Furlough pay: Is coronavirus job retention scheme open? How to claim

The coronavirus job retention scheme is one of the landmark financial relief measures brought in by Chancellor Rishi Sunak in March. The scheme allows an employee to be furloughed, meaning they will remain on the company payroll but will not be able to work for their employer. During this time the Government will pay 80 percent of the employee’s wage up to £2,500 a month.

Is the coronavirus job retention scheme open?

The coronavirus job retention scheme is now open for applications.

UK employers looking to furlough staff can now make a claim to the scheme online.

Since the scheme was announced in March, HMRC has been working tirelessly to get applications for the scheme up and running.


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HMRC launched the dedicated portal for the scheme on Monday morning, 10 days before it was scheduled to go live.

Chancellor Rishi Sunak said: “Our unprecedented Job Retention Scheme will protect millions of jobs across the country and is now up and running.

“It’s vital that our economy gets up and running again as soon as it’s safe – and this scheme will allow that to happen.”

The portal system can process up to 450,000 applications an hour.

How do I claim for coronavirus job retention scheme?

The Government website is now taking applications for the coronavirus job retention scheme HERE.

Before you apply, you will need to check whether you are eligible to make a claim.

You will also need to work out how much you need to claim for.


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To make a claim, you will need:

  • to be registered for PAYE online
  • your UK bank account number and sort code
  • your employer PAYE scheme reference number
  • the number of employees being furloughed
  • each employee’s National Insurance number
  • each employee’s payroll or employee number
  • the start date and end date of the claim
  • the full amount you’re claiming for including employer National Insurance contributions and employer minimum pension contributions
  • your phone number

You also need to provide either:

  • your Corporation Tax unique taxpayer reference
  • your Self Assessment unique taxpayer reference
  • your company registration number

When will employers be paid?

Due to the current financial climate, many companies urgently require funds to pay employees in time for their April payday.

The Treasury aims for all payments under the scheme to be in an employer’s bank account within six working days.

The Government stated up to 5,000 staff will be working to process the claims.

However HMRC is incredibly busy at the moment, so are asking you only contact them if your claim hasn’t been paid more than 10 working days after you applied.

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