Trying to keep on top of the latest news about government funding schemes these days is rather like trying to nail paint to a wall. Now that we have hit the first day of the England-wide lockdown and the Bank of England has announced a fresh £150bn stimulus package, there’s a whole raft of changes to communicate – including the furlough scheme extended to March.

Furlough scheme extended to March

Ignore our post on Monday about the furlough scheme being extended to cover November. It’s now being extended to March. Government will now pay 80% of an employee’s furloughed hours until 31st March, via the Coronavirus Job Retention Scheme.

To qualify, employees need to have been employed and on a payroll on 23rd September. Importantly, anyone who was made redundant or stopped working after this date can be re-employed and claimed for. Employers need to have made an RTI submission to HMRC from 20th March to 23rd September, notifying payment of earnings for each employee.

Employers will still have to pay employer’s NICs and pension contributions. Flexible furlough is still allowed, meaning employees can work part time – with wages covered by the employer as normal for the worked hours.

Job Support Scheme shelved

This scheme was originally going to replace CJRS, or the furlough scheme, at the beginning of November. It was then supposed to kick in after 2nd December. It has now been shelved indefinitely, although the Chancellor has not ruled out bringing it back at a later point.

Job Retention Bonus scrapped

This was to be a payment of £1,000 per furloughed employee who was kept in employment until the end of January 2021. This has now been scrapped.

Self-Employed Income Support Scheme

Our last post on SEISS explained how the third grant was to be increased to 80% of average monthly profits for November 2020, dropping to 40% for December and January. This has now been increased to 80% for the period November 2020 to January 2021. However, it is capped at £7,500 for the full three months.

If you are a THP client and would like any advice on the above schemes, please get in touch. Alternatively, if you’re looking for a new accountant, talk to us. We’re open for business as normal, although most of our team is working from home.

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About Ben Locker

Ben Locker is a copywriter who specialises in business-to-business marketing, writing about everything from software and accountancy to construction and power tools. He co-founded the Professional Copywriters’ Network, the UK’s association for commercial writers, and is named in Direct Marketing Association research as ‘one of the copywriters who copywriters rate’.

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