The Job Retention Bonus is a one-off payment to employers of £1,000 for every employee who they previously claimed for under the Coronavirus Job Retention scheme, and who remains continuously employed through to 31 January 2021. Employees must have earned at least £520 a month on average between the 1 November 2020 and 31 January 2021. Employers will be able to claim the Bonus after they have filed PAYE for January. Payments will be made to employers from February 2021.
The Scheme formed part of the Chancellor Rishi Sunak ‘Plan for Jobs’. All employers are eligible for the scheme including recruitment agencies and umbrella companies.
Employers should ensure that they have:
- complied with their obligations to pay and file PAYE accurately and on time under the Real Time Information (RTI) reporting system for all employees
- maintained enrolment for PAYE online
- a UK bank account
HMRC will withhold payment of the Job Retention Bonus where it believes there is a risk that Coronavirus Job Retention Scheme claims may have been fraudulently claimed or inflated, until the enquiry is completed.
Employers can claim the Job Retention Bonus for all employees who meet the above criteria, including office holders, company directors and agency workers, including those employed by umbrella companies. The above criteria must be met regardless of the frequency of the employee’s pay periods, their hours worked and rate of pay.
How employers can claim the Job Retention Bonus
From February 2021, employers will be able to claim the Job Retention Bonus through GOV.UK. More detail about this process will be published in guidance by the end of September 2020.
Employers should ensure that their employee records are up-to-date, including accurately reporting their employee’s details and wages on the Full Payment Submission (FPS) through the Real Time Information (RTI) reporting system. Employers should also make sure all of their Coronavirus Job Retention Scheme claims have been accurately submitted and any necessary amendments have been notified to HMRC.