COVID-19 support for small business employers – The Coronavirus Job Retention Scheme (CJRS)

The Government has announced a number of initiatives to help employers through the Coronavirus outbreak. Whilst there are certainly gaps, these measures will go some way to managing the economic pressures of the pandemic and avoid the mass unemployment we’re now seeing reported in the US.

We have prepared a series of articles to explain what the schemes mean to contractors freelancers and small businesses, extracting the information that’s most relevant to you. Here we look at the Coronavirus Job Retention Scheme which is applicable to contractors and directors of small businesses with employees, looking at who can access the scheme and how. 

You can read our article for businesses with no additional employees here.

What is the Coronavirus Job Retention Scheme (CJRS) and how do you access it?

The Coronavirus Job Retention Scheme (CJRS) aims to help employers avoid the need to make their staff redundant by offering temporary leave, also known as ‘furloughing’.

What the CJRS scheme allows you to do is claim a Government grant of 80% of a furloughed employee’s usual monthly wages, up to a maximum of £2,500 per month. The grant is subject to tax and National Insurance in the usual way, though the Employers’ National Insurance and any mandatory employers’ pension contributions elements can also be claimed back, if applicable.

How grants are processed?

Claims for the grant will need to be made online when the system becomes available towards the end of April. When preparing to make your claim, please contact us for advice and support to ensure you are claiming the correct amount. CJRS payments should be included when calculating your income tax and corporation tax profits.

Before you make your claim you will need the following to hand:

Your name, phone number, and ePAYE reference number.

The number of employees being furloughed.

The claim period & the amount claimed.

Your bank account number and sort code – HMRC will reimburse you directly.

You need to be aware that anyone who is furloughed cannot undertake any work during the furloughed period, though they can participate in training.

The furlough rules

The CJRS scheme is available to employees furloughed for March, April and May but may be extended if necessary.

You need to be aware that anyone who is furloughed cannot undertake any work during the furloughed period, though they can participate in training.

You can read the complete guidance on the Coronavirus Job Retention Scheme here but if you have any questions about how it relates to your specific circumstances, please don’t hesitate to get in touch.
You may also find it helpful to read our guidance on the support available to small businesses with no employees, as well as the various measures available to help ease businesses cashflow .

Posted by Editorial