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letter to staff to say furloughed??

Does anyone have a basic letter for staff to tell them they are to be furloughed?

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Hi I know we are all chasing our tails as accountants and employers but does anyone have a templete letter to give to clients/staff to explain they are to be furloughed.  Just thought if someone has already done one it will save the rest of us, thank you 

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By yelsnew
24th Mar 2020 13:49

Just rang acas and got nowhere. They only had the advice from their website.

No info on how to tell the employee, whether they need paying by employer (who gets reimbursed next month) or if they can be paid after the employer receives the amount from HMRC.

Clueless as to how to do some month end payrolls

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By Cheshire
24th Mar 2020 15:02

Strictly speaking you dont tell the employee....your negotiate it, if there is nothing in their contract to cover such!

To be fair to Acas, no information has come out of government/HMRC yet, so I dont know how they would be expected to know. I suggested to one of the prof bodies two days ago that they lobby for some basic info and how to process this month ahead of their being a system.....guess what, Im still waiting.

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By yelsnew
24th Mar 2020 14:58

Yep your absolutely right, ACAS are Indeed dealing with the same situation as us.

Think it's crazy gov announced it, backdated to 1 march, but with no basic details. Though it is a crazy situation to be fair to them too!

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By legerman
24th Mar 2020 18:21

Cheshire wrote:

Strictly speaking you dont tell the employee....your negotiate it, if there is nothing in their contract to cover such!

To be fair to Acas, no information has come out of government/HMRC yet, so I dont know how they would be expected to know. I suggested to one of the prof bodies two days ago that they lobby for some basic info and how to process this month ahead of their being a system.....guess what, Im still waiting.

Absolutely. Just spent this morning doing exactly that. Re the can't pay wages thread I initiated yesterday, the employer decided to ask his 3 workers if they wanted to be furloughed or made redundant. All 3 have agreed to be furloughed and I just hope HMRC are able to get the portal in place quickly and make prompt payments.

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By Andy Reeves
26th Mar 2020 09:45

Well, if the employer can't pay the 80% under furloughing, then he could afford to pay notice and redundancy either, so why was the option offered? One is free money, the other not.

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By legerman
26th Mar 2020 11:40

The 3 workers have agreed to wait until the money is paid by the Government before being paid themselves. Effectively they are creditors of the business.

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By Matrix
24th Mar 2020 14:13

I will have one later since one client is paying an employment lawyer. Only need to enter date of furlough in Moneysoft as they are paying full pay.

Another client sent an email to all employees.

Another client wants to pay from the till and go home so I prepared the payslips and she has written on them that they are furloughed from today. Will adjust final few days of March in April when we know more.

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By yelsnew
24th Mar 2020 15:01

Would be interesting to see what they come up with.

Here's moneysoft guide to adding furlough details in case you haven't seen it:
https://moneysoft.co.uk/support/furloughed-workers

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By Matrix
24th Mar 2020 15:36

Thanks, I don’t know if I will use this as what happens if we put an amount for furloughed pay and when we complete the form it could change. The employee doesn’t really care who pays it.

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By yelsnew
24th Mar 2020 21:12

Interesting, from the info I gathered it seemed the employer had to make the payment of wages hence the mention of cash flow issues at the end of the JRS info on gov site.

Are you simply entering a date of furlough onto moneysoft and not submitting anything or having employer pay anything? Wait for scheme to pay employees? (Sounds like what weather spoons are doing)

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By Matrix
24th Mar 2020 21:31

No I am not adjusting anything on Moneysoft if the employees are still on full pay. I don’t see why this would make any difference when the employer claims the money back? Did you read the notes - I thought it was optional.

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By James Green
24th Mar 2020 15:23

Here’s one from Daniel Barnett an HR barrister (https://www.danielbarnett.co.uk/)

http://freepdfhosting.com/67b260ae05.pdf

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By sarahtaylor2018
24th Mar 2020 17:28

Thank you that is great

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By pharvey
29th Jun 2020 18:49

Now that we are faced with Flexible Furlough from the 1st July, I guess we have to update employees Contracts to reflect this. Do you know if there an updated letter for this?

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ALISK
By atleastisoundknowledgable...
24th Mar 2020 21:53

I’ve look at a few solicitors website who say that we need to go through the motions as if it was redundancy l, rather than just say e’ees A, B & D you’re furloughed.

Thoughts?

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By Cheshire
25th Mar 2020 08:09

You would probably get away with that approach for many, but Im sure there will be a fair few attempts at litigation once things are back to normal. One of my clients wanted to go down this route for 1 staff member, but that one is the one who is already clued up/ex shop steward type so Ive warned him to take extreme care and ensure he follows the process properly.

I think it needs sensitive handling and showing care for staff and if that means following the process, then follow the process.

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By atleastisoundknowledgable...
25th Mar 2020 08:30

Cheshire wrote:

if that means following the process, then follow the process.

This is something that I feel hasn’t been highlighted enough, to the extend that I found myself queuing whether it needed to happen or not.

The vast majority of people will just say it without any process, and probably get away with it. I’m having to caveat emails saying your prob need to under date the due process similar to redundancy- I’m assuming that you’re doing that and just asking me to process the results.

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By mbee1
25th Mar 2020 15:41

If you use Brightpay they're hoping to have template furlough letter available shortly

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Paul Layte
By Paul Layte FCA
26th Mar 2020 09:34

Yes, see our resource centre for all this and Furlough template and guidance. Other accountants, please feel free to use with your clients but please pay it forward somehow.

https://nextlevelbusiness.co.uk/coronavirus-business-continuity-resource...

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By ksagroup
26th Mar 2020 09:48

Below is content for a letter we have prepared for one of our clients; please adapt as you think necessary.

We are sorry to confirm that the government has ordered all pubs and restaurants to close from 20th March 2020. What does this mean for employers and employees?

There is a very good web page published by the government for detailed background:

https://www.gov.uk/government/publications/guidance-to-employers-and-bus...

Obviously, the effect of the government announcements is still to work through. But practical steps need to be taken now.

Today we will be varying your employment contract under Government instructions due to Coronavirus (COVID-19).
We will not be working during this period which is expected to last three months or more.
At this stage you will not be made redundant. We are not laying you off work.
CPL will be placing all of you into what is called a “furloughed workers” state from today.
HMRC will reimburse 80% of furloughed workers wage costs, up to a cap of £2,500 per month. HMRC are working urgently to set up a system for reimbursement. We think this will take until end of April and should last for 3 months or until we can re-open.
We believe (but this needs to be confirmed) that we will take an average of your last 16 weeks pay and that this will form the average weekly pay. We have been informed that you will be receiving (once we have registered) 80% of that average income. CPL will be paying this.
We understand that we will be receiving a grant from the local authority to cover wages to be paid from next week, until the scheme above is available.
You will, at this stage, be paid for the hours worked between the period of Wednesday 19th to Friday 21st , next week (to be confirmed).
In addition (to be confirmed) we expect that you will get the balance of the average time you would have worked for the remainder of the normal working week, when we receive the grant from government. Hopefully, this too will happen next week.
Other matters;

Rent: as your job has been furloughed all landlords have been banned from evicting for a minimum of three months; you should consider asking for a reduction in rent or a rent holiday.
Mortgages; as your job is furloughed you may be able to apply for a 3 month mortgage holiday. You will need to repay this in future. We do not know the terms of this holiday or the repayment requirements but you can ask your mortgage company.
If you need evidence of being furloughed you can ask NAME our accountant for a letter of confirmation.
You can email me at any time with questions, concerns or worries. I will try to answer them for NAME
Obviously, as news develops this week the letter may need to be changed or varied. We are endeavouring to help our clients and contacts, but do please be aware that we can accept no liability for any errors or omissions.

Thanks (0)
By ksagroup
26th Mar 2020 09:48

Below is content for a letter we have prepared for one of our clients; please adapt as you think necessary.

We are sorry to confirm that the government has ordered all pubs and restaurants to close from 20th March 2020. What does this mean for employers and employees?

There is a very good web page published by the government for detailed background:

https://www.gov.uk/government/publications/guidance-to-employers-and-bus...

Obviously, the effect of the government announcements is still to work through. But practical steps need to be taken now.

Today we will be varying your employment contract under Government instructions due to Coronavirus (COVID-19).
We will not be working during this period which is expected to last three months or more.
At this stage you will not be made redundant. We are not laying you off work.
CPL will be placing all of you into what is called a “furloughed workers” state from today.
HMRC will reimburse 80% of furloughed workers wage costs, up to a cap of £2,500 per month. HMRC are working urgently to set up a system for reimbursement. We think this will take until end of April and should last for 3 months or until we can re-open.
We believe (but this needs to be confirmed) that we will take an average of your last 16 weeks pay and that this will form the average weekly pay. We have been informed that you will be receiving (once we have registered) 80% of that average income. CPL will be paying this.
We understand that we will be receiving a grant from the local authority to cover wages to be paid from next week, until the scheme above is available.
You will, at this stage, be paid for the hours worked between the period of Wednesday 19th to Friday 21st , next week (to be confirmed).
In addition (to be confirmed) we expect that you will get the balance of the average time you would have worked for the remainder of the normal working week, when we receive the grant from government. Hopefully, this too will happen next week.
Other matters;

Rent: as your job has been furloughed all landlords have been banned from evicting for a minimum of three months; you should consider asking for a reduction in rent or a rent holiday.
Mortgages; as your job is furloughed you may be able to apply for a 3 month mortgage holiday. You will need to repay this in future. We do not know the terms of this holiday or the repayment requirements but you can ask your mortgage company.
If you need evidence of being furloughed you can ask NAME our accountant for a letter of confirmation.
You can email me at any time with questions, concerns or worries. I will try to answer them for NAME
Obviously, as news develops this week the letter may need to be changed or varied. We are endeavouring to help our clients and contacts, but do please be aware that we can accept no liability for any errors or omissions.

Thanks (0)
By ksagroup
26th Mar 2020 09:49

Below is content for a letter we have prepared for one of our clients; please adapt as you think necessary.

We are sorry to confirm that the government has ordered all pubs and restaurants to close from 20th March 2020. What does this mean for employers and employees?

There is a very good web page published by the government for detailed background:

https://www.gov.uk/government/publications/guidance-to-employers-and-bus...

Obviously, the effect of the government announcements is still to work through. But practical steps need to be taken now.

Today we will be varying your employment contract under Government instructions due to Coronavirus (COVID-19).
We will not be working during this period which is expected to last three months or more.
At this stage you will not be made redundant. We are not laying you off work.
CPL will be placing all of you into what is called a “furloughed workers” state from today.
HMRC will reimburse 80% of furloughed workers wage costs, up to a cap of £2,500 per month. HMRC are working urgently to set up a system for reimbursement. We think this will take until end of April and should last for 3 months or until we can re-open.
We believe (but this needs to be confirmed) that we will take an average of your last 16 weeks pay and that this will form the average weekly pay. We have been informed that you will be receiving (once we have registered) 80% of that average income. CPL will be paying this.
We understand that we will be receiving a grant from the local authority to cover wages to be paid from next week, until the scheme above is available.
You will, at this stage, be paid for the hours worked between the period of Wednesday 19th to Friday 21st , next week (to be confirmed).
In addition (to be confirmed) we expect that you will get the balance of the average time you would have worked for the remainder of the normal working week, when we receive the grant from government. Hopefully, this too will happen next week.
Other matters;

Rent: as your job has been furloughed all landlords have been banned from evicting for a minimum of three months; you should consider asking for a reduction in rent or a rent holiday.
Mortgages; as your job is furloughed you may be able to apply for a 3 month mortgage holiday. You will need to repay this in future. We do not know the terms of this holiday or the repayment requirements but you can ask your mortgage company.
If you need evidence of being furloughed you can ask NAME our accountant for a letter of confirmation.
You can email me at any time with questions, concerns or worries. I will try to answer them for NAME
Obviously, as news develops this week the letter may need to be changed or varied. We are endeavouring to help our clients and contacts, but do please be aware that we can accept no liability for any errors or omissions.

Thanks (0)
By ksagroup
26th Mar 2020 09:50

Below is content for a letter we have prepared for one of our clients; please adapt as you think necessary.

We are sorry to confirm that the government has ordered all pubs and restaurants to close from 20th March 2020. What does this mean for employers and employees?

There is a very good web page published by the government for detailed background:

https://www.gov.uk/government/publications/guidance-to-employers-and-bus...

Obviously, the effect of the government announcements is still to work through. But practical steps need to be taken now.

Today we will be varying your employment contract under Government instructions due to Coronavirus (COVID-19).
We will not be working during this period which is expected to last three months or more.
At this stage you will not be made redundant. We are not laying you off work.
CPL will be placing all of you into what is called a “furloughed workers” state from today.
HMRC will reimburse 80% of furloughed workers wage costs, up to a cap of £2,500 per month. HMRC are working urgently to set up a system for reimbursement. We think this will take until end of April and should last for 3 months or until we can re-open.
We believe (but this needs to be confirmed) that we will take an average of your last 16 weeks pay and that this will form the average weekly pay. We have been informed that you will be receiving (once we have registered) 80% of that average income. CPL will be paying this.
We understand that we will be receiving a grant from the local authority to cover wages to be paid from next week, until the scheme above is available.
You will, at this stage, be paid for the hours worked between the period of Wednesday 19th to Friday 21st , next week (to be confirmed).
In addition (to be confirmed) we expect that you will get the balance of the average time you would have worked for the remainder of the normal working week, when we receive the grant from government. Hopefully, this too will happen next week.
Other matters;

Rent: as your job has been furloughed all landlords have been banned from evicting for a minimum of three months; you should consider asking for a reduction in rent or a rent holiday.
Mortgages; as your job is furloughed you may be able to apply for a 3 month mortgage holiday. You will need to repay this in future. We do not know the terms of this holiday or the repayment requirements but you can ask your mortgage company.
If you need evidence of being furloughed you can ask NAME our accountant for a letter of confirmation.
You can email me at any time with questions, concerns or worries. I will try to answer them for NAME

Obviously, as news develops this week the letter may need to be changed or varied. We are endeavouring to help our clients and contacts, but do please be aware that we can accept no liability for any errors or omissions.

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By Wellmeadow
26th Mar 2020 09:55

We have seen several in our work with various clients and have produced a mashed up version with the key points in it. This is not legal advice but I am happy to share it on a 'without prejudice basis'. Not sure how to post it here, so email me at [email protected] and I will send it on. No charge of course.

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By Susie2012
26th Mar 2020 10:32

Hi all,
I just received a suggestion furlough letter from ACCA. But I have no idea how to attach the pdf to this discussion?

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By Susie2012
26th Mar 2020 10:33
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By Death
26th Mar 2020 11:07

So the £2,500 cap doesn't include employers NIC & pension then?

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By ksagroup
26th Mar 2020 12:59

Below is content for a letter we have prepared for one of our clients; please adapt as you think necessary.
We are sorry to confirm that the government has ordered all pubs and restaurants to close from 20th March 2020. What does this mean for employers and employees?
There is a very good web page published by the government for detailed background:
https://www.gov.uk/government/publications/guidance-to-employers-and-bus...
Obviously, the effect of the government announcements is still to work through. But practical steps need to be taken now.
1. Today we will be varying your employment contract under Government instructions due to Coronavirus (COVID-19).
2. We will not be working during this period which is expected to last three months or more.
3. At this stage you will not be made redundant. We are not laying you off work.
4. CPL will be placing all of you into what is called a “furloughed workers” state from today.
5. HMRC will reimburse 80% of furloughed workers wage costs, up to a cap of £2,500 per month. HMRC are working urgently to set up a system for reimbursement. We think this will take until end of April and should last for 3 months or until we can re-open.
6. We believe (but this needs to be confirmed) that we will take an average of your last 16 weeks pay and that this will form the average weekly pay. We have been informed that you will be receiving (once we have registered) 80% of that average income. CPL will be paying this.
7. We understand that we will be receiving a grant from the local authority to cover wages to be paid from next week, until the scheme above is available.
8. You will, at this stage, be paid for the hours worked between the period of Wednesday 19th to Friday 21st , next week (to be confirmed).
9. In addition (to be confirmed) we expect that you will get the balance of the average time you would have worked for the remainder of the normal working week, when we receive the grant from government. Hopefully, this too will happen next week.
Other matters;
1. Rent: as your job has been furloughed all landlords have been banned from evicting for a minimum of three months; you should consider asking for a reduction in rent or a rent holiday.
2. Mortgages; as you job is furloughed you may be able to apply for a 3 month mortgage holiday. You will need to repay this in future. We do not know the terms of this holiday or the repayment requirements but you can ask your mortgage company.
3. If you need evidence of being furloughed you can ask NAME our accountant for a letter of confirmation.
4. You can email me at any time with questions, concerns or worries. I will try to answer them for NAME
Obviously, as news develops this week the letter may need to be changed or varied. We are endeavouring to help our clients and contacts, but do please be aware that we can accept no liability for any errors or omissions.

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By MJTT
26th Mar 2020 15:07

The below came through from the ACCA:

"Suggested wording (drawn and adapted from the ACAS suggested content).
The furlough agreements should be in writing and it’s a good idea to include:
• the date furlough starts
• when it will be reviewed
• how to keep in contact during furlough,
• A statement that a worker will stay employed while they are furloughed, but they must not work.

Suggested letters

Letter 1

Dear xxx
As discussed, and [agreed/under terms of contract] to keep our business running we are placing a number of members of our team into the government backed Coronavirus Job Retention Scheme. This will allow us to keep you on the payroll and as a business we receive a grant of 80% of workers’ wages up to £2,500 a
month. We will be paying a salary of £xxxx

The date you will be placed under the scheme is xxx and it will be reviewed with you at xxx. We will keep in contact during the period by [insert method].
During this period you will stay employed but a condition of the scheme is that you must not undertake work
for our business.

Letter 2

Employee Name
Employee address
Re: Notice of Furlough
Dear [employee name],
We regret to inform you that because of the current level of work available as a result of COVID-19, we have opted to place you on furlough (temporary layoff) during the next [number] weeks. You are not authorised to work during the furlough without advance written authorisation from your [manager, supervisor, or director].
The furlough will begin on [date]. We are hopeful that we will be able to restore you to your prior position with our company on or around [date]. However, it is important to note that we reserve the right to change this date based on our business needs.
During this period:
1. You will retain your seniority with the company.
2. You may be eligible for unemployment benefits during this time.
3. [Remove if not applicable] If you have available holidays time that you would like to use during this time,
you are welcome to use such time, but are not required to do so. If you would like to use some or all of your
available holidays during this time, contact [insert name].
4. It is important to us that your transition into furlough and back to work goes as smoothly as possible.
Therefore, if you have any questions or concerns regarding these transitions, contact [insert name].
We very much appreciate your contributions to the organisation this year. We wish you all the best during this unprecedented time and are looking forward to your return to work following this furlough period.
Best regards,
HR Department/Director
Company name"

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By atleastisoundknowledgable...
26th Mar 2020 15:18

I’ve not had that - did you get it by email?

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News Feed
By SUZIB
31st Mar 2020 14:18

BEFORE USING THIS LETTER, PLEASE NOTE: This template letter is intended for use to put employees on furlough in accordance with the Government’s Coronavirus Job Retention Scheme and is based on the official guidance available as at 27 March 2020. Wording in square brackets will require tailoring to reflect your company’s approach. We have included some brief drafting notes in red text for your information, which should be removed prior to sending this letter to employees.

Dear [Employee Name]

FURLOUGH LEAVE

We are writing to you [further to the Company’s recent announcement] regarding the impact of the COVID-19 virus on the business, which means that we now need to seek your agreement to vary the terms of your contract of employment with the Company. This is so that we can implement and take advantage of the Government’s Coronavirus Job Retention Scheme (the Scheme).

NOTE: The following paragraph provides the option for the employer to place the employee on furlough leave from a specified future date, or for the employee’s furlough leave to be backdated. Backdating would be appropriate if you are furloughing employees whom you had laid off without pay, or made redundant, after 28 February 2020. The earliest date to which furlough can be backdated is 1 March 2020. (Note that 2020 is a leap year, but the Government guidance does not seem to make provision for 29 February!)
[EITHER: You will be placed on ‘Furlough Leave’ from [DATE].] [OR: You will be treated as having been placed on ‘Furlough Leave’ from [DATE not earlier than 1 March 2020].] This means that your contract of employment continues, but you are not required to work. During the period of Furlough Leave, we will pay you [EITHER: 100% of your pay] / [OR: 80% of your pay up to a maximum of £2,500 per month, excluding any fees, commission, or bonus, calculated in accordance with the terms of the Scheme (your Furlough Pay)]. [For salaried employees if you are not committing to pay 100% of pay: Your Furlough Pay will be based on 80% of your gross salary as at 28 February 2020.] [For employees with variable pay who have been employed for at least one year, if you are not committing to pay 100% of pay: Your Furlough Pay will be based on 80% of the higher of your earnings in the same month last year, or your average earnings in the 2019/20 tax year.] [For employees with variable pay who have been employed for less than one year, if you are not committing to pay 100% of pay: Your Furlough Pay will be based on 80% of your average earnings during your employment with the Company.] Your Furlough Pay will be subject to deductions for tax and employee national insurance contributions [and employee pension contributions]. As far as practicable, payments will be made on your normal pay days. During Furlough Leave, your continuity of employment will continue.
NOTE: This letter includes the option for the employer to pay 80% or 100% of the employee’s pay. This is because Government guidance states that employers may choose to fund the difference between the amount they receive under the Scheme and the employee’s full pay, but they do not have to do so.

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