22nd October 2020

Coronavirus: Chancellor enhances the Job Support Scheme

Government extends support for businesses and staff during pandemic.

Government extends support for businesses and staff during pandemic.

Rishi Sunak has announced additional Government support for companies and workers affected by Covid restrictions by making further changes to the Job Support Scheme (JSS), which is due to commence on 1 November 2020 and run for a period of six months. The changes build on measures announced by the chancellor earlier this month.

The two major changes to the scheme are:

  1. To be eligible, employees must now work a minimum of 20% of their hours (which has been reduced from the original requirement of 33%). This means that where an employee works one day in a five-day week, they will now be eligible.
  2. Employers need to contribute 5% of wages for unworked hours (which has been reduced from 33%). The Government will now pick up 61.67% (up to a maximum of £1,541.75) so that employees still receive two-thirds of their pay for unworked hours.

The following additional support measures have also been announced:

  1. A new grant scheme for businesses impacted in high alert areas. Even if businesses are not legally required to close their premises, they may be eligible to receive direct cash grants. Local authorities will have the discretion to decide how to distribute the grants. Grants will be available to businesses in hospitality, accommodation and leisure. Businesses can receive up to £2,100 for every month in which tier two restrictions apply and up to £3,000 per month if tier three restrictions apply.
  2. Individuals who are self-employed will now be able to access grants of up to £3,750. This is more than double the previous grant available for the self-employed.

Please note: Nothing in this article constitutes legal advice and we are not liable for any reliance on the information provided. This is a rapidly changing subject, and whilst correct at the time of writing, circumstances may have changed since publication. Please refer to Gov.uk for up-to-date advice on the Government’s response to this issue.

To find out more about anything covered in this article, or to discuss the potential impact of COVID-19 on your business, please contact Kerrie Hunt or another member of Thrings’ Employment and Immigration team.


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