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The Chancellor, Rishi Sunak, has announced that the furlough scheme will be extended to the end of March 2021.

It will be based on 80% of hours not worked by an employee with a cap of £2,500 and with the employers responsible for national insurance and pension contributions for hours not worked.

The Chancellor will review the position in January 2021 to determine whether additional contributions will be made by employers as it had done under the earlier furlough scheme when it was coming to an end in October 2020.

As with the previous furlough scheme, restrictions apply if you are in receipt of government funding and this applies principally to GP practices and Dentists with NHS patients but with some exceptions possibly for staff involved with private patients.

The previously announced job support scheme that was to replace the furlough scheme will no longer be implemented as the furlough scheme has been extended.

The Job Retention bonus of £1,000 per employee for previously furloughed employees who are retained until the end of January 2021 will be deferred until a later date due to furlough being extended.

Additional support for the self-employed which is applicable mainly to self-employed GP locums and any purely private self-employed consultants may also be available.