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23 March 2020

Assistance Available to Employers

Current guidelines on assistance available to employers based in Ireland and the UK are listed below.

Please note PKF-FPM will issue regular updates as more information is available.

Please keep us up to date with your current situation by contacting our team. Once you require this scheme PKF-FPM will register you as an employer and the necessary employees affected.

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UK

Job Retention Scheme

Under the Coronavirus Job Retention Scheme, all UK employers will be able to access support to continue paying part of their employees’ salary for those employees that would otherwise have been laid off during this crisis.

You will need to: Designate affected employees as ‘furloughed workers’ and notify your employees of this change – changing the status of employees remains subject to existing employment law and, depending on the employment contract may be subject to negotiation.  Submit information to HMRC about the employees that have been furloughed and their earnings through a new online portal (HMRC will set out further details on the information required) HMRC will reimburse 80% of furloughed workers wage costs, up to a cap of £2,500 per month.

How to access: By application to HMRC, who will also administer payment. Employers are required to designate affected employees as ‘furloughed workers’ and notify the employees of this change. Businesses will then submit information to HMRC about the employees that have been furloughed and their earnings through a new online portal.

Next steps: Detailed guidance is due shortly. HMRC are working to get this scheme up and running as soon as possible but recognise their existing systems are not set up to facilitate payments to employers. The aim is that the first grants will be paid within weeks and before the end of April, however, businesses should recognise there may be a funding gap between the payment of wages and the eventual receipt of the grant which they could be required to finance, particularly during the initial roll out of the scheme

Please keep us up to date with your current situation by e-mailing payroll@pkffpm.com Once you require this scheme PKF-FPM Accountants Ltd will register you as an employer and the necessary employees affected.

 Support for businesses who are paying sick pay to employees

SSP refund will cover up to 2 weeks’ SSP per eligible employee who has been off work because of COVID-19.  The government will work with employers over the coming months to set up the repayment mechanism for employers as soon as possible.

For further information please visit:
https://www.gov.uk/government/publications/guidance-to-employers-and-businesses-about-covid-19/covid-19-support-for-businesses

Ireland

  • Following medically required self-isolation for 2 weeks or for full duration of absence from work following confirmed diagnosis of COVID-19 the current 6-day waiting period for Illness Benefit from the Department of Employment Affairs and Social Protection will not apply.  The personal rate of Illness Benefit will increase from €203.00 per week to €305.00 per week.  Information Found Here
  • Employees who are laid off temporarily without pay due to a reduction in business activity and/or business closure as a precaution against the spread of COVID-19 (where the employer cannot continue to pay their wages) can apply for a Jobseeker Payment or Supplementary Welfare Allowance This application can be made online CLICK HERE.  Employees who are put on short-time working by their employer due to a reduction in business activity related to COVID-19 may apply for a Short-time Work Support payment, Application forms: Jobseeker’s Allowance/Jobseeker’s Benefit UP1 and Short Time Work Support Form UP14 are available to download CLICK HERE
  • Revenue Commissioners have introduced a support payment scheme administered through the Department of Employment Affairs and Social Protection to provide a special COVID-19 Unemployment Payment of €203.00 per week to employees who are temporarily laid off due to the ongoing pandemic.  The scheme operates by providing employers who satisfy the below conditions with the option to make the payment of €203.00 per week to affected employees through the normal payroll channels, before notifying the Revenue Commissioners through their payroll submissions.  Where the employer has satisfied the criteria and applied the payment correctly, they will generally be reimbursed on a “next day” basis by Revenue.  The employer should also administer any PAYE or USC refunds due to the employee, with these sums also being repaid to the employer through the scheme.

In order to avail of the Scheme, employers must:

  • Have temporarily laid off staff as a result of the impact on their business of the COVID-19 pandemic;
  • Keep their staff on payroll and not cease the employee with Revenue;
  • Have made a payroll submission in respect of the employee in the period from 1 February 2020 to 15 March 2020; and
  • Be unable to make top-up payments over and above the emergency payment of €203.00 per week.

The payment of €203 will be made to the employee without deduction of PAYE, USC or PRSI. Where an employee is entitled to a refund of PAYE, USC or PRSI, this should be repaid to the employee by the employer, who will in turn be refunded the amount by the Revenue Commissioners.

Following the payroll submission, the employer will be credited €203.00 per relevant employee per week to the employer’s bank account as registered in ROS.

Please keep us up to date with your current situation by e-mailing payroll.roi@pkffpm.com

For further information please visit: https://www.gov.ie/en/publication/99104a-covid-19-coronavirus/

Latest guidance and support

With Government advice being updated daily, we will be keeping this dedicated Business Support Centre and our social media channels refreshed as and when relevant. Our dedicated teams are monitoring the situation closely, but should you have any questions at this stage, please do not hesitate to get in touch with one of the PKF-FPM Team.

Stay Home and Stay Safe

 

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PKF-FPM Accountants Limited and PKF-FPM Accountants (Ireland) Limited are part of the PKF-FPM Group, branded PKF-FPM which is regulated by Chartered Accountants Ireland. PKF-FPM is a member firm of PKF International Limited.

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