Job Support Scheme

The Job Support Scheme is designed to protect viable jobs in businesses who are facing lower demand over the winter months due to Covid-19, to help keep their employees attached to the workforce. The scheme will open on 1 November 2020 and run for 6 months.

The company will continue to pay its employee for time worked, but the cost of hours not worked will be split between the employer, the Government (through wage support) and the employee (through a wage reduction), and the employee will keep their job.

JSS Open vs. JSS Closed

  • Unlike the previous Coronavirus Job Retention Scheme, the Job Support Scheme will operate in two different ways depending on whether employers have been legally required to close their premises or not.
  • For JSS Closed (premises required to close), each employee who cannot work will receive two thirds of their pay, fully funded by Government, to a maximum of £2,083.33 per month
  • For JSS Open (where premises remain open but demand is lowered), employees claimed through the scheme will need to work a minimum of 20% of their usual hours. They will receive 66.67% of their pay for hours not worked, with the employer contributing 5% and Government 61.67% (to a maximum of £1,541.75 per month).

Employers using the Job Support Scheme will also be able to claim the Job Retention Bonus if they meet the eligibility criteria.

Read more on the Job Support Scheme here and download a factsheet on the Job Support Scheme closed, here. 

Eligibility Criteria

For both JSS Open and JSS Closed, the following criteria will need to be met:

  • Employer enrolled for PAYE online and has a UK, Channel Island, or Isle of Man bank account
  • Organisations with staff costs that are fully publicly funded should not use the scheme
  • Employees must have been in employment on 23 September 2020 – including those who ceased employment after this date and were rehired
  • Individuals who are treated as employees for Income Tax purposes are employees for the purpose of this scheme – including zero-hours contracts and agency workers
  • Employees do not need to have been furloughed under CJRS to be eligible for this scheme

For JSS Open, the following criteria also need to be met:

  • some, or all, employees are working reduced hours – employees must still be working for at least 20% of their usual hours
  • an employer with 250 or more employees on 23 September 2020 has undertaken a Financial Impact Test
  • employers must have reached written agreement with their employee (or reached written collective agreement with a trade union where the relevant terms are determined by collective agreement) that they have been offered a temporary working agreement

For JSS Closed, the following criteria also need to be met:

  • employees primary work place is at the premises that have been legally required to close as a direct result of coronavirus restrictions
  • employers have instructed the employee to cease work for a minimum period of at least 7 consecutive calendar days

Note that these are not the full eligibility criteria and that more details will be made available on the official UK Government website in coming days.

Coverage and Claiming

  • Employers will remain liable for Class 1 employer NICs and pension contributions
  • Employers should prepare now to make a claim from 8 December 2020, covering salary for pay periods ending and paid in November. Indicative calculations to help employers prepare a claim are available.
  • Employers claiming JSS may still claim the Job Retention Bonus, and grants claimed under JSS can be used to help meet the Lower Earnings Limit of this scheme.
  • Where an employee’s pay period includes eligible amounts under CJRS until 31 October and JSS from 1 November, the amounts to be claimed for each scheme should be calculated separately. No amount of gross pay should be included in both schemes.

Page updated 26/10/2020


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