Furlough extension, extension of loan schemes and Budget 2021

18 Dec 2020

In a surprise announcement on 17 December the Chancellor Rishi Sunak announced the extension of the Job Retention (Furlough) Scheme from the previously announced closing date of 31 March to the end of April 2020.  Based on the announcement it appears the scheme will continue unchanged for the extra month and will continue to apply to all of the devolved administrations.    

At the same time the Government also announced that applications under the various Coronavirus loan schemes will now be open until 31 March 2021.  The schemes in question include the Bounce Back and Coronavirus Business Interruption loan schemes.  The schemes were originally planned to end on 31 January. 

The final announcement yesterday was that the 2021 Budget will take place on Wednesday 3 March at which time the Chancellor will deliver the next phase of the plan to tackle the virus and protect jobs.

WR Partners Comment

While clearly the further extension of the furlough and loan schemes is welcome news for struggling businesses it also seems to underline the notion that businesses can expect to face some form of Coronavirus related restrictions well into Spring next year.  It is also useful to have the Budget date confirmed this far out, but with much speculation about significant tax changes in the next Budget the timing does not leave individuals or businesses a great deal of time to respond to any changes that are announced.

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