The new Job Support Scheme

28 October 2020

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The Government's new Job Support Scheme (JSS) will open on 1 November 2020 and run for six months, replacing the existing furlough scheme.

The scheme will provide grants to businesses impacted by Covid-19 and aims to protect jobs by keeping workers in employment, while recognising it might not be possible for businesses to have all staff return to normal working hours.

How does it work?

Employees must work a minimum of 33% of their normal hours and their employer must continue to pay them for those hours worked.

The cost of hours not worked is then split between the employer, the Government and the employee, through wage reduction.

This means:

  • Your workplace clients will pay employees for the hours they work (a minimum of 33% of their normal hours/pay)
  • Your workplace clients will also pay them for one third of the hours not worked (up to 22% of their normal hours/pay)
  • The Government will pay a third of the hours not worked (up to 22% of  the employee's normal hours/pay). This amount is capped at £697.92 per month.
  • Employees will receive their normal contracted pay for the hours they work.
  • They’ll also receive up to two-thirds of their usual pay for the hours they don’t work.

So, employees who work the minimum 33% of their normal working hours will receive no less than 78% of their normal pay, and any additional hours worked by the employee will offset this reduction.

The scheme offers your workplace clients the flexibility to change employee working hours each month - they can cycle employees on and off the scheme, they can rotate staff members if desired.

However, your workplace clients will need to agree new working arrangements with employees, update employment contracts and notify each employee in writing. HMRC may request this in future.

Employer pension contributions

Automatic enrolment duties will continue to apply as normal, and employers will need to continue paying employer pension contributions based on the lower salary employees will receive, including the amount paid by the Government.

Our online dashboard will notify your workplace clients of any upcoming re-enrolment and re-declaration duties, helping them stay on track.

Who can apply?

If your workplace clients aren't able to have all their employees return to their normal working hours, they can apply for the JSS grant, as long as they have a UK bank account and UK PAYE scheme.

If their business is a larger business, they'll have to meet a financial assessment test, showing that turnover is lower than it was before Covid-19. If it’s small or medium sized, this won’t be required.

Who can employers claim for?

Your workplace clients can claim for any employees added to their payroll on or before 23 September 2020.

They can make a claim online by visiting the Government website at gov.co.uk from December 2020.

Grants will be paid in arrears, on a monthly basis, after payment to the employee has been made and reported to HMRC.

This website is intended for financial advisers only and shouldn't be relied upon by any other person. If you are not an adviser please visit royallondon.com.

The Royal London Mutual Insurance Society Limited is authorised by the Prudential Regulation Authority and regulated by the Financial Conduct Authority and the Prudential Regulation Authority. The firm is on the Financial Services Register, registration number 117672. It provides life assurance and pensions. Registered in England and Wales number 99064. Registered office: 55 Gracechurch Street, London, EC3V 0RL.