Furlough Scheme Cut-Off Date Extended to 19 March

Robert has welcomed news that the Government’s Coronavirus Job Retention (Furlough) Scheme has been extended to allow more people to be covered.

Under the scheme announced by Chancellor Rishi Sunak last month, employers can claim a grant covering 80% of the wages for a furloughed employee, subject to a cap of £2,500 a month.

To qualify and to protect against fraudulent claims, individuals originally had to be employed on 28 February 2020.

However, following a review of the delivery system and to ensure the scheme helps as many people as possible, new guidance published today has confirmed the eligibility date has been extended to 19 March 2020 – the day before the scheme was announced.

Commenting, Robert said:

“I have been contacted by a number of local employees concerned that they were not eligible for the Government’s furlough scheme due to starting work after the original deadline.”

“Both myself and colleagues across Parliament have been rigorously raising these concerns with the Treasury.”

“I am delighted that our Chancellor has listened and extended the scheme. This will mean financial security for many more employees at this difficult time.”

“I will continue to do all I can to ensure the voices of people and businesses in West Oxfordshire are heard.”

Employers can claim for furloughed employees that were employed and on their PAYE payroll on or before 19 March 2020. This means that the employee must have been notified to HMRC through an RTI submission notifying payment in respect of that employee on or before 19 March 2020.

This change makes the scheme more generous while keeping the substantial fraud risks under control and is expected to benefit over 200,000 employees.

HMRC have been working at pace to delivering the scheme, which is due to be fully operational next week.