Sep 2021


Coronavirus Statutory Sick Pay Rebate Scheme to end on 30th September 2021

The Coronavirus Statutory Sick Pay Rebate scheme was introduced to repay employers the current amount of Statutory Sick Pay paid to current or former employees on or after 13th March 2020 for periods of sickness related to Coronavirus. An employer can claim up to 2 weeks of COVID-related statutory sick pay for an employee that was paid, however this will end on 30th September 2021.

Employers will have up to the deadline on 31st December 2021 to reclaim back Coronavirus Statutory Sick Pay on this scheme for periods before and up to the end of September 2021. HMRC’s main guidance for claims under this scheme can be accessed here.

The employer must keep records for the statutory sick payments they wish to claim from HMRC such as:

  • National insurance number for each employee being claimed for
  • Start and end dates for the period of sick leave the employee could not work
  • The reason why the employee could not work
  • Details of the qualifying dates in the period the employee could not work


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Posted byDebbie ClarkeinCoronavirusPayroll

Mar 2021


Informally Payrolling of Benefits Changes for 2021-22

From 2021-22 onwards the option will no longer be available for employers to informally payroll benefits by making an agreement with HMRC. Informally payrolling benefits meant the employer did not have to register for payrolling of benefits before the start of the tax year and made an agreement with HMRC. All employers that now wish to payroll benefits in the tax year 2021-22, even if they had this previous arrangement with HMRC, must register with HMRC using the online Payrolling Benefits in Kind (PBIK) service before 6th April 2021 (if you had not already registered last year).

Employers can register with HMRC using the PBIKs service. Registering with HMRC allows you to payroll tax on benefits and expenses without the need to submit a form P11D after the end of the tax year. P11D(b) returns will still have to be submitted and must include the total values of all payrolled and all non-payrolled benefits.

Using the online service, you can:

  • Choose which benefits and expenses you want to include in the payroll for the following tax year.
  • Add or remove benefits and expenses.
  • Exclude employees who receive benefits or expenses but don’t want them payrolled. For these employees you must continue to report the benefit or expense on a P11D (you can exclude an employee at any time in a tax year but once you’ve done this you can’t reverse the decision, in year).

The benefits you wont be able to payroll are:

  • Employer provided living accommodation
  • Interest free and low interest (beneficial) loans

Tax is collected on benefits and expenses by adding the benefit or expense to the employee’s taxable pay in payroll. Tax is then deducted or repaid as usual as per the employee’s tax code and the details reported on the Full Payment Submission to HMRC. Payrolling of benefits and expenses can be processed for employees in BrightPay 2021-22 and a PBIK form can be produced for employees.


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Mar 2021


Budget 2021 – An Employer Focus

Chancellor of the Exchequer Rishi Sunak presented Budget 2021 to Parliament today 3rd March 2021.

The main points to be noted by employers are:

  • The personal tax allowance will increase from £12,500 to £12,570 for the new tax year 2021-22 and the plan is to keep it at this level until 2026.
  • The higher rate income tax threshold will increase by £270 to £50,270 from 6th April 2021 and will be frozen until April 2026.
  • The NIC primary threshold will increase by £68, from £9,500 to £9,568 for 2021-22.
  • The Coronavirus Job Retention Scheme is to be extended until the end of September 2021 with the government to continue paying 80% of employees' wages for hours they cannot work. Employers will be asked to contribute 10% for July and 20% for August and September.
  • The grant for new apprenticeships made available by employers in England to be extended to September 2021 and the amount increased to £3,000.
  • Traineeships to get a £126 million boost to fund 40,000 more places.
  • The Employment Allowance remains at £4,000 and will apply to eligible employers whose Secondary Class 1 National Insurance Contributions liability is under £100,000 a year.
  • From 1st April 2021, the National Living Wage of £8.91 per hour will now be paid to employees aged 23 years and over instead of the previous age threshold of 25 years and older.
  • The Vat rate for the hospitality sector will remain at 5% until 30th September 2021. This will increase to 12.5% until 31st March 2022, with the 20% rate resuming from April 2022.
  • £5 billion in new Restart Grants for businesses announced – £6,000 for non-essential outlets that are due to re-open in April and for hospitality, accommodation, leisure, gym and personal care businesses, a one-off cash grant of up to £18,000.

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Posted byDebbie ClarkeinHMRC

Mar 2021


New Advisory Fuel Rates from 1st March 2021

The latest Advisory Fuel Rates that will come into effect from 1st March 2021 for company cars has been advised by HMRC. Employers may use the old rates for up to one month from the date the new rates apply. Employers are under no obligation to make supplementary payments to reflect the new rates but can do so if they wish. Hybrid cars are treated as either petrol or diesel cars for this purpose for the fuel rates. For fully electric cars, the Advisory Electricity Rate is 4 pence per mile. However, electricity is not a fuel for car fuel benefit purposes. Click here to see all details per HMRC.

 Engine size  Petrol - amount per mile  LPG - amount per mile
 1400cc or less  10 pence  7 pence
 1401cc to 2000cc  12 pence  8 pence 
 Over 2000cc  18 pence  12 pence


 Engine size  Diesel - amount per mile
 1600cc or less  9 pence
 1601cc to 2000cc  11 pence
 Over 2000cc  12 pence


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Posted byDebbie ClarkeinHMRC

Mar 2021


Year End - Frequently Asked Questions

To assist users in completing the 2020-21 tax year and transitioning to tax year 2021-22, we have compiled a list of frequently asked questions below.

1. What steps do I need to complete to finalise the 2020-21 tax year?
Please click here to access our simple step-by-step guide for completing the 2020-21 year end process in BrightPay.

2. How do I issue P60s to employees?
The P60 option is located within the 'Employees' menu. Select an employee who is in active employment as at 5th April from the left-hand listing. Click 'P60' on the menu bar and simply select the P60 option you require.

3. How do I notify HMRC that the last RTI submission is my final submission for the tax year?

Within the 'RTI' menu in BrightPay 2020-21, select 'RTI > New > Employer Payment Summary'. Where you have recoverable amounts, tick this box and select 'tax month 12' or 'tax quarter 4'. Tick the 'Final Submission' indicator and click OK to generate the EPS and submit to HMRC.

4. Do I have a week 53 in the 2020-21 tax year?
Only if an employer pays employees on a Monday and the last pay date of the 2020-21 tax year is Monday 5th April 2021.

5. When will BrightPay 21-22 be available?
BrightPay 21-22 is scheduled for release week commencing 22nd March 2021.

6. Is it ok to import my data into BrightPay 2021-22 before my payroll is finished for the 2020-21 tax year?
We advise waiting until your payroll is fully completed for the current tax year before importing into the new tax year version. This will ensure the most accurate and up-to-date information is being imported from the previous tax year.

7. Why is BrightPay 2021-22 downloading as a 60-day free trial - I have already purchased a licence?
BrightPay will initially download as a 60-day free trial (with full functionality). On purchasing a 2021-22 licence, you will have received a licence key on the invoice that was emailed to you. Simply select 'Upgrade Licence' on the 'Open Company' screen of your BrightPay 2021-22 software and enter and activate your licence key here. Your software will no longer show as a free trial and instead will indicate your purchased licence type.

8. How do I install BrightPay 21-22 for the new tax year?
Every tax year we release brand new software in line with the new budgetary requirements. Thus, to move your payroll on to a new tax year, simply download the new tax year version of BrightPay that is available on our website here

Once downloaded, this will install separately to your previous year’s software and you will see a new BrightPay icon appear on your desktop. You can still access the information for the previous tax year in BrightPay 2020-21.

9. How do I import my data from BrightPay 2020-21 into BrightPay 2021-22 for the new tax year?
First, check the location of where your 2020-21 employer data file is saved - you can do this by hovering your mouse over the employer name on your 'Open Employer' screen in BrightPay 2020-21 and making a note of the location that will appear.

Next, on the 'Open Company' screen in BrightPay 2021-22, select 'Import Employer(s) > Import BrightPay 2020-21 file(s)'. Browse to the location of your 2020-21 employer data file and double click on the file name to commence the import. Your employer and employee details will now be imported into BrightPay 2021-22 and your employer name will be added to your 2021-22 Open Company screen.

Please note: If the employer file is password protected, the password will be the same as the previous year.

10. Will tax codes L, M and N be automatically uplifted when I import my data from BrightPay 20-21 into BrightPay 2021-22?
Tax codes for L, M and N will be automatically uplifted for the new tax year in BrightPay 2021-22 when your employer file is imported from BrightPay 2020-21. Tax code L will be uplifted by 7, tax code M will be uplifted by 8 and tax code N will be uplifted by 6 in BrightPay 2021-22.

11. Do I need to send a new Employer Payment Summary to HMRC to claim the Employment Allowance?
Yes. Since 6th April 2020, Employment Allowance does not auto-renew for an employer as it did in previous tax years.

An employer now has to submit an 'Employer Payment Summary' to HMRC every tax year to notify HMRC that they will be claiming the Employment Allowance. Once this EPS is sent to HMRC, the employer can then 'enable' the Employment Allowance in the first tax period within the 'HMRC Payments' utility in BrightPay.

Please note: HMRC must also be notified via an Employer Payment Summary if you are no longer eligible for the Employment Allowance. Further guidance on operating the Employment Allowance in BrightPay is available here.

12. How do I sign into BrightPay Connect for the new tax year?

Please select the 'Connect' tab on your BrightPay 2021-22 'Open Company' screen and sign in to your BrightPay Connect account using your Connect username and password.

13. Why do I receive HMRC error 6010 when I try to submit a P11D(b) for the 2020-21 tax year?
HMRC will only accept a P11D(b) for the 2020-21 tax year from 6th April 2021. If trying to submit before this date, error number 6010 will be returned from HMRC into BrightPay. HMRC are currently accepting a P11D(b) for the tax year 2019-20 up until 5th April 2021.

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Posted byDebbie ClarkeinPayroll

Feb 2021


Plan for Jobs - £1,000 for Traineeships

In the July 2020 Plan for Jobs announced by Chancellor Rishi Sunak, an investment fund of £111 million is available to assist the largest development ever for traineeships and employers that provide a traineeship. An employer can claim a £1,000 bonus for each trainee that is enrolled under this new traineeship programme. The new project will help young people learn new skills and experience that will assist them in finding employment or an apprenticeship or equip them for further study options.

Registration for applicants for this scheme can now be made online here. The bonus of £1,000 will be available to employers to claim until 31st July 2021 and will help employers with the traineeship costs such as uniforms, travel cost and providing facilities. The maximum number of trainees an employer can claim under this programme is 10 trainees. Employers can claim this incentive of £1,000 per trainee for any trainee placement they have since 1st September 2020

The traineeship programme period will last for a period of at least 6 weeks and can be as long as 12 months. The programmes will help the trainees develop skills for the workplace such as digital skills in conjunction with English and maths skills. Traineeships will be combined with job placements for a minimum of 70 hours.

Research has shown that traineeship programmes have previously assisted nearly 120,000 young people since 2013 and two thirds of trainees either progress to employment or study further or partake in an apprenticeship within six months of completing the traineeship programme.

This scheme encourages and assists employers to help train or educate young people in conjunction with the apprenticeship scheme. Under the apprenticeship scheme employers can claim £2,000 for any new apprentice aged under 25 that is hired and £1,500 for any new apprentice aged 25 or older. This scheme will end in March 2021 and over 10,000 have already availed of this scheme.

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Posted byDebbie ClarkeinPay/Wage

Feb 2021


Minimum Wage Increase on 1st April 2021

The Low Pay Commission’s recommendations for the new National Minimum Wage were approved by Government and these new wage rates will come into effect on the 1st April 2021. The National Living Wage of £8.91 per hour will now be paid to employees aged 23 years and over instead of the previous age threshold of 25 years and older. This is an increase of 2.2% from £8.72.

The National Minimum Wage (NMW) is the minimum pay per hour most employees are entitled to by law. An employee's age and if they are an apprentice will determine the rate they will receive. The hourly rate for the minimum wage depends on an employee's age and whether they are an apprentice:

  • The apprentice rate is applicable to apprentices aged under 19 and those aged 19 or over when they are in the first year of their apprenticeship
  • Employees under 23 years old are entitled to the National Minimum Wage
  • Employees aged 23 or over are entitled to the National Living Wage

Rates from 1 April 2021 will be:

Minimum wage rates

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Posted byDebbie ClarkeinPay/WagePayroll

Feb 2021


Two Factor Authentication Explained

As security is a large concern for many businesses nowadays as data breaches are a threat to all entities, Two Factor Authentication can now be enabled as a feature for users of BrightPay Connect. Two Factor Authentication is a second layer of protection to re-confirm the identity for users logging into Connect through an internet browser or through BrightPay. This improves security, protects against fraud and lowers the risk of data breaches as users can access sensitive employer and employee data in Connect with the increased security layer.

BrightPay Connect is an optional cloud add-on feature that works with BrightPay. BrightPay Connect provides a secure, automated and user-friendly way to backup and a self-service dashboard to both accountants and employers so they can access payslips, payroll reports, amounts due to HMRC, annual leave requests and employee contact details.

How it works

If Two Factor Authentication is enabled for a Connect account, when any user on the Connect account tries to sign into Connect via their internet browser here or through BrightPay, they will be asked to enter in a security code that needs to be sent to them. The user can select to have the security code to be sent by email or by text to the user. 

Once the user receives the security code the user enters this in the 'verify code' field and selects 'Verify Code'. The user will only be able to access the security code if they have access to the email account or mobile device. The random generated 6 digit security code will expire after fifteen minutes so a new code will have to be sent if the code is not used in the time limit. 

This Two Factor Authentication uses a second security measure of identification ensuring the user is the correct user when logging into Connect. It adds an additional layer of security to an already secure hosted platform and gives the user more reassurance that their payroll data is safer and more secure.

To Enable this option in Connect when you are logged in > Go to 'Settings' > Go to 'Two Factor Authentication' > Tick the box > 'Save Changes'.


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Posted byDebbie ClarkeinBrightPay Connect

Feb 2021


Changes to the Kickstart Scheme

The Kickstart Scheme was introduced by the Department for Work and Pensions for employers in September 2020. This new scheme has created over 120,000 jobs since September 2020 for employees aged between 16 and 24 years old. It is helping young people start their careers as they have been some of the people hardest hit due to economic conditions from the global pandemic.

This scheme allows an employer or group of employers to create new placements for young people and apply for funding from the scheme. The 6 month placements are open to those currently claiming Universal Credit and in danger of long term unemployment. The job placements will allow the participants to gain experience and skills that will assist them in finding employment when they have completed the scheme.

There was a condition previously that an employer had to have a minimum of 30 job placements in order to qualify under this scheme but from 3rd February this threshold will be removed and employers will be able to apply to the Kickstart Scheme without this condition. The closing date for new applicants under this scheme was 28th January, but for employers who want to partake in this scheme they can contact one of the 600 gateway organisations that have been set up such as a Local Authority or Chamber of Commerce. The Department for Work and Pensions welcomes existing gateways continuing to apply to add more employers and job placements. There is £2 billion available under this scheme and the scheme will run until December 2021.

Under the Kickstart Scheme funding for 25 hours per week for 100% of the relevant National Minimum Wage category in addition to employer National Insurance contributions and employer minimum automatic enrolment pension contributions is available per participant. Funding of £1,500 for setup, support and training costs per placement is also paid. This scheme is available to employers in England, Scotland and Wales.

The job placements must:

  • Be a minimum of 25 hours per week, for 6 months 
  • Pay at least the National Minimum Wage or National Living Wage for the person’s age category 
  • Only require basic training 

Every application ought to include how the employer will aid the participants grow their skills and experience.

Development options could include:

  • Providing support to the participants to seek long-term work, including career advice and setting goals 
  • Support with CV and interview preparations 
  • Developing their skills in the workplace such as timekeeping, attendance and teamwork

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Posted byDebbie ClarkeinPAYEWages

Jan 2021


New Proposed Statutory Payment Rates Announced for 2021-22

As there was no Autumn Statement or Budget from Chancellor Rishi Sunak, the financial secretary to the Treasury, Jesse Norman announced a written ministerial statement in the House of Commons with details of the increase of the National Insurance thresholds. The 2020 Autumn Spending Review confirmed that the personal tax allowance and tax basic rate threshold would increase by 0.5%. This is based on the consumer price index.

This would mean that the personal tax allowance for 2021-22 would increase by £70 from £12,500 to £12,570 and the tax basic rate threshold for 2021-22 would increase to £37,700 from £37,500.

The annual National Insurance threshold for Small Employer’ Relief remains at £45,000.

Please see some rates details below:

Statutory Adoption Pay

2020-21  2021-22
Earnings threshold £120.00 £120.00
Standard rate £151.20 £151.97

Statutory Maternity Pay

2020-21   2021-22 
Earnings Threshold  £120.00  £120.00 
Standard Rate  £151.20  £151.97 

Statutory Paternity Pay 

2020-21   2021-22 
Earnings Threshold  £120.00  £120.00 
Standard Rate  £151.20  £151.97 

Statutory Shared Parental Pay

2020-21   2021-22 
Earnings Threshold  £120.00  £120.00 
Standard Rate  £151.20  £151.97 

Statutory Sick Pay 

 2020-21  2021-22 
Earnings Threshold £120.00 £120.00
Standard Rate £95.85 £96.35

Posted byDebbie ClarkeinPay/Wage