UPDATED: 23/07/2020

This week the Prime Minster and Treasurer announced an extension to JobKeeper and a raft of changes to rates and eligibility with a view to boosting recovery from the COVID-19 recession.  Changes to the amounts paid to staff based on the hours that they work, resulting in lower payments to staff and a removal of the disincentive to work for part time and casual staff are complimented by a new rolling change to the eligibility of businesses from 28/9/2020, where businesses will need to demonstrate ongoing and current distress in order to access the payments for the forward month/quarter.   

ACAPMA is currently liaising with the Government to seek clarification on the operation of Stage 2 and 3.

Key questions include;

  • the accommodation of casuals who will have worked prior to the commencement of Stage 2, and
  • the practical details surrounding the revenue drop test required to prove eligibility.

ACAPMA reminds Members that if they have other questions on how Stage 2 and 3 JobKeeper will work, now is the time to ask them. Forward your questions to employment@acapma.com.au and ACAPMA will follow up on your behalf and behalf of the industry.

ACAPMA will continue to keep Members updated as this unprecedented program gains shape and detail.

For now though, the big message is that the changes announced do not come in until 28/9/2020 – so for now, it is JobKeeper as usual.

From the Treasury…

On 21 July 2020, the Government announced it is extending the JobKeeper Payment until 28 March 2021 and is targeting support to those employers who continue to be significantly impacted by the Coronavirus;

  • The existing JobKeeper Payment will remain in place until 27 September 2020. Information about the operation of the JobKeeper Payment until 27 September 2020 is available on the ATO website.
  • From 28 September 2020, the JobKeeper Payment will be targeted to employers that have been most significantly impacted, the payment rates will be stepped-down and two tiers of payment will be introduced. Non-employing businesses will no longer be eligible for the JobKeeper Payment from this date.

For those currently receiving JobKeeper Payment it remains unchanged and available until 27 September 2020.

From 28 September 2020, employers seeking to claim JobKeeper Payments will be required to reassess their eligibility for the JobKeeper extension with reference to their actual turnover. The JobKeeper extension will be available to qualifying businesses from 28 September 2020 until 28 March 2021.

The ATO is administering the JobKeeper Payment and detailed information and guidance on JobKeeper is available on the ATO website.

On 21 July, the Government announced it is extending the JobKeeper Payment until 28 March 2021 and is targeting support to those organisations which continue to be significantly impacted by the Coronavirus. From 28 September 2020, eligibility for the JobKeeper Payment will be based on actual turnover in the relevant periods, the payment will be stepped down and paid at two rates.

Information about the operation of the existing JobKeeper Payment until 27 September 2020 is available on the ATO website.

Business Eligibility

From 28 September 2020, organisations seeking to claim JobKeeper payments will be required to reassess their eligibility for the JobKeeper extension with reference to their actual turnover in the June and September quarters 2020. Organisations will need to demonstrate that they have met the relevant continuing decline in turnover test in both of those quarters to be eligible for JobKeeper from 28 September 2020 to 3 January 2021.

Organisations will need to further reassess their eligibility in January 2021 for the period from 4 January to 28 March 2021. Organisations will need to demonstrate that they have met the relevant continuing decline in turnover test in each of the previous three quarters to remain eligible for the March 2021 quarter.

JobKeeper Payment Rates

The JobKeeper payment rate is to be reduced and paid at two rates:

  • From 28 September 2020 to 3 January 2021, the payment rate will be $1,200 per fortnight for all eligible employees who, in the four weeks before 1 March 2020, were working in the business for 20 hours or more a week on average and for business participants who were actively engaged in the business for more than 20 hours per week, and $750 per fortnight for employees who were working in the business for less than 20 hours a week on average and business participants who were actively engaged in the business less than 20 hours per week in the same period.
  • From 4 January 2021 to 28 March 2021, the payment rate will be $1,000 per fortnight for all eligible employees who in the four weeks before 1 March 2020, were working for 20 hours or more a week on average and for business participants who were actively engaged in the business for more than 20 hours per week, and $650 per fortnight for employees who were working for less than 20 hours a week on average and business participants who were actively engaged in the business for less than 20 hours per week in the same period.

Further Information is available in the JobKeeper Payment extension fact sheet.

Extention Fact Sheet – https://treasury.gov.au/sites/default/files/2020-07/Fact_sheet-JobKeeper_Payment_extension.pdf

For more see; https://treasury.gov.au/coronavirus/jobkeeper

ACAPMA