Following the new legislation on Thursday and the confirmation that employees dismissed after being furloughed will need to be paid termination payments based on normal rather than reduced salary, on Friday HMRC updated their guidance in relation to the Job Retention Bonus.
It confirms that employers will be entitled to receive the £1000 bonus in respect of each employee who has been furloughed and has remained continuously employed as at 31 January 2021. This extends to recruitment agencies and umbrella companies too.
The conditions are that the employee earns at least £520 a month on average between 1 November 2020 and 31 January 2021 and that they have not been given notice as at 31 January 2021. The reference is to ‘average’ pay so the employee does not have to receive £520 every month as long as they have received some money each month and have been paid a total of at least £1,560 across the 3 months.
In relation to employees who have transferred, the new employer may be eligible to claim in respect of these employees if either TUPE applied, the PAYE business succession rules applied or there was a business transfer where TUPE would have applied if the company had not been in compulsory liquidation. To be eligible for the bonus the transferred employees must have been furloughed and successfully claimed for under the CJRS by the new employer. It follows that an employer will not be eligible for the Job Retention Bonus payment in respect of any employee transferred after 31 October 2020.
Finally, it advises that employers who intend to claim will need to ensure that they have accurately reported their employee’s details and wages through the Real Time Information (RTI) reporting system. These RTI records must be up to date for the period to the end of January in order for a claim to be made and any amendments will need to have been reported to HMRC.
A full guide to the bonus scheme will be published in September.