Coronavirus update – Government support for businesses

In an unprecedented move, Chancellor Rishi Sunak promised support to assist all UK employers.

Last Friday, the Government pledged to reimburse 80% of all UK employer’s worker’s salary (up to a cap of £2,500) for those employees that would otherwise have been made redundant, with the introduction of the Coronavirus Job Retention Scheme.

Briony McDermott, employment solicitor at Wake Smith, looks at the initiative.

She said: “Details of how to access the scheme are currently in their infancy, however it is anticipated that businesses will need to:

  • Identify affected employees as ‘furloughed workers,’ and notify the employees of this change. As this is a change in status, it is likely that this will require consultation with affected employees, however if the alternative is that the employee may be made redundant it is likely that agreement can be reached
  • provide information to HMRC about the employees that have been furloughed and their earnings through a new online portal (The specific details required are yet to be confirmed by HMRC, however it is anticipated that this information should be confirmed imminently)

“This support is in addition to the measures previously announced such as the Coronavirus Business Interruption Loan which goes live today, 23 March.

“In order to access this you should talk to your bank as soon as possible and discuss your business plan with them.”

For queries on employment law issues contact Briony McDermott at 

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