The UK Government’s Coronavirus job retention scheme has opened for applications this morning (Monday 20 April) and Isles MP Angus B MacNeil is sharing the step-by-step guide employers need to make their claim to HMRC.

The seven-page guide can be found at www.gov.uk/government/publications/coronavirus-job-retention-scheme-step-by-step-guide-for-employers 

The guide for employers is intended to streamline the application process, so that the huge weight of applications expected today can be processed as swiftly and efficiently as possible. 

Under the Coronavirus job retention scheme, businesses can claim up to 80% of an employee’s salary, up to a cap of £2,500 per month, allowing the employee to be furloughed and to return to work once the crisis is over.

Mr MacNeil said: “There is no doubt that businesses are under pressure during this pandemic and, with April’s payday fast approaching, it is good to see that the Coronavirus job retention scheme is now open for applications.

“It is essential that the application process runs smoothly to avoid adding further pressure to businesses.”

The guide answers questions that employers may have and lays out the information needed before an application is made. Also available is a general guidance note at www.gov.uk/guidance/claim-for-wage-costs-through-the-coronavirus-job-retention-scheme and a series of webinars on YouTube.

HMRC also has telephone support, but they have fewer advisors available than usual due to distancing measures at their call centre. They said: “Please support HMRC in keeping our lines open for those who need our help most. Do not call us unless you have an issue that cannot be resolved using our guidance or webchat facility.”