The Chancellor today announced extensions to the Jobs Support Scheme (JSS) to cover 2/3rds of staff wages up to a cap of £2,100 per month and an increase in cash grants to a maximum of £3,000 per month. Both expansions will apply to businesses legally required to close due to local lockdown restrictions.
The new expansions come two weeks after the Jobs Support Scheme was first announced, and ahead of the expected tightening of local lockdown restrictions.
While the new scheme does not go as far as the Coronavirus Job Retention Scheme, it is a marked improvement on the JSS announced at the end of September, but only applies to businesses legally required to close due to local lockdown measures.
- The previous JSS will continue to apply for businesses not forced to close where employees have to work a minimum of 1/3rd of normal working hours;
- Employers will still be required to pay the pension and national insurance costs;
- Extensions include businesses asked to operate on a collection only or delivery only basis;
- Employers must be instructed to and cease work for a minimum of seven consecutive (or calendar) days.
These measures will sit alongside the £1,000 Job Retention Bonus, which encourages employers to keep employees on payroll.
Businesses will need to consider how to finance their businesses and employment costs in the short term and whether they need to use the Business Interruption Loan Scheme or Bounce Back Loans.
The Chancellor also announced an increase to the cash grant scheme announced in early September. As with the expansions of the JSS, grants will be available to businesses legally required to close as a result of local lockdown restrictions. The grants of up to £3,000 will be based upon the value of business properties.
- Grants will be paid in fortnightly instalments;
- Small businesses with a rateable value of or below £15,000 can claim £1,300 per month;
- Medium sized businesses with a rateable value between £15,000 and £51,000 can claim £2,000 per month;
- Larger businesses are eligible for grants of £3,000 per month.
If you require guidance on the Jobs Support Scheme, contact our HR team at email@example.com or call your local partner on 0330 088 7111 for details on the cash grants.