HMRC’s guidance on making claims through the Coronavirus Job Retention Scheme was updated on 19 November 2020. The updated guidance now includes various examples of what is meant by a ‘reasonable excuse’ for employers that submit furlough claims after the stated deadline. Claims for the periods from 1 July 2020 to 31 October 2020 must be submitted no later than 30 November 2020.
From 1 November 2020, claims must be submitted by 11.59pm 14 calendar days after the end of the previous calendar month. If a claim deadline falls on the weekend or a bank holiday then claims should be submitted on the next working day. For example, the claim deadline for furlough days during November must be submitted by 14 December 2020.
HMRC may accept a claim made after the deadline if you had a reasonable excuse for failing to make a claim in time.
HMRC’s list of example excuses is as follows:
- your partner or another close relative died shortly before the claim deadline
- you had an unexpected stay in hospital that prevented you from dealing with your claim
- you had a serious or life-threatening illness, including Coronavirus related illnesses, which prevented you from making your claim (and no one else could claim for you)
- a period of self-isolation prevented you from making your claim (and no one else could make the claim for you)
- your computer or software failed just before or while you were preparing your online claim
- service issues with HMRC online services prevented you from making your claim
- a fire, flood or theft prevented you from making your claim
- postal delays that you could not have predicted prevented you from making your claim
- delays related to a disability you have prevented you from making your claim
- a HMRC error prevented you from making your claim
Please do not hesitate to call if you need any assistance with your furlough-related obligations.