The Leading News & Information Service For The Facilities, Workplace & Built Environment Community

Furlough Fraud Bill up to £3.5bn, Says Tax Authorities

Furlough Fraud Bill up to £3.5bn, says Tax Authorities
08 September 2020 | Updated 17 September 2020

The government has said that up to £3.5bn may have been fraudulently or mistakenly claimed under the Coronavirus Job Retention Scheme.

Speaking to the Commons Public Accounts Committee, HMRC's permanent secretary, Jim Harra said that: “We have made an assumption for the purposes of our planning that the error and fraud rate in this scheme could be between 5 per cent and 10 per cent.”

It was also revealed that HMRC’s furlough fraud hotline had received 8,000 calls so far, and 27,000 “high-risk” claims are being investigated. 


Furlough Scheme Used by 1.2m Businesses


According to the BBC, the Coronavirus Job Retention Scheme has paid out £35bn so far and has been used by 1.2m employers, with 9.6m jobs being furloughed.

In August this year, it was reported that the majority of people furloughed during lockdown continued to work for their employer

HM Revenue and Customs data shows that the number of reports of furlough fraud rose by more than half between the end of June and 22 July. 6,749 reports of misuse of the scheme were recorded up to 22 July, compared to around 4,400 at the end of June.

Picture: A photograph of some stacks of pound coins

Article written by Ella Tansley | Published 08 September 2020


Related Articles

HMRC Accepts £215m in Furlough Returns

£215m of furlough funds have been returned to the government in circumstances where they were mistakenly claimed, or entirely unnecessary. HMRC have recorded...

 Read Full Article
Majority of Furloughed Workers in UK Continued With Jobs 

Research shows that the majority of people furloughed during lockdown continued to work for their employer, with men more likely to do so than women. The research,...

 Read Full Article
Another Furlough Extension - What Happens Now?

The Coronavirus Job Retention Scheme has been officially extended until 31 March 2021, but what else do employers need to know? Alan Price, CEO of BrightHR, explains...

 Read Full Article
Government Announces new Job Support Scheme

In a speech in the Commons today, Chancellor Rishi Sunak has announced a new Job Support Scheme to help protect employment once the current furlough scheme ends. The...

 Read Full Article
Furlough Support for Employers Continues To Decrease 

From 1 September 2020, businesses using the Coronavirus Job Retention Scheme will have to pay ten per cent of their furloughed employees’ wages. The...

 Read Full Article
Travel Quarantine Restrictions and the Implications for UK Employers

New quarantine restrictions on people returning from Spain may have implications for UK employers. On Sunday 26 July 2020, Spain was removed from the travel corridor...

 Read Full Article
Compass Group Joins List of Firms Not Claiming Furlough Bonus

Compass Group, the UK’s largest food and support services company, has confirmed that it will not be taking up Job Retention Bonuses for any of its...

 Read Full Article
Chancellor Announces Changes To Furlough Scheme, Green Recovery and VAT 

Rishi Sunak has today provided a recovery plan to stimulate the economy, including a Job Retention Bonus for employers. Sunak also introduced a three-point plan for...

 Read Full Article
Changes To The Furlough Scheme – What It Means For Employers

As we start to exit the lockdown, the landscape does not become any easier or more certain for employers.  The Chancellor’s proposed changes to furlough are...

 Read Full Article
Posting On LinkedIn Whilst Furloughed – Is It A Breach?

As around 10 per cent of the private sector workforce is set to be furloughed and temporarily absent from work, is posting on LinkedIn during this time a legal grey...

 Read Full Article