COVID-19 Update: Job Retention Scheme

COVID-19 Update: Job Retention Scheme

Further to recent posts regarding the Coronavirus Job Retention Scheme (CJRS) we’ve now had an indication from HMRC that the online portal used to administer this scheme will go live on 20 April.

In an email received from HMRC overnight they confirm that further guidance regarding the application process will be published within the next few days so that employers can prepare. Once we receive this additional detail we will be in a position to advise with certainty the information that we will require to submit a claim on your behalf.

There was also welcome news that employers will be able to apply for grant payments under the Job Retention Scheme up to 14 days in advance of the relevant payroll date. The indications are that upon receipt of a claim HMRC intend to issue payment within “4 to 6 days“. In practical terms this means that for payroll dates around the end of April/early May there will be scope to make a claim and receive payment of grant funding in advance of wages payments being issued to employees.

We would however urge caution as there are many millions of furloughed employees so the demands placed on HMRC’s new portal are likely to be significant. Given the speed at which the portal has been developed and the limited time for testing there may well be teething issues to be dealt with.

Clients who use our payroll bureau for their wages processing

Many of our clients have workers that are furloughed and in anticipation of the additional administrative burden we are likely to face we have introduced additional resource within our payroll department to cope with the likely demand but we would ask that clients bear with us through this period as patience will be required from all sides.

We are currently putting in place a system to allow us to track furloughed employees and over the course of the next few days we will be in touch with a standard template to allow us to gather the necessary data.

Clients who process their own payroll

For those clients who process their own payroll we will happy to assist you to gather the necessary information, calculate the claims that are able to be submitted and provide any advice as necessary. To begin with the key will be to ensure that you have access to the PAYE online service via your HMRC (Government Gateway) account as this is likely to be required to submit a claim to HMRC. If you have not yet registered for PAYE online you should login to your account now and add this service (click here to do so).

What information will I need?

To make a claim for grant funding under the CJRS you will need the following information:

  • your employer PAYE reference number
  • the number of employees being furloughed
  • National Insurance Numbers for the employees you want to furlough
  • Names of the employees you want to furlough
  • Payroll/works number for the employees you want to furlough
  • your Self Assessment Unique Taxpayer Reference or Corporation Tax Unique Taxpayer Reference or Company Registration Number
  • the claim period (start and end date)
  • amount claimed (per the minimum length of furloughing of 3 consecutive weeks)
  • your bank account number and sort code
  • your contact name
  • your phone number

When can I claim?

Based on the latest information, claims will be able to be submitted on or after 20 April in respect of wages paid to employees who have been furloughed during the current Coronavirus crisis. Claims can be backdated to 1 March 2020 in respect of employees who have been furloughed on or after that date provided the relevant employees were already on the payroll as at 28 February 2020.

When will I know more?

HMRC have confirmed that further guidance will be available in the next day or two in respect of the mechanics of the claim process. As soon as we have that information we will release a further update. In the meantime we will be contacting all our clients who employ staff to ensure that they are aware of the requirements and can gather the information in preparation for the claim process going live.

Further information:

In the meantime if you have any enquiries feel free to contact us directly on This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. and we will be pleased to assist.

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