On 23 August 2021, Revenue published an updated Employment Wage Subsidy Scheme (EWSS) guide. In today’s blog post we will do a short recap on the recent developments to the EWSS, the updates in the new guide and the implications thereof for employers currently claiming under the EWSS.
Online Eligibility Test
As discussed in our previous blog post on the topic, employers are required to complete an online employer Eligibility Review Form (ERF) through ROS on a monthly basis, by the 15th of each following month in order to remain eligible to claim EWSS.
Compliance with Extended Online Eligibility Checks
The June 2021 period was used as the first ERF to assess eligibility for pay dates from 1 July 2021 and this should have been completed and submitted online by employers intending to claim EWSS. Employers were required to submit:
- details of actual turnover (excluding VAT) for the first 6 months of 2019 and 2021; and
- monthly projections for the remaining 6 months of 2021.
Revenue previously provided an extension in the deadline for submitting both the June and July Eligibility Review Forms (ERFs) to 15 August 2021. With effect from 1 September 2021, EWSS subsidies will be suspended for those employers whose ERFs from June and July are still outstanding.
Continued Review / Withdrawal from EWSS
This eligibility review must be undertaken on a rolling monthly basis and will continue to consist of comparing the actual and projected business performance over the period January to December 2021 for pay dates, as illustrated in the updated EWSS guide.
On the 15th of every subsequent month during this period, employers will need to provide details of the actual monthly figures for the previous month, together with a reviewed original projection provided to ensure they remain valid. This can be summarised as follows:
|Submission Due Date||Actual Monthly Figures to be returned||Projected Monthly Figured to be returned|
|15 August 2021(closed)||January to December 2019
January to June 2021
|July to December 2021|
|15 August 2021(closed)||July 2021||August to December 2021|
|15 September 2021||August 2021||September to December 2021|
|15 October 2021||September 2021||October and December 2021|
|15 November 2021||October 2021||November to December 2021|
|15 December 2021||November 2021||December 2021|
Failure to Submit
Revenue has reminded employers that the monthly online eligibility process is mandatory for employers who wish to claim, or continue to claim, in terms of the EWSS. Employers who do not submit their figures by the prescribed due date(s) will be at risk of having their EWSS payments put on hold and will have to flag this with Revenue to resolve.
Employers who are currently at risk of having their claims frozen will be notified directly by Revenue.
Annualising of Turnover
As mentioned in a previous blog, the total turnover for businesses which commenced between 1 January and 1 October 2021 for 2019 was annualised by ROS and this may have resulted in some employers incorrectly being deemed eligible or ineligible.
Employers who are satisfied that their monthly figures are correct and that they qualify in terms of the requirements of EWSS should continue to sign and submit their ERF and contact Revenue via MyEnquiries to ensure timely payment.
In contrast, any employer who is incorrectly deemed eligible should deregister for EWSS and cease claiming subsidies.
It should be noted that employers with a number of separate business divisions should submit one ERF each month incorporating the information for all eligible businesses.
Detailed Guidance on Completing an ERF Appendix I of the updated EWSS guide contains a detailed overview, with screenshots, of how to complete the EWSS Eligibility Review Form on ROS and should be referred to by any employers still struggling with the process.
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