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1 November 2020

Lockdown and Extension of Furlough Scheme

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Posted by: Katy Mcminn


Due to the government announcing a further lockdown, the furlough scheme has been extended which means the JSS scheme is being suspended.  

Employees already in the scheme won’t notice any difference in their pay packet, but the scheme has become more generous for employers.  Employees not currently furloughed can now be put in this scheme as long as they were employed as at 30 October 2020.

In recent months, employers have had to top up furloughed wages by 20%, with the state paying 60%. Now, the government will put in the full 80%, with the employer only covering pension and national insurance contributions.

Can I still put employees into the JSS scheme?

No. This scheme is now postponed due to national lockdown being announced and the Furlough scheme being extended.

What has changed about the extended Furlough scheme?

Employers have been paying some of the contribution towards an employee getting 80% salary or £2,500. Whichever is greater. In November this will revert to the government paying 80% or a grant of £2500 and the employer covering pension and national insurance contributions. 

If an employer has given notice to an employee to make them redundant can this be retracted?

Yes. You can instead place them on furlough until further notice. However you would need to confirm this change in writing and obtain their agreement.  

Who is eligible to be furloughed?

Employees  must have been on the payroll by 30 October 2020, but they don’t need to have been furloughed before to be included now. The government is updating the system. Employers can  submit their wage claim to the government, and be refunded afterwards. Going forward they will be paid upfront to cover the cost.

When will the JSS scheme kick in?

Currently we expect the JSS scheme to kick in once we are out of lockdown in December 2020.  As before, Regions will then be classed into tiers based on their coronavirus risk level, and then the new JSS scheme will open.

We will keep this Q&A updated.