How To Access the Coronavirus Job Retention Scheme?

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Jessica Lambert, 1 May, 2020

How To Access the Coronavirus Job Retention Scheme? 

The announcement of the Coronavirus Job Retention Scheme meant that business owners up and down the country let out a massive sigh of relief following weeks of uncertainty around COVID-19. It is the kind of support that businesses, as well as people across the country, need in a time like this and it is hoped thousands of jobs will be saved thanks to the scheme. 

It’s likely you have already heard about the scheme, but if you are unsure about what it means for your business, or how you can access it, read on below.

What Is the Coronavirus Job Retention Scheme? 

This temporary scheme was introduced by the government in March and it is open to all UK employers, providing the employees involved were on the business’s PAYE payroll on or before the 19th of March 2020. 

Under the scheme, your business can choose to furlough some or even all its staff and the government will cover 80% of each employees’ wages, up to a maximum of £2,500 per employee - plus any employer National Insurance and pension contributions. 

The scheme is currently set to run until the end of June and businesses will not be expected to pay this money back. Employers can backdate from the 1st of March 2020 if employees had already been furloughed by that date.  


How Do I Make A Claim?

- Choose which employees you want to furlough.

- Have conversations with the employees you wish to put on the scheme, as they must agree to be furloughed.

- Decide whether you are going to give them 80% of their wages (all funded by the government) or whether your business intends to top up the final 20%. Notify the employee how much of the usual salary they will receive - you can use the this Coronavirus Job Retention Scheme Calculator to work out 80% of your employees’ wages.

- Each furloughed employee must immediately stop work. Any employee put on the scheme will not be able to conduct any work whatsoever on behalf of your company for the duration of their furlough leave. 

- To make your claim, you will need the Government Gateaway user ID and password you were given when you registered for PAYE online. Once you have that information to hand, click here to make your claim. 

- Submitting your claim must be done in one complete session. You will not be able to save any progress and return at a later point. Sessions will automatically time out after 15 minutes of inactivity. 


For additional insight on the Coronavirus Job Retention Scheme, read our blog on What Your Business Needs To Know About Furlough. If you require more SME advice regarding the Coronavirus situation, take a look at the additional resources on our Coronavirus Hub. 

BY Jessica Lambert

1 May, 2020