Updated Furlough Guidance – November 2020

Dylan Loughlin

The UK Government has now issued updated guidance since extending the Furlough Scheme to the spring of 2021. The scheme is much the same as it has been, with a few exceptions:

“The government is reviewing whether employers should be eligible to claim for employees serving contractual or statutory notice periods and will change the approach for claim periods starting on or after 1 December 2020, with further guidance published in late November.” 

In other words, if you’re an employer thinking about dismissing someone (whether for redundancy or otherwise), make sure you give them notice before 1 December.

“From December 2020, HMRC will publish employer names for companies and Limited Liability Partnerships (LLPs), the company registration number of those who have made claims under the scheme for the month of December onwards.”

Here are what we see as some of the other key points:-

  • As is well known, from 1 November 2020 employers can claim 80% of an employee’s usual salary for hours not worked, up to a maximum of £2,500 per month.
  • Employers can claim for employees who were employed on 30 October 2020, as long as they have made a PAYE RTI submission to HMRC between the 20 March 2020 and 30 October 2020, notifying a payment of earnings for that employee, unless they re-employed an employee after 23 September 2020.
  • There is no maximum number of employees that employers can claim for (under the existing furlough scheme, employers could only claim for the number of employees they had claimed for previous to June).  Employees returning from maternity leave need to give the statutory eight weeks’ notice to end maternity leave early in order to be furloughed (and get furlough pay, typically higher than SMP).  
  • The employer must confirm in writing to the employee that they have been furloughed, and keep a written record for five years. I have updated the furlough agreement in line with the latest advice, if you require this, please send me an email.
  • Employers can agree retrospectively to furlough someone with effect from 1 November 2020, as long as the agreement to retrospectively claim furlough occurs on or before 13 November.  That’s this Friday.

Remember, you must seek employee permission to place them onto the CJRS Furlough Scheme. For further advice, contact a member of the Copacetic team today.