Five months’ ago the Temporary Employee/Employer Relief Scheme (TERS) was established and is regulated in terms of Regulation 4(10), issued by the Minister of Cooperative Governance and Traditional Affairs in terms of section 27 (2) of the Disaster Management Act, 2002 (Act no 57 of 2002).
Originally TERS was established only for the period 27 March 2020 to 30 June 2020, in anticipation of employees losing their income as a result of the National Lockdown that was declared on 23 March 2020.
Finally on the 17th of July 2020 the period that is covered by the TERS benefit is extended to 15 August 2020. Even though the new Direction was signed on the 11th of August 2020 only, it is retrospective and deemed to have commenced on 27 June 2020, covering the period 1 July 2020 until 15 August 2020.
In layman’s terms, all claims that will be submitted from this point forward for this specific period will be subject to the amended requirements.
Amendments and Qualifying Requirements
The basic requirements to qualify for TERS remains in place, that is the employee must be registered with the UIF and the employee’s income was reduced as a direct result of the National Lockdown and restrictions in the different levels of lockdown.
Amendments to TERS for the period 1 July 2020 to 15 August 2020 brought about more stringent qualifying requirements for the TERS benefits and ring-fenced payment only to employees whose employers:
You qualify for TERS in this extended period if you are a:
That is employees “with known or disclosed health issues or comorbidities or any other condition that may place the employee at the higher risk of complications or death than other employees if infected with COVID-19; or an employee above the age of 60 years who is at a higher risk of complications or death if infected”.
It is all about protection and risks personally as well as towards colleagues. MISA did an article on this very sensitive issue of being 60 years’ old and older. The ideal was that vulnerable employees work from home or that, if possible, special arrangements at the workplace are made. Should this not be possible, you are covered by TERS and your employer must claim TERS on your behalf.
Reduced Services and Salaries
COVID -19 Temporary Employee/Employer Relief Scheme (C19 TERS) Direction 2020, section 2.3.3. provides that employees can benefit from TERS when their services were not utilised as a result of an employer’s “need to limit the number of employees at the workplace through rostering, staggering of working hours, short time, and the introduction of shift systems.”
TERS is accessible to employees who are:
This is important as a number of the bigger groups in the Retail Motor Industry did embark on nationwide consultations and negotiations to reduce employees’ salaries for a specific pre-determined period. Your employer can therefor apply for TERS on your behalf to “top-up” your salary.
Calculation of TERS – Extended Period
An explanatory memorandum was released to show how the UIF will calculate the benefits as per the Directive for the period 1 July 2020 until 15 August 2020.
MISA have signed a Memorandum of Agreement (MoA) with the Unemployment Insurance Fund in April 2020, to assist and ensure that our members, and as a result all employees, employed at an RMI establishment will receive TERS when applicable. As a result, MISA can assist all employers in the Automotive Aftermarket Industry who are members of the Retail Motor Industry Organisation (RMI), to submit their claims to the Unemployment Insurance Fund.
MISA – Just a phone call or an e-mail away!
Kindly utilise the following e-mail addresses and links for assistance during this time:
Employer UIF/TERS Submissions UIFClaim@ms.org.za
Legal/Labour-related enquiries Legal@ms.org.za
* Legal Reception 0114763920
MISA Benefit claim-related enquiries Claims@misa.org.za
Any other enquiries Info@ms.org.za
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