Directors – between a rock and a hard place
Directors that have drawn remuneration from their companies as a mix of low salary and higher dividends would seem to be overlooked by the schemes announced in the past two weeks to support the employed and the self-employed.
In the first news story published by government announcing the Self-Employed Income Support arrangements (26 March 2020), the following paragraph was inserted:
“Those who pay themselves a salary and dividends through their own company are not covered by the scheme but will be covered for their salary by the Coronavirus Job Retention Scheme if they are operating PAYE schemes”.
On this basis, the only financial support that directors could claim is the Job Retention Scheme. This will be based on their salary – not salary plus dividends – and only if they furlough themselves (play no active role in their businesses). It is likely that a director's statutory responsibilities will not count as work if a claim under the Coronavirus Job Protection Scheme is made.