The HMRC portal to claim back 80% of furloughed staff wages (up to £2,500) is now live. You can access it here.

Here are the things you need to know:

  • The maximum wage amount you can claim is £2,500 a month, or £576.92 a week, plus any National Insurance and pension contributions you can claim for.
  • You will need to submit all claims through the HMRC portal here.
  • You will need to provide the following information:
    • to be registered for PAYE online
    • your UK bank account number and sort code
    • your employer PAYE scheme reference number
    • the number of employees being furloughed
    • each employee’s National Insurance number
    • each employee’s payroll or employee number (optional)
    • the start date and end date of the claim
    • the full amount you’re claiming for including employer National Insurance contributions and employer minimum pension contributions
    • your phone number
    • contact name

You also need to provide either:

    • contact name
    • your name (or the employer’s name if you’re an agent)
    • your Corporation Tax unique taxpayer reference
    • your company registration number
  • All employees who have been furloughed need to have given their consent, and this signed confirmation will need to be kept on record for five years (in case of any future audits by HMRC).
  • The minimum period for furlough is three weeks.
  • To calculate a claim for employees on a set salary, you need to work out the following:
    • The total amount being paid to furloughed employees (up to 80% of £2,500 a month before tax per employee)
    • The total employer NICs
    • The total employer pension contributions (up to 3%).
  • In order to calculate 80%, the guidance suggests:
    • Start with your employee’s wages, which is their last pay period before 19 March – if you’re claiming for a full pay period, skip to step 4.
    • Divide by the total number of days in the pay period.
    • Multiply by the number of furlough days in the pay period.
    • Multiply by 80%.
    • There is an online calculator available to help you.
  • If you have over 100 employees you can submit the details as a CSV file, however, if you have 99 or less than you will manually need to input details.
  • You can only claim for employees who were on the payroll on or before 19 March 2020.
  • You should receive payment within 6 – 8 days of submitting a claim.
  • Holiday pay and furlough – if your employees are taking holiday whilst on furlough you will need to pay them 100% of their salary, but you can claim back 80%.
  • The portal requests one claim for each period (which is a calendar month). So even if you have furloughed staff at different points during the month you will submit it all under one claim.
  • You do not need to alter pay slips or reference furlough as you will run the payroll as usual, and claim back the money separately.
  • Be warned that you must complete your application in one go, and the system will time out after 30 minutes.
  • Keep hold of your claim reference number from the confirmation screen.
  • HMRC suggest you keep hold of your calculations in case of any queries at a later stage.

Full guidance is available on the HMRC website. Download this guide as a How-to-claim-back-furloughed-staff-wages-through-the-Job-Retention-Scheme-.pdf (24 downloads)

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