January Newsletter – Job Retention Scheme and New Payroll Rates
As we settle into the new year and lockdown 3.0, make yourself a cuppa and catch up on the latest payroll and Pay Check news.
Updates to the Coronavirus Job Retention Scheme
A reminder that employers who are affected by this third lockdown can create furlough agreements with their employees and claim the Coronavirus Job Retention Scheme - check if you qualify here:
There are a few updates to the guidance:
The Coronavirus Job Retention Scheme has been extended until 30 April 2021.
Claims for furlough days in December 2020 must be made by 14 January 2021 - the same deadline of the 14th will apply each month going forward.
You can no longer submit claims for claim periods ending on or before 31 October 2020.
From February, as part of HMRC’s commitment to transparency and to deter fraudulent claims, HMRC will publish information about employers who claim for periods starting on or after 1 December 2020.
Employees who cannot work due to being extremely clinically vulnerable, or have childcare commitments due to the third lockdown forcing school closures, can be furloughed.
Employees with an annual pay period can be furloughed and claimed for if an RTI was submitted between 20th March 2020 and 30th October 2020.
You can watch videos and webinars on all the guidance here:
New statutory rates and allowances for FY2122 starting 6th April 2021
Whilst the Lower Earnings Level has yet to be confirmed the weekly rates for Parental leave have been confirmed at £151.97, this covers Maternity, Adoption, Paternity, Parental Bereavement and Shared Parental Pay.
Statutory sick pay has increased to £96.35.
Whilst not yet officially published by .GOV yet, it is expected that the new personal tax allowance in FY2122 will be £12,570.
Tax Easement for Cycle to Work Schemes
The tax exemption for the employer provision of cycles and cyclist’s safety equipment was introduced to support employers in promoting healthier journeys to work and to encourage green commuting. Many employers offer this in the form of Cycle to Work schemes.
One of the conditions of the exemption is that the cycling equipment provided should be used mainly for qualifying journeys (to or from work or in the course of work).
The Government’s COVID-19 restrictions have required many employees to work from home where possible. Therefore, many existing users of the scheme are not travelling to work and may be unable to meet the condition for qualifying journeys. Under the current application of the rules, these individuals would become liable to an income tax Benefit in Kind charge.
However, the Government will introduce a time limited easement to disapply the condition which states that cycles must be used mainly for qualifying journeys. The easement will apply to existing users and will allow those individuals to continue to benefit from the tax exemption without needing to meet the qualifying journeys condition.
The easement will be available to employees who have joined a scheme and have been provided with a cycle or cycling equipment on or before 20 December 2020. The easement will be in place until 5 April 2022, after which the normal rules of the exemption will apply.
Pay Check Company News
We are delighted to have welcomed seven extremely experienced associate and senior staff members to the team in the final months of 2020, giving a huge boost to productivity as we come to the end of our two year technical evolution project.
We are excited to say that by March 2021 we will have migrated all our clients to our cloud based payroll software, Brain Payroll. This new system has already opened up many ways to improve our service offering with plenty more in our roadmap for this year, the first of which will be a much improved client and employee portal which all clients on the older portals will be upgraded to in due course.
One of our longest serving team members, Tesa Stow, moves into her new role this month as Head of Client Services. Tesa would love to hear any feedback or thoughts you have on our service - please email her on firstname.lastname@example.org
Pay Check have had a huge start to 2021, winning Leading Providers of Payroll Outsourcing Services” in the Greater London Enterprise Awards!
Trusted Business Community Association
Pay Check are delighted to have been invited to the Trusted Business Community Association and awarded their "Badge of Trust", having passed their assessment through a review of our services, recommendation from an external source, and validation based on our insurances and ISO certification.