Extension to the Coronavirus Job Support Scheme
As the Government is implementing local lockdowns and requiring pubs and restaurants to close in the latest stage of the war against Covid-19, calls for further financial support for affected businesses have been growing in volume.
Chancellor Rishi Sunak has now responded by announcing earlier today his proposals to extend the support offered by the Coronavirus Job Support Scheme (JSS) (once the furlough scheme closes on 31 October 2020) for those businesses that will be legally required to close.
At this stage we do not have much detail, but what we know so far is:
- If a business is required to close as part of a local or national lockdown and its staff cannot work at all for one week or more, the government will pay two thirds of employees’ salaries, up to £2,100 a month.
- Eligible employers will not be required to contribute towards wages, only National Insurance Contributions and pension contributions.
- Employers can only claim the grant whilst subject to restrictions and only if their employees have been off work for a minimum of seven consecutive days.
- The expanded JSS is UK-wide, will begin on 1 November and will be open for six months but reviewed in January.
- Cash grants for businesses required to close in local lockdowns will also be increased to up to £3,000 per month.
- The new JSS will sit alongside the original JSS and the £1,000 Job Retention Bonus.
The Chancellor said:
“The expansion of the Job Support Scheme will provide a safety net for businesses across the UK who are required to temporarily close their doors, giving them the right support at the right time.”
Whist we await further guidance, the Chancellor’s announcement will come as a relief to many, especially those in the hospitality sector, who are facing a very uncertain winter.