The government has published a factsheet on the Job Support Scheme that was announced by the Chancellor yesterday.

The factsheet provides more information about the scheme which I have summarised below.

  • The scheme will open on 1 November 2020 and run for 6 months;
  • Employers using the scheme will also be able to claim the Job Retention Bonus if they meet the eligibility criteria (which can pay employers £1,000 if an employee that was previously furloughed remains continuous employed through to 31st January 2021 – see https://www.gov.uk/government/publications/job-retention-bonus/job-retention-bonus);
  • All employers with a UK bank account and UK PAYE schemes can claim the grant but large businesses will have to show their turnover has decreased;
  • Employees must be on an employer’s PAYE payroll / Real Time Information (RTI) submission on or before 23 September 2020;
  • For the first three months of the scheme, employee must work at least 33% of their usual hours. After 3 months, the Government nay increase this threshold;
  • Employees can cycle on and off the scheme;
  • Each short-time working arrangement must cover a minimum period of seven days;
  • For every hour not worked by the employee, both the Government and employer will pay a third each of the usual hourly wage for that employee;
  • The Government contribution will be capped at £697.92 a month;
  • Grant payments will be made in arrears and paid monthly;
  • The grant will not cover Class 1 employer NICs or pension contributions, although these contributions will remain payable by the employer;
  • “Usual wages” calculations will follow a similar methodology as for the Coronavirus Job Retention Scheme;
  • Employers must pay employees their contracted wages for hours worked, and the Government and employer contributions for hours not worked;
  • Employees cannot be made redundant or put on notice of redundancy during the period within which their employer is claiming the grant for that employee; and
  • Employers must agree the new short-time working arrangements with their staff, make any changes to the employment contract by agreement, and notify the employee in writing. This means that new agreements with employees will be needed if the right to put an employee on short-time working has not already been reserved in an employee’s employment contract or previously been agreed in writing.

I would strongly advise anyone who is considering using the scheme to review the factsheet themselves and be aware that details of the scheme is subject to change as the government will be publishing further guidance. 

If you have any queries or need advice on any employment law related matter, please get in touch: kerrycurd@wbw.co.uk or telephone 01626 202404.