HMRC has stepped up its compliance activity on Coronavirus Job Retention Scheme grants, writing to employers who may need to repay some or all of their claim.

We understand that HMRC has been risk assessing the Coronavirus Job Retention Scheme (CJRS) applications in real time but is now starting the next phase of its compliance activity, writing this week to about 3,000 employers it believes may need to repay some or all of their CJRS grant.

HMRC advises that these letters are going to cases where:

  • The business may have claimed more CJRS grant than they are entitled to
  • The business may not meet the conditions to receive a CJRS grant
  • for example, by including employees in their CJRS claim who are not eligible.

 

  1. What Does The HMRC Letter Cover?
  • The letter asks businesses to review their CJRS claims and to contact HMRC whether they think they have made a mistake or not.
    • Where we are appointed as your agents we should receive copies of the letters;
    • Please do not assume we will and let us know if you do receive anything;
    • Please liaise with Lisa Edwards (lise@barrons-bds.com ) before responding.

 

  1. What If HMRC Highlight That I May Have Misclaimed?
  • If any overpaid CJRS grant is repaid voluntarily within the appropriate time limit set by HMRC, the employer will not be charged a penalty for the error in their claim.
    • Please liaise with Lisa Edwards before any amendment are made and declarations set out should that prove to be the case.
  • It is clear that HMRC will take action against those that deliberately set out to defraud the system or claim money they are not entitled to.
    • However, we understand that it is not HMRC’s aim to target innocent errors.

 

  1. What If I Do Not Receive A Letter?
  • We are led to understand that these letters are the first stage of HMRC’s compliance approach and that more employers may be contacted in the future.

Barrons has put together a helpful guide to running your business during the coronavirus crisis.