COVID19 Job Retention Scheme – What do we know now?

COVID19 Job Retention Scheme – What do we know now?


To date, the guidance on the Government’s COVI19 job retention scheme has been somewhat unclear, with many of us left with unanswered questions. However, the guidance does seem to be providing more clarity as the days go on and an update was published at the weekend. So, here is what we know now:



Can employees start a new job when on furlough from their current employer?


Yes – the new guidance makes it clear that this is permitted, providing that the current employer agrees to the employee holding secondary employment as they would grant in the normal way.



As an employer, can I reclaim commission payments from HMRC under this scheme?


Yes – you are able to reclaim 80% of the contractual commission back on top of basic salary. This is applicable to the commission earned from past sales, as furloughed employees cannot be completing new sales and thus earning commission during this period.



As an employer, can I claim back non-monetary benefits?


No – you are not able to claim for any non-monetary payments such as the value of a car or private medical insurance.



I’m a Director, can I be furloughed?


Yes – the guidance has now confirmed that Company directors can be furloughed, providing that they perform only their statutory duties but not any other work for the Company.



Can we have breaks in the furlough period?


Yes – you can furlough employees and then bring them back to work, then re-furlough where necessary. This is, of course, subject to each furlough period lasting a minimum of 3 weeks each time.



Do we need to notify employees in writing of their furlough status?


Yes – previous guidance did not stipulate that this needed to be in writing but it has now been confirmed that this is a requirement. Employers must also retain a record of that written notification for a period of 5 years.


If you would like any further guidance on COVID19 HR issues, please contact us using our social below.


For further guidance on the ‘Job Retention Scheme’ please visit –



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