Job Support Scheme
Announced as part of the Winter Jobs Package, the Job Support Scheme will allow employers to keep employees in a job on shorter hours rather than making them redundant.
Recap: The scheme will directly support the wages of people in viable jobs working at least a third of their normal hours and will run for six months and begin in November. All small & medium sized businesses are eligible to apply – but larger businesses only when their turnover has fallen through the crisis. It is open to employers across the UK even if they have previously not used the furlough scheme.
Below is some guidance set out for employers and employees, including eligibility and requirements.
- All employers with a UK bank account and UK PAYE schemes can claim the grant
- Neither the employer nor the employee needs to have previously used the Coronavirus Job Retention Scheme
- The employer must be a Small and Medium-Sized Enterprise (SME) or, if a large business, show that their turnover has fallen as a result of experiencing difficulties from Covid-19. There will be no financial assessment test for SMEs
- As listed on the Government’s website, the expectation is that large businesses will not make capital distributions, such as paying dividends, whilst they are using the scheme. Further details will be expected to be set out regarding this guidance, however
- There is no requirement for the employer to have previously furloughed workers under the CJRS
- The scheme can be used alongside the Job Retention Bonus
- Anyone employed as of September 23, 2020 will be eligible but employees must not be on a redundancy notice. This means a Real Time Information (RTI) submission notifying payment to that employee to HMRC must have been made on or before September 23, 2020
- In order to support viable jobs, for the first three months of the scheme the employees must work at least 33% of their usual hours. After 3 months, the Government will consider whether to increase this minimum hours threshold
- Employees should be paid as normal. The employer and the government will each cover one-third of the employees’ usual pay for every hour not worked, with the government contribution to be capped at £697.92 per month
- Employees will be able to cycle on and off the scheme and do not have to be working the same pattern each month, but each short-time working arrangement must cover a minimum period of seven days