HMRC steps up on CJRS compliance, with changes to scheme just around the corner


HMRC is writing to around 3,000 employers that it believes may have received too large a grant under the Coronavirus Job Retention Scheme (CJRS). Letters are being sent to businesses that have claimed more than they’re entitled to, as well as businesses that have claimed despite not meeting the criteria needed to receive a grant (for example, by claiming for employees that are not eligible under the CJRS terms).

Those who find themselves in receipt of such a letter are being advised to contact HMRC at their earliest convenience – whether or not they think they’ve made a mistake. And fret not – outstanding amounts that are repaid voluntarily and within the time limit will not lead to penalties being levied. Fraudsters, however, are likely to receive a rude awakening.

If you don’t get a letter in the next week or so, don’t assume you’re off the hook. Some commentators have claimed that this is just round one, and more employers will be contacted in the future.

Changes to CJRS over the coming months

A recent HMRC Bulletin highlighted recent deadlines for the aforementioned CJRS. From 1st August, the scheme has covered 80% of furloughed employees’ salaries, but not employer (secondary) NIC or pension contributions. And from September 1st, CJRS will only cover 70% of wages, up to a maximum £2,187.50. Employers will be expected to find the additional 10% (up to £2,500) themselves, as well as deal with employer NIC and pension contributions.

The scheme will finally wind down to a complete stop on 31st October, but claims can be made retrospectively until 30th November  2020.

Employers are eligible for further help through the Job Retention Bonus. This scheme will allow businesses to claim a one-time payment of £1,000 for each employee for whom they received a CJRS grant – provided they remain continuously employed until the end of January 2021. Eligibility depends on the employee earning at least £520 per month in November 2020, December 2020, and January 2021. The bonus can be claimed after filing PAYE information, and will be paid from February next year.

If you need any help navigating the CJRS, then give JW Hinks a call on 0121 456 0190. We can give you everything you need to make sure you’re receiving the maximum amount of financial support that your business is entitled too, and not a penny more.

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JW Hinks LLP
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Birmingham B15 3BH

Phone: +44 (0) 121 456 0190
Fax: +44 (0) 121 456 0191