Employees short-changed as companies refuse to apply for (TERS) Relief Scheme benefits

The South African Payroll Association (SAPA) has received several complaints from employees whose salaries have been cut, but their employers aren’t even attempting to claim from the Department of Labour’s Temporary Employee/Employer Relief Scheme (TERS) to ensure their staff are not short-changed during the lockdown period.

Arlene Leggat, president of the SAPA, said many employers believe they won’t receive funds from the TERS, but this isn’t true.

“There is a lot of negativity about the TERS and the government’s ability to process payments,” said Leggat.

“The payment system initially had its hiccups, but the reality now is that TERS benefits are being paid out but employers are being too stubborn to apply for the benefits on their staff’s behalf.

If your company has had to reduce employees’ hours, cut salaries, or both, it is your responsibility to start the application process so that your employees don’t have a reduced salary during these uncertain times.

If you are working for a company that isn’t prepared to claim from the TERS, then you need to notify the Department of Labour so that they can follow up on this,” she said.

The TERS is a financial support measure that the government has put in place to support workers and employers during the COVID-19 lockdown. An employee’s daily income, as well as the income replacement rate, needs to be calculated according to the requirements on www.uifecc.labour.gov.za.

Salaries that are taken into account for TERS benefits are capped at   R17,712 per month per employee.

The income replacement rate sliding scale from 38% to 60% then determines the benefit the employee will receive.

Who can claim?
While there has been a lot written about the government only giving financial support to BB-EEE, Leggat says this is not the case for TERS benefits.

“All companies who are registered and pay UIF can claim. If your company’s TERS claim has been rejected and you don’t know why, please contact UIF through their available channels.

It is challenging at the moment as calls are not always answered. The other option is to check your file and resubmit,” said Leggat.

How to claim
Companies must apply for the TERS benefits and receive money as a lump sum, which they then have to distribute to their employees.

To initiate the process, employers must send an e-mail to covid19ters@labour.gov.za, which will trigger an automated reply that will outline the steps and details.

Then, applications are made on this website: www.uifecc.labour.gov.za/covid19.

“When the system initially launched in April, there were many issues, but these problems have since – for the most – been ironed out,” Leggat said.

“The SAPA commends the department for rolling out this benefit programme on short notice and we encourage employers who are cutting their workers’ salaries to immediately start their TERS application processes.

“Their employees’ livelihood depends on it.”



  1. Oh please, I have never faced such absolute challenges in all my life. We applied for TERS right at the start and my staff have still not received one cent! So much for paying UIF every month! Every time you actually get through and speak to them they cant give any other answer but “it has been escalated”. Seriously, the system is a joke!

  2. our company received uif money and send us a link in which we enter our I’D number to see how much we gonna recieve suddenly we are told the amount reflecting on the link won’t be the same for some reasons 80% of workers dnt understand and there is no website nor platform to ask questions .

  3. My company actually paid us our annually leave money and than when our uif money came he said it will make up for the annual leave so basically no money for you guys….really just like that and than on top of that told us he did told the uif department he is going to borrow our annual leave money to us the same people who said any company is not suppose to do so he said they said it’s ok

  4. Since we are still wait for the money of covid19 uif fund .we don’t know we will ever get it ,but what is suprising the there is one among us who got from the fund

  5. When will we get the uif money claim by the employer , is already middle of the month and we haven’t got any payment . The ceo of labour daily preach about billions of rands been paid and why are we not getting our monies , this is frustrating . Someone claim that billions of rands been paid out , but the beneficiaries not receiving a cent from those billions been paid.

  6. The uif and companies they using us as workers they know this is a hardiest way to get this uif for us because some companies they dont care about this.why they dont have other opions so we can claim it for ourselves .the make us a fool and eat our money we work for.

  7. Problem is that for May it was still not possible to submit tha claim. When will they be ready?

  8. I was send home during lockdown,I was paid half payment
    My bosses don’t want to register for UIF funds
    I’m not registered for work
    My bosses want to reduce my payments

  9. Frustrated some staff members received and some of us are still waiting this is the second pay out and still nothing for my store applications have been done in April we already in may..doubt if it’ll ever pay out because we have already started working under level 4

  10. I don’t think my employer did apply for us because if I check my payment status threre is nothing there even if I ask him doesn’t respond

  11. I want to know about the Department of tourism are they receiving the uif also or not cos my boss said we won’t get the money bcos we not in BEE?

  12. Since lockdown we never received any sort of income as employees,company said they did apply for Ters,which i doubt they did bcoz of as from start of covid employees was put on lay off due to covid imports of marerials,we still on lay off and nother reason the took us off books which tells me they didnt deduct any uif or provident fund ,so now we in this struggle on still waiting and nobody say anything according to our funds, no we cant apply for these funds on our own ,help plz we are starving and struggling,how can companies do this after employees work all their lives for them ,i believe company didnt apply ,if any can assist me plz do

  13. It’s June already and no payment yet…company paying from our leave and when that ters money come bosses will deduct it again back.can bosses do that .we already paid little money.how can the rich steal from the poor like that…Dear God please send the right people on our path to help us ..and to court our skelm bosses

  14. My tenant is still waiting for his employer to claim his May Ters
    His beyond stressed as he has no money and has not been called back to work
    His emplover is not answering his phone

  15. My employer already claimed my UIF but since from much I never received anything but others did get something can I get a clear answer on that please

  16. My company applied and the stuff got the money but me and other two employees didn’t get a cent they told us to wait

  17. Its been 3months now we hasn’t recieved anything as employees the payments status keep on processing, we are hungry please help

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