Update on changes to Covid-19 Support Schemes
- Changes Announced
Further changes have been announced to help businesses that were directly impacted by the public health regulations imposed from 20 December 2021 to 22 January 2022.
We summarise below the key developments and relevant updates to Revenue Guidelines. We will provide further updates as more details are published.
Businesses availing of the EWSS that were directly impacted by the public health regulations imposed from 20 December 2021 to 22 January 2022, will continue to receive EWSS subsidy payments for the month of February at the current rates (i.e. the rates in place for January). In addition, the phased exit from the EWSS will be delayed by one month so that these employers can receive support until 31 May 2022.
Examples and confirmation of the rates payable for each month are included in the Revenue guidance notes
Payment of the additional EWSS subsidy will be made by way of a ‘sweepback’ by Revenue. The Guidelines will be further updated by 7 February to outline how eligible employers can claim the additional subsidy in respect of eligible employees.
The businesses that are likely to benefit from this additional support, include:
- restaurants, bars and cafes, excluding take-away or delivery services, which were required to close at 8pm where this was before their normal closing time;
- operators of indoor events, including entertainment, cultural, community and sporting events, which could not take place after 8pm, with attendance limited to 50% of venue capacity or 1,000 attendees, whichever was the lower, for events held before 8pm;
- operators of outdoor events, including entertainment, cultural, community and sporting events, where attendance was limited to 50% of venue capacity or 5,000 attendees, whichever was the lower; and
- wedding reception venues where capacity was limited to a maximum of 100 guests and had to close by midnight.
- Reinstatement of full rate of Employers’ PRSI
The reinstatement of the full rate of Employers’ PRSI will apply with effect from 1 March 2022 for all businesses, including businesses referred to above.
- Re-entry to EWSS for certain employers in December 2021
As previously advised EWSS was re-opened in December for employers that previously correctly claimed EWSS support but may have deregistered on the basis they were no longer eligible, provided certain criteria were met. This relates to employers who expected to experience a 30% reduction in turnover in the period 1 December 2021 – 31 January 2022. The deadline for submitting applications to Revenue for re-entry to the scheme was 15 January 2022.
Employers who re-entered the scheme must undertake an eligibility review on 31 January 2022.
- Covid Restrictions Support Scheme (CRSS)
Revenue has also updated the their Guidelines on the operation of the Covid Restrictions Support Scheme
- All businesses will cease to qualify for the CRSS, from 22 January 2022.
- A business, which is permitted to resume normal trading activities from 22 January 2022, will be entitled to a single “restart week payment” for the week beginning Monday, 24 January 2022, where they meet the relevant criteria.
- For any businesses that had previously claimed CRSS up to 31 January 2022, no further action is necessary. Revenue will treat the week already claimed (from 22 January to 31 January) as being the additional week’s support.
- It is necessary that the business intends to re-open in order to be eligible for any CRSS payments.