Skip to main content

Pay: Coronavirus

Question for Treasury

UIN 47458, tabled on 15 May 2020

To ask the Chancellor of the Exchequer, what steps he is taking to ensure that (a) furloughed workers who are usually paid (i) variable salaries and (ii) tronc and (b) other furloughed workers receive a level of income at least equivalent to the minimum wage.

Answered on

21 May 2020

The National Minimum Wage (NMW) is calculated on the basis of hours worked, and furloughed workers will not be working any hours for their employer, although they will remain employed by them. Furloughed workers will be paid the lower of 80% of their salary or £2,500, even if, based on their usual working hours, this would be below the NMW. Employers can top up these payments voluntarily.

The Government is also supporting people on low incomes who need to rely on the welfare system through a significant package of temporary measures. These include a £20 per week increase to the Universal Credit standard allowance and Working Tax Credit basic element, and a nearly £1bn increase in support for renters through increases to the Local Housing Allowance rates for Universal Credit and Housing Benefit claimants. These changes will benefit new and existing claimants. Anyone can check their eligibility and apply for Universal Credit by visiting

Answered by