Lockdown II: the latest measures

Published: 6 November 2020

As we enter the second lockdown, the Chancellor has brought welcome news to many businesses yesterday by extending the furlough scheme through to March 2021.

This means that a business can furlough any employees that were on the last payroll run and RTI submission to HMRC on or before 30th October – no previous furlough claim needs to have been made by the employer – the grant covers 80% of the employee’s wages (the furlough rate for January – March 2021 will be confirmed in January 2021) for time on furlough up to a cap of £2,500 (for the full month of furlough) – all of the furlough claim must be passed onto the employee.

Employees can work part time & are paid by the employer for the hours worked based on normal rate of pay.  There is no minimum / maximum working / furlough split required (aside from the cap on what can be paid). Employees are required to pay the full employer’s NIC and pension cost.

For employees that were employed & on the payroll on 23 September 2020 and who were made redundant or stopped working afterwards can be reemployed and claimed for by their previous employees – the employer must have made an PAYE RTI submission between 20 March 2020 and 23 September 2020 for earnings to this employee to qualify.

In all cases the employer must have confirmed in writing to their employee that they have been furloughed or flexibly furloughed.

  • The job retention bonus will no longer be paid in February 2021 – a retention incentive may be available, but no details have been provided as to what format this will take.
  • For business required to close in England, grants are available based on the rateable value of up to £3k per month if the rateable value is over £51k.
  • The 100% business rates holiday for 12 months has been extended to cover all retail, hospitality and leisure businesses in England.
  • Small business recovery grant of £1,000 to £3,000 – this is available to the ‘Visitor economy (tourism) sector’ located in Shropshire, Telford & Wrekin or Herefordshire that have been trading for 12 months or more – they must be reliant on visitors and be able to demonstrate that COVID-19 has adversely affected their business. The business must employ less than 10 employees (full time equivalent) – for details of how to apply go to https://marches-sbrg.co.uk.
  • Mortgage holidays have been extended & borrowers can still apply for a 6 month payment holiday.
  • Self-employment income support scheme has been increased to enable claims of 80% of average trading profits for November to January 2021 capped at £7,500 and a further claim for Feb – April 2021 (the rate has yet to be confirmed) – the claim window opens on 30 November 2020.

If you need any further information, on any of the above or any other matters affecting your business, please do get in touch.

Our office remains open so you can call on 01743 249 992 and speak to us, or send us an email to enquiries@cbslgroup.com and we will get back to you.