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Government publishes revised Coronavirus Job Retention Scheme legislation

The government recently published revised legislation on the Coronavirus Job Retention Scheme (CJRS).

On 22 May, Chancellor Rishi Sunak altered CJRS legislation to reflect the extension of the scheme. On 12 May, the Chancellor announced an extension to the CJRS until the end of October and confirmed that employees will continue to receive 80% of their monthly wages, up to £2,500. However, Mr Sunak said companies will need to start sharing the cost of the scheme from August.

The changes to the CJRS are needed to ensure the scheme 'works as intended'. The Treasury Direction submitted by the government outlines that the written agreement between an employee and their employer for the employee to cease all work must be retained by the employer until at least 30 June 2025.

The agreement must specify the main terms and conditions; be assimilated into the employee's contract; and be made or confirmed in writing.

The Treasury Direction also stipulates that any training activities undertaken by an employee must not provide a service to the employer or generate income for the employer.

Additionally, where an employee was employed by a former employer in a qualifying Pay as You Earn (PAYE) scheme on 28 February 2020, the Direction now permits the new employer to claim a CJRS grant where a Real Time Information (RTI) submission was made on or before 19 March 2020.