Furlough Scheme extended until 31 March 2021


The Chancellor has announced that the Furlough Scheme will remain open until 31 March 2021. Full guidance is due to be published on the 10 November but what we know for the moment is:

  • For claim periods running to January 2021, employees will receive 80% of their usual salary for hours not worked, up to a maximum of £2,500 per month.

  • The percentage may be reviewed for February and March.

  • Employers can claim even if they, or the relevant employees, had not previously used the Scheme.

  • The furlough will continue to be flexible, so employees can continue to do some work.

  • Employees who have previously been furloughed continue to have their reference pay and hours based on the existing furlough calculations (as under the old scheme).

  • Employees who have not previously been furloughed will have a different pay/hours reference period. Full guidance will be provided on 10 November, but broadly the pay is based on 80% of the wages payable in the last pay period ending on or before 30 October 2020 (for those on fixed wages), or 80% of the average payable between the start date of their employment or 6 April 2020 (whichever is later) and the day before their CJRS extension furlough periods begins (for those on variable wages).

  • Employees can (but don’t have to) be furloughed if they are shielding in line with public health guidance (or need to stay at home with someone who is shielding).

  • Employees that were employed and on the payroll on 23 September 2020 who were made redundant or stopped working for their employer after that date can be re-employed and claimed for.

  • The Job Support Scheme and the Job Retention Bonus have been put on hold (for now).

  • There should be a written agreement between the employer and employee.

As always, we are here to help, so please get in touch if we can be of assistance, especially preparing the written agreement.

HMRC Policy Paper

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