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Coronavirus Job Retention Scheme

Treasury written question – answered on 1st May 2020.

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Photo of Gareth Thomas Gareth Thomas Shadow Minister (International Trade)

To ask the Chancellor of the Exchequer, whether people employed by umbrella companies that are furloughed during the covid-19 outbreak will receive a sum based on 80 per cent of their average take home pay, rather than 80 per cent of the average of their basic pay; and if he will make a statement.

Photo of Vicky Foxcroft Vicky Foxcroft Shadow Minister (Work and Pensions)

To ask the Chancellor of the Exchequer, whether he has plans to amend the calculation of Coronavirus Job Retention Scheme claims to include the gross pay of employees whose salaries are topped up through bonuses or tronc schemes.

Photo of Barbara Keeley Barbara Keeley Labour, Worsley and Eccles South

To ask the Chancellor of the Exchequer, whether he has plans to expand furlough payments to cover a proportion of (a) performance-related pay and (b) sales commission up to a cap.

Photo of Daniel Zeichner Daniel Zeichner Shadow Minister (Environment, Food and Rural Affairs)

To ask the Chancellor of the Exchequer, if he will take steps to extend the furlough scheme so that workers who usually receive tips receive 80 per cent of their monthly net tip earnings averages over the last three years.

Photo of Chris Elmore Chris Elmore Opposition Whip (Commons), Shadow Minister (Scotland)

To ask the Chancellor of the Exchequer, what assessment the Government has made of the potential merits of allowing employers to include a proportion of employees wages which are earned through bonuses or commission in claims to the Coronavirus Job Retention Scheme.

Photo of Jesse Norman Jesse Norman The Financial Secretary to the Treasury

The objective of the Coronavirus Job Retention Scheme is to enable employers to continue to keep people in employment. To achieve this, the grants compensate employers for the payments that they are contractually obliged to make, in order to avoid the need for redundancies. Covering discretionary payments would go beyond the objectives of the scheme. Full guidance on how to calculate 80% of wages can be found at: www.gov.uk/guidance/work-out-80-of-your-employees-wages-to-claim-through-the-coronavirus-job-retention-scheme

For some employees, the pay in scope for the grant will be less than the overall sum they usually receive. The Government is also supporting those on low incomes who need to rely on the welfare system through a significant package of temporary welfare measures. This includes a £20 per week increase to the Universal Credit standard allowance and Working Tax Credit basic element, and a nearly £1 billion increase in support for renters through increases to the Local Housing Allowance rates for Universal Credit and Housing Benefit claimants. These changes will benefit all new and existing claimants. Anyone can check their eligibility and apply for Universal Credit by visiting www.gov.uk/universal-credit.

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