Job Support Scheme and Self-Employed Income Support Scheme government support to be increased.

Perhaps in recognition of the fact that Tier 2 coronavirus restrictions can significantly damage a company’s ability to trade normally, whilst legally allowing them to remain open, additional Government support was announced on October 22. However, while the hospitality trade might benefit the most, it is possible that some financial services firms might decide to make use of the assistance that is available.

Previously, the Job Support Scheme (JSS) required firms to offer workers employment for at least one-third of their normal hours, and to pay them an additional allowance for one-third of their unworked hours. This meant that the firm was forced to pay 55% of the salary, and that it may well have been cheaper for the firm to retain one employee full-time and to make another redundant rather than to keep two people employed under the JSS.

Now, the JSS stipulates that firms need only offer employees work for 20% of their usual hours. The firm then needs only to contribute an additional amount for 5% of the unworked hours, while the Government will pay for 62% of the unworked hours. This means that, as previously, the combination of employer and Government support will see workers receive payments covering two-thirds of their unworked hours.

The re-designed JSS is likely to be available to all small and medium-sized firms, and any larger firms that can demonstrate that they have been adversely affected by the coronavirus pandemic.

The funds available in the third tranche of the Self-Employed Income Support Scheme (SEISS) have been doubled to 40% of the individual’s trading profits over a three-month period, subject to a cap of £3,750. However, the only way SEISS grants can now be claimed is if the individual’s business has experienced a reduction in demand due to Covid, whereas previously claims were welcome if the business had been affected in any way by the pandemic, e.g. increased costs, staff illnesses, PPE costs or time spent away from business activities due to self-isolation or shielding.

The third tranche of SEISS will cover November 2020 to January 2021.

Chancellor of the Exchequer Rishi Sunak MP said:

“I’ve always said that we must be ready to adapt our financial support as the situation evolves, and that is what we are doing today. These changes mean that our support will reach many more people and protect many more jobs.

“I know that the introduction of further restrictions has left many people worried for themselves, their families and communities. I hope the government’s stepped-up support can be part of the country pulling together in the coming months.”

The information shown in this article was correct at the time of publication. Articles are not routinely reviewed by Scott Robert and as such are not updated. Please be aware of the facts, circumstances or legal position may change after publication of the article.