The Government’s recent announcement that employees who cannot work from home should return to work has given rise to more questions than answers. Without specific legislation in place, employers, HR professionals and their advisers need to turn to existing legislative and contractual principles for answers. In brief, where an employer is keen and able to reopen its business, we have here some steps to take to protect yourself and employees.
As of 05.30 am this morning (20 April 2020) employers are able to make claims on HMRC’s Coronavirus Job Retention Scheme’s Portal. It is reportedly fairly easy to use the portal, although heavy traffic could be expected.
Within a few days of publishing our Furlough Letter Template, the Government has made some changes to the Coronavirus Job Retention Scheme and HMRC have confirmed that they will be accepting claims from next Monday,
For those of you whose business is now quieter than usual, you could consider using the time to do some housekeeping and take care of some of the things you never normally get around to. For example, you could run a check to see your website is legally compliant and that you have the Ts & Cs you need for when we come out of quarantine (or while we are in it).
The Chancellor has announced plans in the March 2020 budget that the government will reimburse small employers (meaning those with less than 250 employees) for statutory sick pay paid out to employees for the first 14 days of sickness.