Umbrella Companies | More news on the Job Retention Bonus Scheme

More news on the Job Retention Bonus Scheme

Yes, more news this week as those further details that we were promised back at the start of July about what was going to happen with the Job Retention Bonus Scheme Payments has finally been announced by the UK government.


As discussed in an earlier post, we were not sure if this bonus would apply to umbrella companies, but it appears that this is indeed the case.


The guidance document states: “Employers can claim the Job Retention Bonus for all employees who meet the above criteria, including office holders, company directors and agency workers, including those employed by umbrella companies.”


Good news, although that still gives no clarity on whether the person working under the umbrella company or the business hosting and servicing the umbrella company is eligible to make the claim.


The other criteria that must be met are:


  • You must have been furloughed and had a Coronavirus Job Retention Scheme claim submitted for them that meets all relevant eligibility criteria for the scheme
  • You must have been continuously employed by the relevant employer from the time of the employer’s most recent claim for that employee until at least 31 January 2021
  • You must have been paid an average of at least £520 a month between 1 November 2020 and 31 January 2021 (a total of at least £1,560 across the 3 months). The employee does not have to be paid £520 in each month, but must have received some earnings in each of the three calendar months that have been paid and reported to HMRC via RTI;
  • You must have up-to-date RTI records for the period to the end of January
  • You are not serving a contractual or statutory notice period, that started before 1 February 2021, for the employer making a claim


If you are eligible, you (or your employer) is eligible for £1000 one-off payment. But we still can’t tell you if you receive it yourself, if you are working via an umbrella company, or if they do, which isn’t fun. We do wonder if they have even thought about this themselves.


Under the circumstances, our advice is to check directly with HMRC and see what they can tell you. Then, when you have their take on things, go to your umbrella company provider and have a conversation with them too.


Clear? As with so many governmental dictates – the term ‘as mud’ springs to mind….

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