Changes to the EWSS from 21st July 2021

On 23 February 2021 it was announced that the EWSS would be extended to 30 June 2021 and on 1 June the Scheme was further extended to 31 December 2021.

Under the EWSS scheme, employers and new firms in sectors impacted by COVID-19, whose turnover has fallen 30% get a flat-rate subsidy per week based on the number of qualifying employees on the payroll, including seasonal staff and new employees.

The qualifying criteria remains the same. Employers must have tax clearance from Revenue, and must also be able to demonstrate, to the satisfaction of Revenue, that the business will experience a 30% reduction in turnover, caused by COVID 19 from 1st January to 31st December 2021 for pay dates on, or between, 1 July and 31 December 2021.

To ensure that the scheme is operated as intended, Revenue are undertaking risk based real time compliance checks and there will be a continued review of employer eligibility required. From the end of July, there are very important changes that employers using the scheme should be aware of.
From the 1st August onwards, employers will be required to review their eligibility for the scheme on the last day of each month.
This review should compare the projected and actual financials of the company’s monthly returns to Revenue. They should then assess if they still meet the criteria and eligibility for the scheme. If circumstances change and they no longer meet these criteria, employers should withdraw from the scheme immediately.

From the end of June, employers will be required to complete an online monthly EWSS Eligibility Review Form. This initial submission should be made through ROS from today 21st July and runs until the 30th July.

Employers will need to provide details of actual monthly (vat exclusive) turnover or customer order values for 2019, together with the same detail for the first six months of 2021. They will also need to provide details of monthly projections for the remainder of 2021 i.e. July to December 2021.

On 15th of every subsequent month during the scheme operation, employers will need to provide details of the actual results for the previous month, together with reviewing the original projections provided to ensure they remain valid.

Once the EWSS Eligibility Review Forms have been submitted to Revenue are also carrying out a follow-up programme of compliance interventions with randomly selected employers, together with employers where clarity is required or employers who display high risk indicators and are availing of the scheme. This programme is in accordance with the Code of Practice for Revenue Audit and Other Compliance Interventions.

Failure to complete and submit the EWSS Eligibility Review Form that confirms the requisite reduction and related declaration will result in suspension of payment of EWSS claims.

Revenue may undertake an assurance check programme at a later stage. Further details on how this assurance check programme will operate will issue prior to commencement.

Note: Childcare businesses will have no requirement to meet the turnover criteria. However, they must be registered in accordance with Section 58C of the Child Care Act 1991 and have a tax clearance certificate.

This will only need to be undertaken on a once off basis before 30 July to ensure exemption from the requirement to complete the electronic form for the remainder of 2021.

As useful and important as this scheme has been, it has been a lot of work to navigate through the ever changing regulations and requirements. We hope that this information will help make the new requirements a little clearer.

If you have any questions, please don’t hesitate to give us a call and we would be very happy to discuss any questions you have.  

Kieran Horgan

An important update on the new changes to the EWSS scheme for employers who are currently using this government scheme. Don’t hesitate to give our team a call if we can assist with any of your payroll queries.