Furlough pay for new staff

Are employers with new staff who started in March 2020 entitled to the 80% furlough relief

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Hi, I have a client that has taken on a new salaried member of staff  a week ago and because  work is drying up they are thinking about putting them on a furlough period and claiming under the Coronavuros Job Retention Scheme. They, however, are under the impression that they will not eligible for this. I have heard a few other clients mention that any support will be based on February wages but I cannot find any information to confirm this. Does anyone know if this is correct? I have tried my best to scour the interenet for the answer but cannot find anything on this. Im guessing that the answer will be "we are still waiting for clarification" just like everything else at the moment but though someone on here may be able to help. Any advice would be greatly appreciated.

Thanks in advance.

Replies (8)

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By Learningvfast
25th Mar 2020 23:40

According to ICAEW guidance just published it is available to all employees on the payroll at the end of Feb.

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Replying to Learningvfast:
By jcace
25th Mar 2020 23:59

That's just the ICAEW's "understanding of this policy and how this will work based on the information published so far. It should not be relied on for advice at this stage but is intended to give an indication of how the scheme will work."
I'm guessing their reference to employees on the payroll at end of Feb is because the scheme will backdate to 1 March.
In truth, we need to wait for the detail.

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Replying to jcace:
blue sheep
26th Mar 2020 06:29

Yes puzzled me that one, I cannot see where the ICAEW have come up with that from.

I mean it makes sense for a monthly payroll so that you don't suddenly get a load of spurious employees being added in March and then furlough a week later, but you could quite legitimately have taken on a weekly employee 1st week of March, paid them properly for a couple of weeks and then the business has to close especially given the high turnover of staff in the hospitality trades.

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Haider Ali
By hyderaly
25th Mar 2020 23:48

What is not clear, among many other things, is how the reference pay of mid-February starters will be calculated.

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By lionofludesch
26th Mar 2020 07:24

I thought the employees had to be on the payroll by 28 Feb but I can't remember where I saw that.

I'm suffering from a misinformation overload.

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By mbee1
26th Mar 2020 08:16

We have a new starter on 30 March. He gave his former employer 4 weeks notice. As the office has closed and we're all working from home he can no longer start next Monday so we have mutually agreed that we will pay him what his former employer was paying him which was substantially less. We're fortunate that we can afford to do this but we're paying him to sit at home.

We assume he can't be furloughed but, as usual, there is no detail!

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Replying to mbee1:
By Sanjeev Nanda
26th Mar 2020 08:38

Hi, If this employee was on the payroll on 28th Feb 2020, the ICAEW is applicable to this scenario as well. He does not get the furloughed remittance, and you should tell him as such. However, since times are dire, I wish you would look at this with a empathetic lens. You can either pay him a "basic" pay, with any further payment being an "advance" in this scenario - or you can let him go after the first month, after he is paid his monthly, and a bit of severance to boot. I hope you look at this scenario with some moral clarity and deliver what is right.

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Replying to Sanjeev Nanda:
By jcace
26th Mar 2020 09:50

The ICAEW doesn't have any more info than the rest of us. It would be unwise to make hasty statements before the details of the scheme are published.

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