Advice Column: Job Retention Scheme extension

Thursday 29th April

As part of the Citizens Advice Exeter and The Express and Echo weekly advice column, this week we focus on the Government extension to the Coronavirus Job Retention Scheme.


I have previously been furloughed by my employer because of Coronavirus. I hear that the furlough scheme has been extended. What does this mean and what are the new rules?


The Government had announced that the Coronavirus Job Retention Scheme (CJRS), has been extended until the 30th September 2021.


If your employer cannot maintain their workforce because their operations have been affected by coronavirus (COVID-19), they can put you on furlough and apply for a grant to cover a portion of your usual monthly wage costs (only for time you are on furlough).


All employers with a UK, Isle of Man or Channel Island bank account and a UK PAYE scheme can claim the grant. They do not need to have previously claimed for you before 30 October 2020. Employers can furlough employees for any amount of time and with any working pattern, and can still claim the grant for hours not worked.


You can be on any type of employment contract, including full-time, part-time, agency, flexible or zero-hour contracts. You can be furloughed if you’re a foreign national and meet the eligibility criteria.


Your employer is responsible for claiming through the scheme on your behalf and for paying you what you’re entitled to. You cannot apply for the scheme yourself.


Your employer should discuss this with you and make any changes to your employment contract by agreement. When your employer is making decisions in relation to the process, including deciding who to offer furlough to, equality and discrimination laws will apply in the usual way.


They do not need to place all their employees on furlough, and they can fully furlough employees if they wish. You cannot undertake any work for your employer during time that is recorded as you being on furlough. However, you can:


  • take part in training
  • volunteer for another employer or organisation
  • work for another employer (if contractually allowed)


For the most up to date information and advice visit: GOV.UK


The information contained in these articles does not constitute advice. Citizens Advice Exeter and The Express and Echo accept no liability for the information published. Citizens Advice Exeter is unable to respond to individual requests for advice through these columns. Copyright Citizens Advice. For the most up-to-date information, please visit