Further detail on HMRC publication of employer furlough claims

Further detail on HMRC publication of employer furlough claims

Updated Treasury Direction on Coronavirus Job Retention Scheme

The government updated its guidance on the Coronavirus Job Retention Scheme (CJRS) on 2 December 2020 to give further details of the information that HMRC will publish about employers who apply for grants under the CJRS.

In order to be transparent and deter fraudulent claims, HMRC have said they will publish certain information about those who make claims for periods starting on or after 1 December 2020.

This information will be published on gov.uk and will include:

  • The employer’s name
  • An indication of value of the claim within a banded range – bands start at £1-£10,000 and increase in size up to £100,000,001 and above
  • Company number of companies and LLPs

The inclusion of the bands may give some comfort to employers who are worried about the PR aspects of claiming under the CJRS. For example, where an employer is financially stable, but has employees who cannot work due to childcare responsibilities or because they are clinically extremely vulnerable, they may still legitimately wish to use the CJRS, rather than take the option of nil pay. Such an employer may be able to use the CJRS for this purpose without negative publicity where they can show they are in a low band and therefore not taking advantage of public money in an unjustified way. 

HMRC have confirmed that they will not publish details of employers if they can show that doing so would result in a serious risk of violence or intimidation to certain individuals (e.g. directors or employees of a company or an individual employer) or to anyone who lives with them. Employers who wish to rely on this will need to provide evidence of why there is a risk – possibly a police incident number or documentary evidence of a threat.

HMRC have also said that they will allow furloughed employees to access details of claims made for them, for claim periods starting on or after 1 December 2020. This will be set out in the employees’ personal tax account on gov.uk. This may also allow HMRC to track down fraudulent or incorrect claims.

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