Payroll Legislation

The Coronavirus Job Retention Scheme: What's the Latest?


The Coronavirus Job Retention Scheme: What's the Latest?

Due Date




On Friday 20 March 2020, Chancellor Rishi Sunak set out a package of temporary measures to support UK businesses through this period of disruption caused by the coronavirus outbreak. One of those packages announced was the Job Retention Scheme.

The initial scheme ended on 30 June 2020 and the new scheme opened on 1 July 2020, allowing for greater flexibility in furloughing staff. This included flexibilities allowing employees to work part time while still being eligible for furlough grants, and the introduction of employer contributions.

The March Budget confirmed the continuation of the Coronavirus Job Retention Scheme (CJRS) until September 2021.

Key Points About the Scheme

  • The scheme will remain in its current form until the end of June 2021.
  • As the economy reopens and demand returns, the government will introduce employer contributions towards the cost of unworked hours until September 2021.
  • The employer contribution towards the cost of unworked hours will be 10% in July, 20% in August and 20% in September.
  • The above is applicable to all employees returned on an FPS by 2 March.
  • Employees will receive 80% of their usual salary for hours not worked, up to a maximum of £2,500 per month. The £2,500 cap is proportional to the hours not worked.
  • Employer contributions during the CJRS extension until June will be the same as in August 2020. This means employers will have to pay the employee’s wages for the hours they work as normal, as well as employer National Insurance and employer pension contributions.
  • Employers do not need to have used the CJRS previously.
  • Employers across the UK can claim, whether their businesses are open or closed.
  • Employers can claim for employees who were employed and on their PAYE payroll on 30 October 2020. The employer must have made a PAYE Real Time Information (RTI) submission to HMRC between the 20 March 2020 and 30 October 2020, notifying a payment of earnings for that employee.
  • Claims must be made by the 14th of the following month.
  • Employers will have flexibility to use the scheme for employees for any amount of time or shift pattern, furloughing employees on either a full-time or part-time basis, and will be able to vary the hours worked in agreement with the employee.
  • As under the existing CJRS rules, employees can be on any type of employment contract.

This legislation is current and was updated on 13 April 2021.

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