Latest Message from HMRC

Commemorative Artwork – A Letter from the Mayor of Eastbourne
May 13, 2021
‘Together’ in Eastbourne
May 18, 2021

The latest information about the financial support schemes available to help you, as part of the UK Government’s Plan for Jobs.

This includes:

  • a reminder of the 14‌‌‌ ‌June deadline for submitting your May Coronavirus Job Retention Scheme (CJRS) claims
  • details of changes to the CJRS from July
  • the 21‌‌‌ ‌June deadline for joining the online VAT deferral new payment scheme.

To find out what other financial support may be available for you and your business, search ‘find coronavirus financial support’ on GOV‌‌‌.UK.

1. Submit your CJRS claims for May

CJRS claims for periods in May can be submitted now, and must be made by Monday‌‌‌‌ 14‌‌‌ ‌June.

You can claim before, during or after you process your payroll. If you can, it’s best to make a claim once you’re sure of the exact number of hours your employees will work so you don’t have to amend your claim later.

Check if you and your employees are eligible and work out how much you can claim using our CJRS calculator and examples, by searching ‘Job Retention Scheme’ on GOV‌‌‌‌‌‌‌‌‌‌‌‌.UK.

Conditions of claiming CJRS grants

You must pay the associated employee tax and National Insurance contributions to HMRC. This is a condition of applying for the grant, so not doing so will mean you’ll need to repay the whole of the CJRS grant and you may not be able to claim for future CJRS grants. 

If you are having difficulties paying any of your tax liabilities to HMRC, we will work with you to explore affordable payment options – for example, through a payment plan where you can pay over time, in instalments. To find out more go to GOV‌‌‌‌.UK and search ‘time to pay arrangement’.

What you need to do now

  1. If you haven’t submitted your claim for April but believe that you have a reasonable excuse for missing the 14‌‌‌ ‌May deadline, check if you can make a late claim by searching ‘claim for wages’ on GOV‌‌‌‌‌‌‌‌.UK.
  2. Submit any claims for May no later than Monday‌‌‌ ‌‌14‌‌ June.
  3. Keep records that support the amount of CJRS grants you claim, in case HMRC needs to check them.
  4. Make sure you’re paying employee tax and National Insurance contributions to HMRC and contact us if you’re struggling to pay.

2. Changes to the CJRS from July

The UK Government will continue to pay 80% of your furloughed employees’ usual wages for the hours not worked, up to a cap of £2,500 per month, to the end of June.

In July, CJRS grants will cover 70% of employees’ usual wages for the hours not worked, up to a cap of £2,187.50. In August and September, this will then reduce to 60% of employees’ usual wages up to a cap of £1,875.

You will need to pay the 10% difference in July (20% in August and September) so that you continue to pay your furloughed employees at least 80% of their usual wages for the hours they do not work during this time, up to a cap of £2,500 per month.

For the hours not worked you can continue to choose to top up your employees’ wages above the 80% level or cap for each month, at your own expense.

To help you plan ahead for all future claim periods, the CJRS calculator is available to help you work out how much you can claim for employees. To find this and everything you need to know about the CJRS, search ‘Job Retention Scheme’ on GOV‌‌‌‌.UK.

3. VAT deferral – apply online by 21‌‌‌ ‌June

The VAT deferral new payment scheme is open for all businesses who deferred paying VAT due between 20‌‌‌ ‌March‌‌ ‌and 30‌‌‌‌‌ ‌‌June 2020 and were unable to pay in full by 31‌‌‌ ‌March‌‌ ‌2021.

If you haven’t done so yet, apply now to spread these payments – businesses that join by 19‌‌‌‌‌ ‌‌May‌‌‌ ‌2021 can pay in up to nine monthly instalments. If you apply to spread your payments between 20‌‌‌ ‌May and 21‌‌‌ ‌June you can pay in eight instalments.

21‌‌‌ ‌June is the deadline for you to join this scheme. You can apply quickly and simply online without needing to call us. To find out more, including what you need to sign up online, go to GOV‌‌‌‌‌‌‌‌‌‌‌‌.UK and search ‘VAT deferral’.

If you’re still unable to pay and need more time, please contact us – go to GOV‌‌‌‌‌‌‌.UK and search ‘if you cannot pay your tax bill on time’.

You may be charged a 5% penalty and/or interest if you do not sign up to the VAT deferral scheme by the deadline of 21‌‌‌ ‌‌‌‌‌June, or pay in full by 30‌‌‌ ‌June, or get in touch with us to make an alternative arrangement to pay by 30‌‌‌‌‌ ‌‌June‌‌ ‌2021.

4. Claiming tax relief for working from home

Your employees may be able to claim tax relief for additional household costs if they have to work at home on a regular basis, either for all or part of the week. Additional costs include heating, metered water bills or business calls that have been incurred wholly, exclusively and necessarily as a direct result of working from home. They don’t include costs that would stay the same whether employees are working at home or in an office.

Your employees can apply quickly and easily using the HMRC online service, which is now open for claims covering periods up to 5‌‌‌ ‌April‌‌‌ ‌2022. For more information go to GOV‌‌.UK and search ‘tax relief job expenses’.

Employees who have to complete a Self Assessment tax return will need to claim working from home expenses through the employment income pages of their tax return instead of the digital service.

5. Daily contact testing study

Some of your employees may be taking part in a new study by Public Health England and NHS Test and Trace. Through the study, daily coronavirus tests will be given to as many as 40,000 people across England who have been in contact with someone who has tested positive for coronavirus.

The study is designed to gather evidence on safe alternatives to self-isolation and could help to reduce the length of time that those in contact with positive coronavirus cases need to self-isolate.

Find out more on GOV‌‌‌‌.UK by searching ‘daily contact testing study’.

6. Where can I get further support?

Thousands of people have benefitted from our webinars which offer information on the CJRS and other government support, and how they apply to you. To book online, or to view updated guidance, go to GOV‌‌‌.UK and search ‘help and support if your business is affected by coronavirus’.

If you’re booked on a webinar but can no longer attend, please cancel your place to allow space for others to register.

There’s a list of monthly claims deadlines and a helpful step-by-step guide on GOV‌‌‌.UK, summarising the latest information on the CJRS and the steps you need to take to make a claim – you can find these by searching ‘Job Retention Scheme step by step guide’.

To find out what other financial support may be available for you and your business as part of the UK Government’s Plan for Jobs, search ‘find coronavirus financial support’ on GOV‌‌‌‌.UK.

7. A word about scams

We are aware of recent increases in scam phone calls, emails and texts. If someone contacts you or your employees claiming to be from HMRC saying that you owe tax and face arrest, are due a tax refund, that your National Insurance number has been compromised or asking you to transfer money or give bank or other personal details, it might be a scam.

Search GOV‌‌‌‌.UK for our ‘scams checklist’ and to find out how to report tax scams. You can also access the National Cyber Security Centre’s new guide on how to stay secure online and protect yourself or your business against cybercrime by searching ‘Cyber Aware’.

Jim Harra, Chief Executive and First Permanent Secretary – HMRC