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Covid-19 Update - 17th July 2020

Friday, 17 July 2020

Dear All,

Please could you advise whether you will be continuing to make a Furlough Claims for July for your employees.  It would be great if you could notify me by Monday 20th July as claims need to be in next week.

Last week the government announced a raft of new measures to cope with Covid-19.  Not all will apply to you but I have summarised the main points below:

Job Retention Bonus for furloughed workers:

Job Retention Bonus will be introduced to help firms retain furloughed workers. UK Employers will receive a one-off bonus of £1,000 for each furloughed employee who is still employed at 31 January 2021. To qualify, the employee must earn a minimum of £520 a month.


This scheme applies from 1 August 2020 to 31 January 2021.

Businesses will receive £2,000 for each new apprentice under the age of 25 that they hire. This will be in addition to the existing £1,000 payment the Government already provides for new 16-18-year-old apprentices and for those aged under 25 with an Education, Health and Care Plan.

Kickstart Scheme:

A timescale has not yet been announced for this measure.

Those aged 16-24 claiming Universal Credit and at risk of long-term unemployment will be eligible.

Funding will be available for each six-month job placement and will cover 100% of the National Minimum Wage for 25 hours a week. Employers will be able to top this wage up.

The minimum wage hourly rates from 1st April 2020 are:

  • Age 25 and over £8.72
  • Age 21 to 24 £8.20
  • Age 18 to 20 £6.45
  • Age under 18 £4.55

Green Investment:

Homeowners and landlords in England will be able to apply for vouchers from a £2 billion Green Homes Grant scheme this year to pay for improvements such as loft, wall and floor insulation. This could save some households hundreds of pounds a year on their energy bills and create thousands of jobs for tradespeople.

A timescale has not yet been announced for this measure.

Eat Out to Help Out discount scheme:

Designed to encourage people to return to eating out, the Government’s new Eat Out to Help Out discount scheme will provide a 50% reduction (up to a maximum of £10 per head) for sit-down, eat-in meals in cafes, restaurants and pubs across the UK from Monday to Wednesday every week throughout August 2020.

This reduction will include non-alcoholic drinks, but will NOT include alcoholic drinks. The discount applies to any participating restaurant, café, pub or other eligible food service establishment.

The discount can be used unlimited times for the entire month of August 2020 across the UK. Participating establishments will be fully reimbursed for the 50% discount.

I have already notified our clients who can take advantage of this and who will need to register as participants.  As customers you may be interested in this as well!!

VAT reduction on most tourism and hospitality related activities:

For the period from 15th July 2020 to 12th January 2021 a reduced (5%) rate of VAT will apply to:

  • Food and non-alcoholic drinks supplied by restaurants, pubs, bars, cafés and similar premises across the UK.
  • Accommodation costs and admission to attractions across the UK.

This will mean a mixture of VAT Rates to administer.

Finally, a reminder that the Self-Employment Taxable Grant can be applied for in August.  This will cover 70% of earnings instead of 80% as before.  Look out for notification from HMRC that you can apply.  Yet again, we cannot apply for you.  If you need advice please let us know.

Best Regards

David Turner