Government widens eligibility for job retention scheme

The government has widened the eligibility criteria for furloughed employees who need to access the Coronavirus Job Retention Scheme by pushing back a key date.

Under the Coronavirus Job Retention Scheme, businesses can apply for government grants for employees' salaries up to the lower of 80% of an employee's regular wage, or £2,500 per month for three months from 1 March.

The scheme could run for longer if the social restrictions to help halt the coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic remain in place.

In order to be eligible, employees previously needed to be on an employer's Pay as You Earn (PAYE) payroll on or before 28 February 2020. This date has now been pushed back to 19 March 2020, the day before Chancellor Rishi Sunak first announced the scheme.

Individuals employed and on the payroll as of 28 February 2020, but who were made redundant or stopped working for their employer prior to 19 March 2020, can also qualify for the scheme if their employer re-employs them and puts them on furlough.

Further details on the Coronavirus Job Retention Scheme can be found here.

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