Many will not be able to work from home, while others will lose their jobs while entire industries are stalled. But many companies will be reluctant to let their employees disappear completely and will instead choose to put their workers in a suspended state, on leave.
Not all of this is bad news for those in the job, as Chancellor Rishi Sunak has promised that the government will pay up to 80% of wages, up to £ 2,500 a month to keep people in their jobs.
Personal finance reporter Jessica Beard was there to answer your additional questions. Read on for a selection of the best questions and answers.
Do companies have to show reduced work to get government subsidy?
The job retention program does not actually require employers to prove that they are in financial difficulty, but it was intended to help businesses survive while keeping their employees in employment. Ultimately, the decision to put staff on leave rests entirely with the employer.
What if I started a new job after the deadline (February 28)?
Unfortunately, anyone who started working in their current business on March 1 or after will not be eligible for the government subsidy if they are put on leave. This means that you would not receive any salary. The Chancellor gives little indication of what can be done for people who were in between jobs.
Universal credit is your best option right now, despite the longer wait times. You can ask for a universal credit advance if you think you will be having trouble paying your bills, but you will need to explain why you need the advance.
What protection will there be after three months?
The government’s job retention program lasts for three months from March 1. However, the Treasury has made it clear that it will be reviewed and could be extended if necessary. It all depends on the duration of the lock.
Can you be laid off during your leave?
Technically, yes. Your employer may decide to fire you during this period, but if it is already receiving government subsidy money to pay 80 percent of your salary, it makes little difference to him. It all depends on whether they want to keep you on the payroll so that you can continue your work once it is all over.
Can I legally work for another company in the event of leave?
Companies use leave as an alternative to dismissal. This is a way to keep employees on the payroll without paying wages for a number of leaves when the employee is not working. So, generally speaking, no, you cannot work elsewhere during this period because your contract is still valid.
Most contracts will require the consent of the employer to work for other companies, which should apply to authorization leave. That said, nothing prevents you from checking with your employers. They can be more understanding if an employee is just supplementing the income that is lost due to layoff if done outside of your normal working hours.
The need for your employer’s consent ensures to some extent that employees do not earn much more on leave, with almost double pay, than during a normal period of employment. If everyone was able to do it, the government grant would not be necessary.
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