Over the weekend, Boris Johnson announced a second national lockdown to take effect from this Thursday until 2 December.
In light of this, the furlough scheme, which was due to end on 31 October, has been extended for the period of lockdown. We are still awaiting full details of the scheme and how it will differ from previously, but what we know currently:
- The scheme will be extended until the lockdown ends in December
- HMRC will pay 80% of wages (capped at £2,500) compared to the current 60% with the employer topping up
- The scheme will be an extension of the ‘flexi-furlough’ where employees can work some hours but can be furloughed for others. They will be paid full pay for the hours they work
- To be eligible, employees must have been employed by you on or before 30 October
- This is to be demonstrated by having submitted an RTI submission with them included by the cut off date
- Staff do not have to have been furloughed previously to be furloughed under the extension
- Whilst the system is updated, claims will be retrospective and you will have to pay your staff first
Questions remain, including whether new written agreements will need to be entered into, or whether existing ones can be rolled over, and also whether employees recently made redundant can be re-employed and furloughed.