I’m writing to update you with the latest information on the Coronavirus Job Retention Scheme and the VAT Deferral New Payment Scheme – including actions you or your clients might need to take.
Coronavirus Job Retention Scheme (CJRS)
The CJRS has been extended to 31 March 2021 for all parts of the UK. From 1 November, the UK Government will pay 80% of employees’ usual wages for the hours not worked, up to a cap of £2,500 per month. The government will review the terms of the scheme in January.
Employers and their employees do not need to have benefited from the scheme before to claim for periods from 1 November.
What you or your clients need to do now
- Submit any claims for periods up to 31 October on or before 30 November – they will not be accepted after this date. Claims are subject to eligibility and the rules in force at the time.
- Submit any claims for November, no later than 14 December. You can claim before, during or after you process your payroll as long as your claim is submitted by the deadline.
- Keep any records that support the amount of CJRS grant you claim, in case HMRC needs to check them. You can view, print or download copies of your previously submitted claims by logging onto your CJRS service on GOV.UK.
For claim periods from 1 December, employers cannot claim CJRS grants for any days that their employee is serving a contractual or statutory notice period, including notice of retirement or resignation.
You or your clients can check if you’re eligible, and work out how much you can claim using our CJRS calculator and examples, by searching ‘Job Retention Scheme’ on GOV.UK.
There are now monthly deadlines for claims.Claims for periods starting on or after 1 November must be submitted within 14 calendar days after the month they relate to, unless this falls on a weekend in which case the deadline is the next weekday. The deadline to make claims for employees furloughed in November is Monday 14 December.
Publishing employers’ information
HMRC will publish the names, an indication of the value of claims and Company Registration Numbers of employers who make CJRS claims for periods from December onwards. We’ll write to you again with details of when this information will be published.
For claim periods from December, employees will also be able to check if their employer has made a CJRS claim on their behalf through their online Personal Tax Account. To set up a Personal Tax Account go to GOV.UK and search ‘Personal Tax Account: sign in or set up’.
VAT Deferral New Payment Scheme
Businesses who deferred VAT due from 20 March to 30 June 2020 will now have the option to pay in smaller payments over a longer period. Instead of paying the full amount by the end of March 2021, businesses can make up to 11 smaller monthly payments, interest free. All instalments must be paid by the end of March 2022. They will need to opt-in to the scheme, and for those who do, this means that their deferred VAT liabilities do not need to be paid by the end of March 2021.
The VAT Deferral New Payment Scheme will require a Direct Debit to be set up as part of the digital opt-in process and this must be done by the authorised bank account holder. Because of that, HMRC is unable to provide an agent service for the scheme. We will let you know the details of the VAT Deferral New Payment Scheme and its operation as soon as we can to allow you to appropriately advise and support your clients before and during the opt-in process. Businesses that can pay their deferred VAT should still do so by 31 March 2021.
You can find further information on GOV.UK by searching ‘Pay VAT deferred due to coronavirus’.
Where you can get further support
Thousands of people have joined and benefited from our live webinars which now offer more support on changes to CJRS and how they affect you or your clients. To book online, or to view updated guidance, go to GOV.UK and search ‘help and support if your business if affected by coronavirus’.
There’s also a helpful CJRS step-by-step guide on GOV.UK, summarising the latest information and the steps you or your clients need to take to make a claim – you can find this by searching ‘step by step guide’.
Our phone lines and webchat remain very busy, so the quickest way to find the support you need is on GOV.UK. This will leave our phone lines and webchat service open for those who need them most.
Protect yourself from scams
Stay vigilant about scams, which may mimic government messages as a way of appearing authentic. Search ‘scams’ on GOV.UK for information on how to recognise genuine HMRC contact. You can forward suspicious emails claiming to be from HMRC to firstname.lastname@example.org and texts to 60599.
Access the National Cyber Security Centre’s new guide on how to stay secure online and protect yourself or your business against cyber crime by searching ‘Cyber Aware’ on GOV.UK.
I hope this information helps you and your business, and we’ll continue to keep you updated.
Chief Executive and First Permanent Secretary – HMRC