Coronavirus Job Retention Scheme – Update
3 September 2020 by Bushra Elzubeir
Since 1st July 2020, furloughed employees can return to work on a part-time basis. Employers must pay in full, for full days worked, and can claim under the Coronavirus Job Retention Scheme for days not worked, subject to relevant caps.
Only employees who started furlough on or before 10th June 2020 were eligible for the new scheme, unless they were on a period of statutory family leave, or a military reservist on a period of mobilisation.
- Since 1 August 2020 employers have been required to pay 80% of a furloughed employee’s wages by way of furlough pay.
- From September 2020 the Government will pay 70% of employees’ pay, capped at £2,187.50.
- From October 2020 the Government will pay 60% of employees’ pay, capped at £1,875.00.
As furloughed employees can return to work on a part-time basis from 1st July 2020, the new caps are proportional to the hours not worked.
Do employers need to enter into fresh Furlough Agreements with employees if their furlough period goes on beyond the end of June 2020?
Yes, if the employer wishes to engage a furloughed employee to return to work part-time after 1st July 2020, employees are prohibited from working for their employer whilst on furlough. So, it is best practice to confirm agreements in writing in order to successfully claim in respect of flexible furlough from 1st July 2020.
Where employees begin back at work part-time after 1st July 2020, it is advisable that a side letter is entered into supplemental to the initial Furlough Agreement which was entered into.
Can additional employees be furloughed from 1st July 2020?
No, unless they have been on statutory family leave or are a military reservist on a period of mobilisation.
Can an employer make additional claims in respect of the same period?
No. Employers are entitled to furlough different groups and numbers of employees at different times but they cannot make more than one claim during their claim period for each PAYE scheme it operates, subject to the exceptions for returning employees and those transferring under TUPE transfers.
What is the limit on the number of employees who can be furloughed in a claim period?
There is now a limit on the number of employees who can be furloughed in a claim period. This applied from 1st July 2020. The number of employees an employer can claim for in a single claim period from 1st July 2020 cannot exceed the maximum of the number of the employees the employer claimed for under any claim ending by 30th June 2020.
For more on Employment Law during the Coronavirus pandemic, visit our Coronavirus Legal Advice hub.
The Coronavirus Job Retention Scheme ends on the 31st October 2020. To find out more about the new Job Support Scheme that begins on November 1st, 2020 – read our latest blog.
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