Regulations. For more information search 'check if you can claim for your employees' wages' on GOV.UK.
Can I include a Christmas bonus in my calculation for the grant?
You can claim for regular payments that you are contractually obliged to pay your employees, including compulsory commission, fees and overtime. However, you cannot claim for discretionary commission, non-contractual bonuses (including tips) and non-cash payments. For more information search 'steps to take before calculating your claim' on GOV.UK.
How do I calculate the grant amount for employees?
A CJRS calculator can work out most fixed or variable pay calculations – you can find our CJRS calculator on GOV.UK by searching 'calculate how much you can claim'. However, the CJRS calculator cannot be used for some employees, including those who:
For a complete list of circumstances, search 'calculate how much you can claim' on GOV.UK.
If you cannot use the calculator, you will need to work out what you can claim manually using the calculation guidance or by seeking professional advice from an accountant or tax adviser. It’s your responsibility to check that the amount you are claiming for is correct.
Where can I get further support?
Just pick up the phone and call Winchester Bourne on 01962 715671 or email [email protected].
Thinking that it's time to pass the responsibility of running your payroll to the experts? It's simple to do.
Contact us on 01962 715671 or email me [email protected] and we will get a quote over to you. It does not cost a lot of money to get your staff paid correctly every week, month or 4 weekly. Then you can have complete peace of mind!
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