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Good morning. On Friday, HMRC confirmed the Job Retention Bonus rules that could see businesses claiming £1,000 for each previously furloughed employee. In addition, the application date for the second round of Self-Employment Income Support Scheme has also been confirmed.

Today we’ll look at both schemes so you know whether you qualify – and when you can claim.

Job Retention Bonus rules confirmed

Chancellor Rishi Sunak announced the new Job Retention Bonus (JRB) scheme in his summer statement last month.

Essentially, if you bring employees off furlough and you still employ them by the end of January, you could qualify for a £1,000 bonus for each worker.

To qualify for this one-off bonus, you need to fulfil the following criteria:

  • Each worker you take off furlough must be continuously employed until 31 January 2021.
  • Employees must earn a minimum average of £520 per month from the beginning of November until the end of January.
  • Although the Coronavirus Job Retention Scheme (CJRS) closed to new entrants after 10 June, if you claimed after then for people returning from parental leave or military reserve service, they can still qualify for the Job Retention Bonus.
  • Employees transferred under TUPE are also eligible, as long as they have been continuously employed and meet all other criteria.

Currently, the finer details of submitting claims have yet to be released. However, the government has published fuller details of the JRB scheme here. In September, HMRC will issue full guidance for the scheme.

Coronavirus Job Retention Scheme changes in August 2020

If you have employees on furlough, don’t forget that the Coronavirus Job Retention Scheme changed at the beginning of this month. Government will still pay 80% of employees’ salaries (up to £2,500), but you will now have to cover employers’ NI and pension contributions. From 1 September 2020, government will cover 70% of salary and from, 1 October 2020, only 60%. In these months, you will have to make up the shortfall so each worker gets a minimum of 80% salary.

SEISS application date confirmed

If you’re self-employed, it will seem a long time since the first Self-Employment Income Support Scheme grants got paid. The good news is that government has confirmed the application date for the second (and final) round of grants – 17 August 2020.

To qualify, you need to confirm that Coronavirus adversely affected your business on or after 14 July 2020. If you are eligible, you can claim a taxable grant worth 70% of your average trading profits. It will be paid out in an instalment that covers three months and it is capped at £6,570.

You can find full SEISS eligibility criteria here. HMRC will contact you directly if it believes you are eligible.

As always, if you are a THP client and have any questions about these government support schemes, please get in touch with your account manager.

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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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