Coronavirus Job Retention Scheme: deadlines

24 November 2020

The deadlines for submitting claims under the extension to the Coronavirus Job Retention Scheme (CJRS) have been shortened from the previous version of the scheme, so that they must be sent 14 calendar days after the month that is being claimed for.

It has been confirmed that, where this date falls on a weekend or a bank holiday, the deadline automatically becomes the next available working day. A helpful table has been produced by HMRC to show the deadlines for each month:

Claim for furlough days in

Claim must be submitted by

November 2020

14 December 2020

December 2020

14 January 2021

January 2021

15 February 2021

February 2021

15 March 2021

March 2021

14 April 2021

The deadlines have been implemented to ensure that the impact of coronavirus on both businesses and individuals can be more accurately assessed, and on a more regular basis. As of 31 August 2020, nearly £40 billion in grants had been paid out in grants through the CJRS and there is a need to continually observe the scheme to ensure that it is still effective, due to the cost to taxpayers.

HMRC has confirmed that the deadline does not affect an employer’s option of claiming in advance of paying their staff, and that they can claim before, during or after the processing of payroll, as long as the claim is submitted by the correct claim deadline.

In scenarios where a payroll run would not be complete by the 14th of the month following a claim, claimants are still expected to make a correct claim within the deadline. If a payroll period covers more than one calendar month, then the days that fall within each calendar month must be claimed by each relevant deadline.

Where an employer notices that their claim needs to be corrected at a later date, they are able to do so. If an underclaim has been submitted, then employers have until 28 days following the month of the claim to contact HMRC to get this adjustment made. Where businesses have claimed too much, this should be rectified at the point at which the issue is identified. This can be done by offsetting the overclaim amount from a subsequent claim, or if no further claims are to be made, by obtaining a payment reference number and paying HMRC back.

HMRC may accept a claim or amendment made after the appropriate deadline, where the employer had a reasonable excuse for failing to submit the claim or make the amendment in time. The employer must claim without delay when the excuse no longer applied but will not be able to agree with HMRC in advance to submit a late claim.

Businesses are reminded that the deadline for submitting claims up to and including 31 October 2020 is 30 November 2020.


The information in this article is accurate at the time of publication. For all the latest information, news and resources on how the COVID-19 pandemic is affecting payroll professions, visit our Coronavirus hub.