Around two-thirds of companies have furloughed some portion of their workforce, according to research by the British Chambers of Commerce.
The opening of the scheme, accessible to all UK businesses, is an important milestone for firms impacted by the spread of Covid-19.
In order to apply, employees must have been designated as ‘furloughed’ for a minimum of three weeks and have been on the company’s payroll on or before 19 March 2020.
Employers must be enrolled for PAYE. The scheme has been set up to run for at least 3 months starting from 1 March.
If an employee was made redundant or stopped working for their employer prior to 19 March 2020 but was employed as of 28 February 2020 and was on the payroll they can also qualify for the scheme if their employer has re-employed them and put them on furlough.
What do I need to make a claim?
To claim, the employer will need:
• Employer PAYE reference number
• the number of employees being furloughed
• National Insurance numbers for the furloughed employees
• Names of the furloughed employees
• Payroll/employee number for the furloughed employees (optional)
• Self-assessment unique taxpayer reference or corporation tax unique taxpayer reference or company registration number
• the claim period (start and end date)
• the amount claimed (per the minimum length of furloughing of 3 consecutive weeks)
• bank account number and sort code
• contact name and phone number
Employers will need to calculate the amount being claimed and HMRC will retain the right to retrospectively audit all aspects of any claim.
Before you make a claim:
- please read all the available guidance on GOV.UK before you apply
- gather all the information and the precise calculations you need before you start your application
- you can find out more in the calculation guidance where you can access a claim calculator – this will allow you to check your claim for most employees who are paid the same amount each pay period
- access HMRC's simple step-by-step guide for additional help.
After you’ve made a claim:
- keep a note or a print-out of your claim reference number – you won’t receive a confirmation SMS or email
- retain all records and calculations for your claims, in case we need to contact you about them
- expect to receive the funds six working days after you apply, provided your claim matches records that HMRC hold for your PAYE scheme
- to receive payment by 30 April, you will need to complete an application by 22 April
For fewer than 100 furloughed staff employers will be asked to enter details of each employee being claimed for directly into the system including their name, NI number, claim period and claim amount. We wish you well at this challenging time.