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Coronavirus Job Retention Scheme/Furlough leave

Sheila Attwood Editor's message: HR are quickly having to familiarise themselves with the Coronavirus Job Retention Scheme, part of a package of support for businesses affected by the coronavirus (COVID-19) crisis.

The scheme is intended to support employers to continue paying employees who would otherwise be made redundant or put on an unpaid period of lay-off as a result of the coronavirus crisis. It is open to all employers with a PAYE scheme, including public-sector employers and charities.

Under the scheme, if a worker is designated as a "furloughed worker" during the coronavirus outbreak, a grant will be available from HM Revenue and Customs (HMRC) to reimburse you for 80% of the wage costs relating to the worker, up to a maximum of £2,500 per month. Payments can be backdated to 1 March 2020. The worker should not perform any work for you while on "furlough leave".

The scheme will initially be open for four months, until the end of June 2020. The Government opened the online service you will use to claim under the scheme on 20 April 2020.

Sheila Attwood, managing editor, pay and HR practice

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HR and legal information and guidance relating to the Coronavirus Job Retention Scheme/Furlough leave.