The Morrison Government has announced a $130 billion JobKeeper Payment to support businesses and help keep more Australian workers in jobs.
Under the JobKeeper Payment, eligible businesses impacted by the Coronavirus will be able to access a subsidy from the Government to continue paying their employees. Affected employers that meet the eligibility criteria will be able to claim a fortnightly payment of $1,500 per eligible employee from 30 March 2020, for a maximum period of 6 months.
Employers will be eligible for the JobKeeper Payment if:
Businesses will be required to demonstrate that their turnover has fallen by the requisite amount (30% or 50%) when compared to their turnover in a comparable period a year earlier. The Tax Commissioner will have discretion to determine eligibility in specific circumstances including for newly established enterprises and where the turnover for a business in a prior year is not representative of their usual or average turnover.
Not-for-profit entities (including charities) and self-employed individuals can also access JobKeeper Payments if they meet the above turnover tests.
Eligible employees are employees who:
Employers can register their interest in applying for the JobKeeper Payment from 30 March 2020. Employers will then be able to complete an online application via ato.gov.au to verify their eligibility and identify eligible employees. Approved businesses will receive the first round of payments from the ATO in the first week of May and will be required to provide monthly updates to the ATO.
Participating employers will be required to ensure eligible employees receive, at a minimum, $1,500 per fortnight, before tax. This applies even in circumstances where an eligible employee normally receives less than $1,500 per fortnight, before tax. It will be up to the employer whether their want to pay superannuation on any additional wage paid because of the JobKeeper Payment.
Self-employed persons can also register their interest in applying for the JobKeeper Payment using the ATO website. They will need to provide an ABN for their business, nominate a recipient for the payments and provide their Tax File Number, together with a declaration as to recent activity and monthly updates to the ATO.
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