Today’s the day! Flexible Furlough is here…

Coronavirus, Payroll, Planning,

Today’s the day! Flexible Furlough is now open, so you can start to bring back your team on your terms. 

But what can you do, what can’t you do, and what do you need to be careful of? It’s all here for you…

A RECAP…

From today. 1st July, the new Flexible Furlough scheme is live. As we’ve mentioned before, this is the start of the ‘winding down’ of the Coronavirus Job Retention scheme, or Furlough Scheme, where the Government support slowly reduces between now and October.

WHO CAN YOU CLAIM FOR AND WHEN?

  • From today, 1st July 2020, business owners can ‘part-furlough’ their employees, so that they can start bringing them back to work part-time, given there may not be enough work in the business for them to come back full time.
  • Furloughed employees can be brought back to work for any amount of time and any shift pattern, while the employer can still claim 80% of the salary for the hours not worked, as has been the case previously. The same limits to the upper limits apply.
  • Employers can claim the furlough grant for the hours your employees don’t work, compared to the hours they would’ve normally worked in that period.
  • Employers can continue to choose to top-up employee wages above the 80% total and £2,500 cap for the hours not worked, at their own expense.
  • Employees can be kept on full furlough if there is no work for them to come back to.
  • For payroll periods on or after 1st July, you can only claim for a maximum number of employees that you claimed for perviously. So if the most employees you had on furlough up to 30th June was 8, the most you can claim for from today is also 8.
  • The first time you can claim for July furloughed days is 1st July; you can’t claim for periods in July before this date.
  • You cannot furlough anyone who hadn’t completed a full, three-week furlough period by 30th June. You can however put someone BACK onto furlough if they had fulfilled this criteria but you now need to furlough them again.
  • We’ve mentioned before that HMRC are likely to check claims through the scheme later. Please be sure to keep careful records of the arrangements you make with your employees and of any claims you make.

CALCULATING FLEXIBLE FURLOUGH

This is quite a complicated process and will require careful record keeping.

If you use an external payroll provider to process your payroll and submit your claim, it’s likely that they will want extra information from you this month, and want it as early as possible.

Please be prepared to provide them with your information as early as you can so that you’re able to make payments in good time.

If you calculate your own payroll, you can find guidance around how to do this on the gov.uk website here.

WHAT CHANGES ARE COMING TO THE CLAIMABLE AMOUNTS?

  • The amounts you can claim remain unchanged in July.
  • From 1st August 2020, you can no longer claim employers’ National Insurance or employers’ pension contributions.
  • From 1st September 2020, the percentage that you can claim reduces from 80% to 70%, with a cap of £2,187.50.
  • From 1st October 2020, the percentage that you can claim reduces to 60%, with a cap of £1,875.00.
  • The Furlough scheme ends on the 31st October 2020.

Whilst we don’t process payrolls, we’re happy to help you work out where you stand with these changes we can, so please get in touch if you’re unsure. Similarly, whilst we’re not HR advisors, if you’re unsure of whether you are working within the amended rules and want to double check, please ask!