As you may have heard, hours before the furlough scheme was due to end, the Government announced it will be extended from 1 November until December, as it brings in a further lockdown in England.
We don’t yet have full details on the extension of the furlough scheme, but here’s what we know so far:
- The Job support scheme (JSS) has been delayed from 1 November and will launch when the new furlough extension ends.
- The extended furlough scheme will continue until December. The precise end date is unclear, but the lockdown restrictions in England look set to be in place until 2 December.
- The government will pay up to 80% of an employee’s normal pay, capped at £2,500 and employers will be responsible for NICs and pension contributions.
- You can either put staff on full-time furlough or Flexi-furlough is an option, so employees can work part-time hours and still receive a furlough for any hours not worked.
- You DON’T need to have been furloughed before to take part. However, you do need to have been on your employer’s PAYE payroll on 30 October to be eligible. (To be precise, you must have made a Real-Time Information payroll submission on or before 30 October).
- Employees on all types of contract can take part. We’re assuming this means that eligibility will be the same as furlough, so those on zero-hours contracts and fixed-term contracts can claim.
- Many businesses issued JSS agreements to staff. If you have done this, you should contact your team to explain that change and to ask them to agree to continue on the furlough scheme instead. If you need help with how to communicate this to your team, just get in touch.
We’re expecting further guidance on this to be released and we will be drafting letters for clients but in the meantime, if you need any HR advice on anything, please get in touch. We may not have all of the answers on this new update yet, but we’ll do our best to find out for you!