COVID-19: Furlough scheme extended and Job Support Scheme (JSS) postponed

On Saturday 31 October, Prime Minister Boris Johnson announced a second national lockdown for England, with restaurants, gyms and non-essential shops set to close for four weeks from Thursday 5 November.

To support businesses impacted by the new measures, the Coronavirus Job Retention Scheme (CJRS) has been extended until December 2020. The Scheme was originally due to end on 31 October. The exact end date has not been announced but we would expect this to be 2 December 2020 if the current 4 week lockdown ends as the government expect.

How will the extended furlough scheme work?

The level of the grant will mirror levels available under the CJRS in August. Furloughed employees will receive 80% of their current salary for hours not worked, up to a maximum of £2,500 per month.

Employers will be asked to cover National Insurance and employer pension contributions. As under the current CJRS, flexible furloughing will be allowed in addition to full-time furloughing. Additionally, employers are still able to choose to top up employee wages above the scheme grant at their own expense if they wish.

Who is eligible for the extended CJRS?

All employers with a UK bank account and UK PAYE schemes can claim the grant.

Employees must have been employed on or before the 30 October 2020. They do not have to have been furloughed previously to be eligible.

The Government will confirm shortly when claims can first be made in respect of employee wage costs during November, but there will be no gap in eligibility for support between the previously announced end-date of CJRS and this extension.

Job Support Scheme (JSS) postponed

The JSS, which was scheduled to come in on 1 November, has been postponed until the furlough scheme ends.

Mortgage payment holiday extended

Mortgage payment holidays will no longer end on 31 October. Borrowers who have been impacted by coronavirus and have not yet had a mortgage payment holiday will be entitled to a six month holiday, and those that have already started a mortgage payment holiday will be able to top up to six months without this being recorded on their credit file.

Additional grants for businesses required to close

Businesses required to close in England due to local or national restrictions will be eligible for the following:

  • For properties with a rateable value of £15k or under, grants to be £1,334 per month, or £667 per two weeks
  • For properties with a rateable value of between £15k-£51k grants to be £2,000 per month, or £1,000 per two weeks
  • For properties with a rateable value of £51k or over grants to be £3,000 per month, or £1,500 per two weeks

How can we help?

If you have any questions regarding the furlough scheme, please contact Partner Andrew Noton (andrewnoton@lubbockfine.co.uk) or your usual Lubbock Fine contact.

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