Furlough scheme extension to March 2021 and further self employment grant increase

PM Rishi Sunak,

An extension of the furlough scheme into Spring 2021, has been announced by the Chancellor today, (November 5).

The Coronavirus Job Retention Scheme (CJRS) will now run until the end of March 2021 with employees receiving 80% of their current salary for hours not worked.

Support through the Self-Employment Income Support Scheme (SEISS) will be increased, with the third grant covering November to January calculated at 80% of average trading profits, up to a maximum of £7,500.

Chancellor of the Exchequer Rishi Sunak said: ”I’ve always said I would do whatever it takes to protect jobs and livelihoods across the UK – and that has meant adapting our support as the path of the virus has changed.

“It’s clear the economic effects are much longer lasting for businesses than the duration of any restrictions, which is why we have decided to go further with our support.

“Extending furlough and increasing our support for the self-employed will protect millions of jobs and give people and businesses the certainty they need over what will be a difficult winter.”

The furlough scheme was initially extended until  December 2.

There are currently no employer contribution to wages for hours not worked. Employers will only be asked to cover National Insurance and employer pension contributions for hours not worked.

For an average claim, this accounts for 5% of total employment costs or £70 per employee per month. The CJRS extension will be reviewed in January to examine whether the economic circumstances are improving enough for employers to be asked to increase contributions.

Other financial support includes:

  • cash grants of up to £3,000 per month for businesses which are closed worth more than £1 billion every month
  • £1.1 billion is being given to Local Authorities, distributed on the basis of £20 per head, for one-off payments to enable them to support businesses more broadly
  • plans to extend existing government-backed loan schemes and the Future Fund to the end of January, and an ability to top-up Bounce Back Loans
  • an extension to the mortgage payment holiday for homeowners
  • up to £500 million of funding for councils to support the local public health response

National restrictions have come into force across England today (November 5)


  1. Over 3 million self-employed or short term PAYE getting no support at all.

    No consistency from government. Still, let’s throw a few more quid at Dido Harding…

    Short the pound, long Bitcoin

  2. I’m really grateful for the self employed support crumbs the govt throw at us after many of us sole traders decided not to put our extra strain on unemployment and instead make our own work but…. those of us forced to abandon tax credits for universal credit in order to get housing benefit in March/April, still have to give back 63% of our HMRC SEISS to universal credits in the following months calculations. And then pay tax on it if we earn enough. This means we actually gain 37p for every £1
    After rent deducted from UC for those with no dependents, that 37 % of govt support we are allowed to keep goes towards propping up anything from Max £350 per month (if we took advance uc) downwards by rent shortfall. Best bet leaves only appx £400 pcm
    Who can live on that?! And why do we get it with one hand and give it back with the other?!

  3. Who gets what, to tide them over? Different schemes for the employed, the self-employed, for those on Universal Credit, for those who are off sick(with or without Covid) or those who cannot work because they are self-isolating for the protection of us all.

    Why not cut out all the confusion and have a standard Universal Basic Income for everybody. Agree it in Parliament. Set it at the kind of rate that most people could survive on.
    And give it to EVERYBODY.
    If concerned at the idea, we could pay it for a specified “emergency” period, say 6 months. And then review it.
    But it would be a element of certainty and clarity in the current mess of confusion about how we can survive.

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