Your rights when on furlough
If you’re facing the possibility of being furloughed, or you already have been, it’s important that you understand your rights and entitlements. The government provides more information about this here.
5. Can I ask to be put on furlough?
If you're worried about the security of your job, you can ask your employer to consider putting you on furlough. This could help their company keep costs down, whilst making it possible for you to return to work when the coronavirus crisis has calmed down.
However, the decision is ultimately up your employer so they have the right to deny your request to be furloughed.
6. Can I refuse to be put on furlough?
Your employer has the right to decide which employees to put on furlough. It's recommended that they ask for volunteers first, but if enough people don't volunteer, it's up to your employer to decide who should be furloughed.
7. Can I work to boost my income on furlough?
If you're on furlough, although you're not currently working, you are still employed. This means that any rules set out in your employment contract still apply.
Check your contract to see if it allows you to work elsewhere when employed by the company, or contact your employer to check.
Boosting your income and filling your new spare time with another job may sound appealing, but if you break the terms of your existing contract with your employer you risk facing disciplinary action and put your current job at risk.
8. I'm on furlough, can I get help with money?
If you need urgent help with money to pay for food and other essentials, find out what help is available here.
If you're worried about your financial situation as a result of coronavirus, you can find out more about the help available in our coronavirus information hub, which is updated daily with the latest developments.
9. What if I'm not eligible for furloughing?
If you're not eligible for furloughing and aren't being paid at all during this period, you can claim Universal Credit. Read our guide to coronavirus, benefits and statutory sick pay.
10. What happens when furloughing ends?
The Job Support Scheme (JSS) will be put in place by the government to help protect people's jobs if their employer is struggling with the impact of coronavirus on their business. It will do this by helping employers to keep paying their staff, and aim to reduce the risk of job loss.
The scheme is planned to begin when furloughing comes to an end. This will be at the end of September 2021 at the earliest. When it starts, it will run for six months.
11. I'm self-employed, what help is available?
The existing Self-Employment Income Support Scheme is being extended for six months, from 1 November 2020 to April 2021.
If you're self-employed, this means you could be eligible for two lump-sum grant payments, each covering three months:
- Grant 1 - covering 1 November to 31 January 2021 - This taxable grant will cover 80% of your monthly profits. It is one payment that will cover three months' profits, up to a maximum of £7,500 in total
- Grant 2 - covering 1 February 2021 to 30 April 2021 - The second grant will also be paid in one lump-sum to cover the full three-month period. However, the Government hasn't confirmed how much this grant will be yet
You can also consider applying for Universal Credit to help you through this difficult time. Read our guide to coronavirus, benefits and statutory sick pay.