What is the Job Support Scheme?

The Job Support Scheme was due to open on 1 November 2020, following the expected closure of the Coronavirus Job Retention Scheme on 31 October 2020. However, the Government has extended the Coronavirus Job Retention Scheme to remain open until 30 September 2021. While the Government initially said that the Job Support Scheme had been "postponed", there are no confirmed plans to bring it into force.

Under the Job Support Scheme as previously announced, the Government would contribute towards the wage costs of employees where businesses are affected by coronavirus (COVID-19) restrictions, with the aim of avoiding redundancies where jobs are viable in the long term.

The Government had announced two parts to the Job Support Scheme:

  • One part of the scheme, referred to by the Government as "JSS Open", was for businesses that are facing lower demand because of coronavirus but that are able to stay open, with employees working reduced hours.
  • The other part, referred to by the Government as "JSS Closed", was for businesses that are legally required to close under local or national coronavirus restrictions.

Employers would not be able to make employees redundant or give them notice of redundancy while claiming for them under the Job Support Scheme.