Pay Coronavirus Job Retention Scheme grants back

Find out how to pay all or some of your grant back if you’ve overclaimed, or if you do not need the grant and want to make a voluntary repayment.

If you’ve claimed too much through the Coronavirus Job Retention Scheme, or you’d like to make a voluntary repayment because you do not want or need the grant to pay your employees’ wages, tax and National Insurance and pension contributions, you can either:

  • correct it in your next claim (your new claim will be reduced and you’ll need to keep a record of the adjustment for 6 years)
  • get a payment reference number and pay HMRC back within 30 days (only if you’re not correcting it in your next claim)

How to correct overclaims in your next claim

You must follow these steps:

  1. Work out your claim amount as normal. If you submit using a file, do not provide details of the overclaim in that month’s claim file. The file should show the amount of the claim for the employees being claimed for without any offset for the overclaim.

  2. Work out your overclaim amount.

  3. Deduct the amount you’ve overclaimed (step 2) from your claim amount (step 1).

  4. Enter the result in the ‘claim amount’ box on your claim form.

  5. Enter the amount you’ve overclaimed in the ‘overclaim’ box on your claim form.

For example, if your claim amount is £5,000 and you need to repay an overclaim of £1,000, you should enter:

  • £4,000 into the ‘claim amount’ box (£5,000 - £1,000)
  • £1,000 into the ‘overclaim’ box

How to pay

You must use the online service to get your payment reference number before you can pay HMRC back. You should only do this if you’re not making another claim.

Your payment may be delayed if you use the wrong reference number.

Pay by online or telephone banking, CHAPS and Bacs

You can pay by Faster Payments, CHAPS or Bacs to HMRC’s account.

Sort code Account number Account name
08 32 10 12001039 HMRC Cumbernauld

Payments by:

  • Faster Payments (online or telephone banking) usually reach HMRC on the same or next day, including weekends and bank holidays
  • CHAPS usually reach HMRC the same working day if you pay within your bank’s processing times
  • Bacs usually take 3 working days

Pay by card

You can also pay by debit card or corporate credit card.

If you’ve overclaimed

If you’ve overclaimed a grant and have not repaid it, you must notify HMRC by the latest of (one of the following):

  • 90 days after the date you received the grant you were not entitled to
  • 90 days after the date you received the grant that you were no longer entitled to keep because your circumstances changed
  • 20 October 2020

If you do not do this, you may have to pay a penalty. If you do repay any overclaimed grant, this will prevent any potential tax liability in respect of the overpayment of Coronavirus Job Retention Scheme. We will not be actively looking for innocent errors in our compliance approach.

Find out more about when you may have to pay a penalty and other information, including:

  • how HMRC decides how much the penalty will be
  • when HMRC will not charge a penalty
  • how to appeal against a penalty
Published 26 June 2020
Last updated 27 May 2021 + show all updates
  1. New section added called 'How to correct overclaims in your next claim'.

  2. Claims for furlough days in May 2021 must be made by 14 June 2021.

  3. Claims for furlough days in April 2021 must be made by 14 May 2021.

  4. Updated to show that the scheme has been extended until 30 September 2021.

  5. Claims for furlough days in February 2021 must be made by 15 March 2021.

  6. Added translation

  7. Claim deadline for furlough days in January 2021 added. Claims must be made by 15 February 2021.

  8. Added Welsh translation.

  9. Updated to reflect that the Coronavirus Job Retention Scheme has been extended to 30 April 2021.

  10. The scheme has been extended. 30 November 2020 is the last day employers can submit or change claims for periods ending on or before 31 October 2020.

  11. The guidance from 'If you've claimed too much or not enough from the Coronavirus Job Retention Scheme' has been moved to this guide. This guide has also been updated with links to the Coronavirus Job Retention Scheme repayment service.

  12. Welsh translation has been added.

  13. First published.