Introduction

Information about eligibility and how to participate for this scheme can be found here:

https://www.gov.ie/en/publication/282374-guidelines-for-the-covid-19-employer-refund-scheme/#scheme-duration

If you need to use this scheme, please make sure that you have installed at least version 2020.06 of Payback. The latest version can be downloaded from here:

https://www.payback.ie/support/downloads/

The general idea is that these payments should be treated like Social Welfare payments. They are not liable for Tax, PRSI or USC. The employee should get the full payment, so there should be no other deductions like Benefit in Kind, LPT or Bike to Work etc, that will reduce the payment amount.

The €203 should not be split. For example, you are not allowed to pay someone half the amount for working half a week.

Top ups are not allowed. You should not pay someone the €203 and then top up the amount so they still get their full weekly wage.

The payment amount is weekly. So for monthly payments, you should pay the number of whole weeks in the month. (ie, March is 4 payments of €203, so monthly paid employees out for the full month should get 4x203 = €812)

If a monthly employee worked for 2 weeks in March, they should get their two weeks pay + €406 (two weeks of €203)

Before submitting any payments, employers should first register for the scheme should register for the scheme with Revenue via the Revenue Online System.

 

Setting up the Covid-19 element in the Company screen

This step is optional, but we recommend doing this if you have a large number of employees availing of the scheme.

In the Company screen, click on the elements tab for the company you wish to set this scheme up for.

Scroll to the bottom of the elements grid and on the last blank row enter 'COVID-19 Employer Refund Scheme' in the description column. Select  'Covid-19' for the element type.

Note that the PAYE, PRSI and USC tick boxes are all unticked.

Click 'Update Company'

Setting up the Covid-19 employee element

In the Employee screen, click on the elements tab for the employee you wish to set this scheme up for.

If you completed step one, select the element 'COVID-19 Employer Refund Scheme' from the drop down. 

If you did not do step one, enter 'COVID-19 Employer Refund Scheme' in the description column. Select  'Covid-19' for the element type.

Note that the PAYE, PRSI and USC tick boxes are all unticked.

Click 'Update Employee'

Processing the Payment

In the Payroll screen, type the amount of COVID-19 Refund scheme payment you wish to pay. Note that this must be in multiples of €203.

Click the Pay button to process the payment.

Note that the PRSI class on the payslip is not J9. This is because there may be other payments on the same payslip that should be calculated using the correct PRSI subclass.

Submit to Revenue

Submit the payment to Revenue in the usual way.

The PRSI class for any employee who is in the scheme will be flagged J9. You can see this in the XML tab.

Note that this differs to what is on the payslip. The payment should be processed using the usual PRSI class but submitted to Revenue under the subclass J9.

Notes

  • If an employee is being taxed and the amount of payment is less than €203 as a result, change them to a week one tax basis in the Employee screen PAYE tab. It is okay to override the RPN.
  • For Payback, there is no need to enter any €0.01 amounts anywhere. Revenue have issued this instruction because other payroll products need this entered.
  • You should not enter any leave date for the employees.
  • Any employees that already have had a leave date submitted can not avail of this scheme. They should instead contact Welfare. This is even the case if you try to delete or resubmit the leave date submission.
  • If there are any tax (PAYE, USC or PRSI) refunds on the payslip, this is okay. Revenue will also refund these.

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