Advice for workers who are generally on a series of short fixed-term PAYE contracts with different employers

Last updated: 31 Mar 2020

If you work on a series of short fixed-term contracts with different employers (often referred to as a “Schedule E Freelancer”) then you may qualify to be treated in the same way as any other PAYE employee/worker under the Job Retention Scheme (JRS) that has been announced by the government as long as you were engaged on or before the 28th February. Bectu is urging employers to maximise this scheme and include as many people as possible. This will mean that your employer can claim back (as a minimum) 80% of your salary or average wage. If your wage fluctuates, the average wage should be based on the higher of either:

  • The amount you earned in the same month last year
  • An average of your monthly earnings from the last year.

If you’ve been employed for less than a year, the average is based on your monthly earnings since you started work with that employer.

Because many workers in the cultural industries who fit this description may not have been working on the dates that allow them to qualify for this scheme, Bectu is also urging the government to improve the current offer to these workers and allow more flexibility so that more of them can be included and retained on it.

Details of how the PAYE scheme works can be seen here: