On 31 July, the Government released an outline paper with more detailed guidance on the Job Retention Bonus announced by the Chancellor as part of the ‘Plan for Jobs’ on 8 July. The Job Retention Bonus is designed to provide additional support to employers who keep on their furloughed employees after the Coronavirus Job Retention Scheme (CJRS) ends on 31 October 2020.

The Job Retention Bonus is a taxable one-off payment to employers of £1,000 for every employee who they previously claimed for under the CJRS, and who remains continuously employed through to 31 January 2021.

Employers will be able to claim the Job Retention Bonus after they have filed PAYE for January.

Employers will be able to claim for employees who:

  • were furloughed and had a CJRS claim submitted for them that meets all relevant criteria of the scheme
  • have been continuously employed by the employer from the time of the employer’s most recent claim for that employee until at least 31 January 2021
  • have been paid an average of at least £520 a month between 1 November 2020 and 31 January 2021 (a total of at least £1,560 across the 3 months). The employee does not have to be paid £520 in each month, but must have received some earnings in each of the three calendar months that have been paid and reported to HMRC via RTI;
  • have up-to-date RTI records for the period to the end of January.

Employers can claim the Job Retention Bonus for all employees who meet the above criteria, including office holders, company directors and agency workers, including those employed by umbrella companies. The above criteria must be met regardless of the frequency of the employee’s pay periods, their hours worked and rate of pay.

In order to be eligible employees must not be serving a contractual or statutory notice period that started before 1 February 2021.

Where employees have TUPE transferred to a new employer, the new employer may be eligible to claim the Job Retention Bonus in respect of those employees provided the transferred employees have been furloughed and claimed for under the CJRS by the new employer following a transfer taking place on or before 31 October 2020 (when the CJRS comes to an end).

It is expected that further and more detailed guidance will be published in September 2020.

If you have any queries please contact Stephen McConnell, Business Services Partner Email: stephenmcconnell@bakertillymm.co.uk Tel: 028 9032 3466.