April 15, 2020

5 updates on Furlough

This post was written by: Ilinca Mardarescu

Regular updates and new details on the Job Retention Scheme (aka Furlough) are published on an almost daily basis by HMRC currently.  

Here are some of the latest surprising, and not so surprising, developments:

  1. The good news is that the HMRC portal is now working and in the testing stage.  HMRC have stated this will be open and running properly on 20th April. They have also clarified that they expect the first payments (once they have been processed) to be paid by the end of this month.
  2. It has been clarified that directors can be Furloughed, and would be allowed to continue with any statutory duties, as long as they are not carrying out normal work for the Company.
  3. Clarification has similarly been given as to what apprentices on Furlough can do.  Essentially, they are allowed to continue training/learning but cannot provide a service or generate revenue for the company they work for.
  4. The situation regarding TUPE’d employees has been clarified.  Essentially, any employees who TUPE’d across to a new employer after 28th February will be eligible to be Furloughed.  Previously, HMRC had stated this would not be the case so this is no doubt a surprising, and welcome, clarification for some.
  5. Lastly, a change to previously published guidance is that HMRC has clarified that employers can reclaim 80% of fees.  No detailed guidance has been published as to what the term fees encompasses but as HMRC had previously stated employers would not be able to reclaim fees, the change is no doubt welcome in any event.

If you’re keen to implement a furlough, or have further questions if you have been placed on furlough. Please don’t hesitate to contact our Head of Employment Law, Ilinca Mardarescu.