Furlough scheme employers named
28 January: HMRC has published its first list of the employers who have claimed through the Coronavirus Job Retention Scheme (CJRS). Being named is normal and the presumption is that those listed are using the funds as intended.
On 26 January HMRC published the names of employers that claimed grants under the CJRS during December. The data published does not include employers with a successful or pending application to have their details withheld, nor those which had paid back the whole grant before this list was produced.
HMRC will be publishing a similar list each month and from February it will also publish:
- an indication of the value of the previous month’s claim within a banded range, and
- the company number for companies and Limited Liability Partnerships.
For further details are available on gov.uk.
It may not be easy to identify an employer by the name used on the list because HMRC has used the name of the payroll scheme used by that employer. However, an employee would usually expect this name to be the one used on their payslips.
Moving forward, HMRC intends to use an individual’s Personal Tax Account (PTA) to tell employees where an employer has made a furlough claim for them. This might prove challenging now flexible furlough is allowed, but this would help to identify cases where the rules are abused.
Examples HMRC hopes to identify would be where an employee is furloughed but is then asked to work, or where an employee has been made redundant and then finds they are still being shown as furloughed in their PTA.
In asking an employee to report their employer, HMRC is clear that the information will be treated in the strictest confidence and little more than the employer name needs to be given. Employees and others making reports of suspicions are advised not to approach the employer themselves, but to merely report possible fraud to HMRC.
HMRC will check claims and payments may be withheld, or required to be paid back, if a claim is found to be fraudulent or based on incorrect information.