1. What does it mean to take Furlough Leave?
-If you agree to take Furlough Leave, you will not be able to carry out any work for us at all during the period of your Leave. We will pay you in accordance with the Furlough Agreement. This will allow you to receive 80% of your pay before tax, up to a limit of £2,500 per month, and a statutory minimum employer’s pension contribution. If we are able to offer more generous terms, this will be set out in the Furlough Agreement.
2. How long will I be on Furlough Leave for?
-In the accompanying agreement, we are asking you to agree to go onto Furlough Leave until the end of May 2020, which is the date the government has guaranteed to fund the scheme up to at present.
3. When will my Furlough Leave start?
-It will start on the date set out in the Furlough Agreement. This will normally be the first day on which you did no work for us. The agreement will have retrospective effect back to that date if you have already stopped working for us.
4. What are the conditions for qualifying for Furlough Leave?
-We can only place you on Furlough Leave if you were employed by us on 28 February 2020 and you are paid by us through PAYE. There may be alternative government help available for people who don’t meet these conditions.
-5. What deductions will be made from my Furlough Leave payments? We will have to deduct income tax, employee National Insurance contributions and employee pension contributions in the normal way. Any other contractual deductions such as repayment of a company loan will continue as normal, unless we agree to change the repayment terms.
6. Can I do voluntary work to help the NHS or other vital services during my Furlough Leave?
-You can apply to us for Emergency Volunteer Leave. Our understanding at present is that if we grant this, it will not affect your Furlough Leave payments.
7. I am currently self-isolating because I or someone in my household has symptoms of Coronavirus. When can I go onto Furlough Leave?
-You will not be able to start Furlough Leave until your period of self-isolation has ended. You will be paid SSP (or contractual sick pay if applicable) while period of self-isolation continues.
8. I am currently “shielding” at home for 12 weeks because I have a serious medical condition. Am I eligible to be considered for Furlough Leave?
-Yes, the scheme allows people who are shielding to be placed on Furlough Leave.
9. I have more than one employer. Can I take Furlough Leave if I am continuing to do my other job?
-You can be put on Furlough Leave by one employer and continue to work for another, if it is permitted within your employment contract. If you’re put on Furlough Leave by more than one employer, you’ll receive separate payments from each employer.
10.I am currently on another type of long-term leave, such as Maternity Leave or Adoption Leave. Can I take Furlough Leave?
-It may be possible to end your other type of leave early with our agreement. You should not do so without discussing with us whether we are likely to have work for you if you do that. If you ended your other type of leave early and we had no work for you, it should be possible to put you on Furlough Leave.
11.What if I refuse to go on Furlough Leave?
If we have the contractual right to lay you off without pay, we may have to consider doing so if you are not prepared to accept Furlough Leave. If we did lay you off without pay, you would be entitled to a Statutory Guarantee Payment of £29 per normal working day for the first week of lay off, but would have to apply for state benefits thereafter. In other cases, we may have to consider a range of alternative options. We cannot rule out the possibility that this might include considering compulsory redundancy, however, this is not our preferred or intended option at present. We cannot give you personal advice on what is the best choice for you, but we expect that going onto Furlough Leave is likely to be the best short-term financial option for most employees who we have no work for.