By Sybille Steiner, employment partner at Irwin Mitchell

The Chancellor Rishi Sunak has today announced significant changes to the Job Support Scheme (JSS).

The JSS is due to replace furlough from the end of this month and the latest changes are designed to keep more people in work.

When the JSS was launched, it required employees to work a minimum of 33% of their normal hours. However to help businesses struggling with Covid-19 restrictions, this has now been reduced to 20%.

Additionally, the employer contribution to the unworked hours has been lowered to 5% from a third.

Using an example, the Chancellor said that if someone was being paid £587 for their unworked hours, the government would be contributing £543 and their employer only £44.

The scheme is available across the UK and is designed to protect viable jobs in businesses that are facing lower demand over the next few months due to Covid19. We are awaiting further guidance from the Government.

These changes to the JSS do not apply to businesses that are legally required to close.

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