Furlough FAQ

Employers should discuss with their staff and make any changes to the employment contract by agreement. When employers are making decisions in relation to the process; including deciding who to offer furlough to, equality and discrimination laws will apply in the usual way.

To be eligible for the grant, employers must have confirmed to their employee (or reached collective agreement with a trade union) in writing that they have been furloughed. You must:

  • make sure that the agreement is consistent with employment, equality and discrimination laws

  • keep a written record of the agreement for 5 years

  • keep records of how many hours your employees work and the number of hours they are furloughed (i.e. not working)

The employee does not have to provide a written response and you do not need to place all your employees on furlough.

Prior to 1 July 2020, employees on furlough cannot undertake any work for you other than training. From 1 July, you will:

  • only be able to claim for employees who have previously been furloughed for at least 3 consecutive weeks taking place any time between 1 March and 30 June 2020

  • be able to flexibly furlough employees – this means you can bring your employees back to work for any amount of time, and any work pattern

  • still be able to claim the furlough grant for the hours your flexibly furloughed employees do not work, compared to the hours they would normally have worked in that period


If you flexibly furlough employees, you will need to agree this with the employee (or reach collective agreement with a trade union) and keep a new written agreement that confirms the new furlough arrangement. You will need to:

  • make sure that the agreement is consistent with employment, equality and discrimination laws

  • keep a written record of the agreement for 5 years

  • keep records of how many hours your employees work and the number of hours they are furloughed (i.e. not working).

You do not need to place all your employees on furlough, and you can continue to fully furlough employees if you wish. Employees cannot undertake any work for you during time that you record them as being on furlough.

Using minimum furlough periods

Until 1 July 2020, any employees you place on furlough must be furloughed for a minimum of 3 consecutive weeks. When they return to work, they must be taken off furlough. Employees can be furloughed more than once, but they must be furloughed for a minimum of 3 consecutive weeks each time they are furloughed.


From 1 July, agreed flexible furlough agreements can last any amount of time. Employees can enter into a flexible furlough agreement more than once.

Where a previously furloughed employee starts a new furlough period before 1 July, this furlough period must be for a minimum of 3 consecutive weeks. This is the case regardless of whether the 3 consecutive week minimum period ends before or after 1 July.

For example, a previously furloughed employee can start a new furlough period on 22 June which would have to continue for at least 3 consecutive weeks ending on or after 12 July. After this, the employee can then be flexibly furloughed for any period. However, after 1 July, employers cannot make claims that cross calendar months, so the employer will need to make a separate claim for the period up to 30 June.

Although flexible furlough agreements can last any amount of time, unless otherwise specified the period that you claim for must be for a minimum claim period of 7 calendar days.

If you make an error when claiming

If you want to delete a claim in the online service, you must do this within 72 hours.

If you have made an error in a claim that has resulted in an over-claimed amount, you must pay this back to HMRC.

If you are making another claim then you can tell HMRC about an over-claimed amount as part of this. When you make your next claim you will be asked whether you need to reduce the amount to take account of a previous over-claim. Your new claim amount will be reduced to reflect the over-claimed amount and you should keep a record of this adjustment for 6 years.


If you have made an error in a claim and do not plan to submit further claims, you should contact HMRC to let them know about your error and find out how to pay back any over-claimed amounts. Once you have contacted HMRC you will be given a payment reference number and directed to make a payment.

If you have made an error that has resulted in an under-claimed amount, you should contact HMRC to amend your claim. As you are increasing the amount of your claim, they need to conduct additional checks.


Do you need support in managing your business' finances as you reopen post-lockdown? Contact us.

  • Services

    Accounts

    Tax returns

    VAT returns

    Bookkeeping

    Payroll

    Company secretarial

  • Marlow Office

    Phone: 01628 477709

    info@pink-accounts.co.uk

    Address:

    The Clock House

    Station Approach

    Marlow, Bucks
    SL7 1NT

  • London Office

    Phone: 0207 4399200
     

    Address:

    16 D'Arblay Street
    London
    W1F 8EA

© Pink Affinity Limited (A member of Affinity Group)

Registered in England No. 04430398 | VAT Registration No. 787 4788 49 | Data Protection Registration No. Z7185875

  • LinkedIn
  • Facebook