The Chancellor has announced that CJRS, the ‘furlough’ scheme will be extended
until the end of March 2021 for all parts of the UK and also confirmed that the Job Retention Bonus will no longer be paid in February 2021, as CJRS will be available at that time. An alternative retention incentive will be put in place at the appropriate time.
The JRB is a one-off ‘bonus’ payment to employers of £1,000 for every eligible employee* who they have previously claimed for under the scheme, and who remains continuously employed through to 31st January 2021. Where a claim for an employee was incorrectly made, a Job Retention Bonus will not be payable.
Employers need to ensure that they have:
- complied with their obligations to pay and file PAYE accurately and on time under the Real Time Information (RTI) reporting system for all employees
- maintained enrolment for PAYE online
- a UK bank account
Payroll must be:
- kept up to date
- including accurately reporting their employee’s details and wages on the Full Payment Submission (FPS) through Real Time Information (RTI) reporting system
- be accurate
- address all requests from HMRC to provide missing employee data in respect of historic Coronavirus Job Retention Scheme claims
To note - failure to maintain accurate records may result in the employer not being eligible for the JRB. Our recent blog about employers unwittingly committing tax fraud detailed how some employers unknowingly claimed under the CJRS AND claimed the Employers Allowance grant. The CJRS covered the employers National Insurance contribution (NIC) for a period of time and the EA is a grant for National Insurance contribution. It is deemed as fraud to claim more than one grant for the same component however as this may have been claimed for unknowingly, it can be rectified with HMRC (click here to read our blog for further information.) HMRC have stated that they will withhold the JRB payment where it believes there is a risk that Coronavirus Job Retention Scheme claims may have been fraudulently claimed or inflated, until the enquiry is completed.
There are further eligibility requirements such as TUPE or where an employer has changed ownership, these cases can be complicated and it is recommended that you seek advice from a professional (such as Cashtrak.)
Employers will be able to claim from February, 2021 through Gov.uk. More details about the process will be published by the end of this month.
*Eligible employees must earn at least £520 a month on average between the 1 November 2020 and 31 January 2021. Employers will be able to claim the Job Retention Bonus after they have filed PAYE for January and payments will be made to employers from February 2021.