POSTED: August 12 2020
COVID-19 Financial Update: Number 6

COVID-19 Financial Update: Number 6

In the sixth of our updates we enclosed information on the Job Retention Bonus scheme (JRB), including details on how to check if you are eligible and what you need to do now, to get ready to claim.

Job Retention Bonus

Employers will be able to claim a one-off payment of £1,000 for every employee they have previously received a grant for under the Coronavirus Job Retention Scheme (CJRS) and who has remained continuously employed through to the end of January 2021.

To be eligible, the employee must have received earnings in November, December and January, and must have been paid an average of at least £520 per month, and a total of at least £1,560 across the three months.

As the employer you will be able to claim the bonus after you have filed PAYE information for January 2021. The bonus will then be paid from February 2021. More detailed guidance, including how employers can claim the bonus online will be made available by HMRC at the end of September.

What you need to do now

If you intend to claim the Job Retention Bonus, you must:

  • Ensure all employee records are up to date;
  • Accurately report employees’ details and wages on the Full Payment Submission (FPS) through the Real Time Information (RTI) reporting system (this is something advo payroll already does for our clients);
  • Make sure all of your CJRS claims have been accurately submitted and you have told HMRC about any changes needed (for example if you’ve received too much or too little).

Reminder of changes to CJRS: From 1 August 2020 CJRS will continue to provide grants for furloughed employees but no longer funds employers’ National Insurance (NI) and pensions contributions. Employers now have to make these payments from their own resources for all employees, whether furloughed or not.

Further guidance and live webinars offering more support on changes to the scheme and how they impact you are available to book online – go to GOV.UK and search ‘help and support if your business is affected by coronavirus’.

Making sure your data is right: It’s important that you provide the data HMRC need to process your claim. Otherwise your grant may be at risk or delayed.

National Insurance numbers: Employers need to provide a National Insurance (NI) number for all employees as part of their CJRS claim. The only exception is in the very limited circumstances where an employee genuinely does not have a NI, for example if they are under 16 years old.

If you are claiming for an employee whose NI you don’t currently know, you can check their number by searching GOV.UK for ‘Check a National Insurance Number using basic PAYE Tool’.

If you have claimed too much in error?: If you have claimed too much for a CJRS grant and have not repaid it, you must notify HMRC and repay the money by the latest of whichever date applies below:

  • 90 days after receiving the CJRS money you’re not entitled to;
  • 90 days from when circumstances changed so that you were no longer entitled to keep the CJRS grant;
  • 20 October 2020 if you received CJRS money you’re not entitled to, or if your circumstances changed on or before 22 July 2020.

If you do not do this, you may have to pay a penalty.

How to let HMRC know about claiming too much: If you have received more than you are entitled to, you can let HMRC know as part of your next online claim without needing to call them – HMRC’s system will prompt you to add details, if you have received too much. For more information, search for ‘if you claim too much or not enough from the Coronavirus Job Retention Scheme’ on GOV.UK.

You can view further details on the Job Retention Bonus on GOV.UK here.

We are here to help. If you are an advo client and need guidance on your payroll or payroll related queries included in the enclosed update then please get in touch with the team on