News | Published April 20 2020

Furlough scheme goes live, millions claim

The government furlough scheme has gone live this morning, with almost 70,000 claimants in the first half hour.

The Coronavirus Job Retention Scheme, introduced by chancellor Rishi Sunak, provides 80 per cent of employees’ wages up to the sum of £2,500 if they are placed on leave. It is at the discretion of their employer as to whether or not they provide the remaining 20 per cent.

It is expected that millions of workers in the UK will be furloughed as a result of Covid-19. According to the ONS, over one fifth of people have been furloughed since the beginning of the pandemic.

Sunak said that: "We promised support would be available by the end of April - today, we deliver our promise."

According to the Treasury, the HMRC system is able to process some 450,000 applications in an hour. Those employers who apply will receive the money they request within six working days.

Chief executive of HMRC, Jim Harra said that: "The big payroll date this month is on the 30th, so employers can claim anytime today, tomorrow or on Wednesday, and there's time to get that money into their account for the 30th of April."

Sunak announced an extension to the furloughing scheme until the end of June, following a government announcement that the UK lockdown will continue for another three weeks at a minimum.

The Office for Budget Responsibility estimate that the furloughing scheme will cost the country around £42 billion. Harra declined to comment.

Related Stories

Authored by

Alice Jaspars
Culture Editor
April 20 2020

Featured Organisations

St Michael's Catholic High School

Having been part of a team – finally as head teacher – that took a South London school from “special measures” to one of the most improved schools in ... Read more

The Senate Group

There is a tendency to assume that security risk means cyber risk or possibly a bomb threat. The Senate Group take a more pragmatic, comprehensive vie... Read more

Haydon School

Based in Hillingdon, London, is Haydon School, a mixed secondary school with a sixth form. Commitment to their vision – “Individual excellence in a ca... Read more

Latest News

Ministers open-minded about vaccine passports