Extension to the Coronavirus Job Retention Scheme (“furlough scheme”) until end of October

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On 12 May 2020, Chancellor Rishi Sunak announced that the furlough scheme in its current form will be extended until 31 July 2020. There will be no changes to the support packages for workers under the scheme until that point.

From 1 August 2020 until 31 October 2020 the furlough scheme will remain in place, at the same rate of 80% of pay (up to a maximum of £2,500 per month), but there will be some changes put in place to enable the economy to start moving again. These will include enabling staff to return to work part-time and for businesses to pay a percentage towards the salaries of their furloughed staff.

This is welcome news for businesses, trade unions and individuals. Statistics released today have stated that the furlough scheme has protected 7.5 million workers and almost one million businesses (gov.uk) and forms just part of a wider coronavirus support package available to workers and businesses.

Businesses should update their staff on the change to the end of the furlough scheme, and we would recommend making it clear that the current arrangements end on 31 July and then future arrangements will be subject to further correspondence with the employer/engager.

We would recommend that you take legal advice on your particular circumstances and in relation to changing any furlough agreements, bringing people back to work from furlough, or making redundancies whilst the furlough scheme remains in existence.

Further information

For specific advice for your business, please get in touch with our specialist Employment Law team through this website or by calling 0330 404 0778.

For all of our COVID-19 (Coronavirus) advice, please visit https://www.ashtonslegal.co.uk/coronavirus/

Our partners at Ashtons HR Consulting are also on hand to assist you.


This information is correct at 2.00pm on 12 May 2020.


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