The Government is extending the JobKeeper Payment by a further six months to March 2021. Support will be targeted to businesses and not-for-profits that continue to be significantly impacted by the Coronavirus.
The JobKeeper payment, which was originally due to run until 27 September 2020, will now continue to be available to eligible businesses until 28 March 2021 at reduced rates.
New Turnover Test Requirement
From 28 September 2020, businesses and not-for-profits seeking to claim the JobKeeper Payment will be required to demonstrate that they have suffered an ongoing significant decline in turnover using actual GST turnover (rather than projected GST turnover).
Specifically, from 28 September 2020, businesses will be required to reassess their eligibility with reference to their actual GST turnover in the June and September quarters 2020. They will need to demonstrate that they have met the relevant decline in turnover test in both of those quarters to be eligible for the JobKeeper Payment from 28 September 2020 to 3 January 2021.
From 4 January 2021, businesses will need to further reassess their turnover to be eligible for the JobKeeper Payment. They will need to demonstrate that they have met the relevant decline in turnover test with reference to their actual GST turnover in each of the June, September and December quarters 2020 to remain eligible for the JobKeeper Payment from4 January 2021 to 28 March 2021.
To be eligible for JobKeeper Payments under the extension, businesses and not-for-profits will still need to demonstrate that they have experienced a decline in turnover of:
- 50 percent for those with an aggregated turnover of more than $1 billion;
- 30 percent for those with an aggregated turnover of $1 billion or less; or
- 15 percent for Australian Charities and Not for profits Commission-registered charities (excluding schools and universities).
The Commissioner of Taxation will have the discretion to set out alternative tests that would establish eligibility in specific circumstances where it is not appropriate to compare actual turnover in a quarter in 2020 with actual turnover in a quarter in 2019, in line with the Commissioner’s existing discretion.
NOTE：If a business does not meet the additional turnover tests for the extension period, this does not affect their eligibility prior to 28 September 2020.
TIP! Even you did not qualify for the initial job keeper, the JobKeeper Payment and Extension will continue to remain open to new recipients, provided you meet the existing eligibility requirements and the additional turnover tests during the extension period.
The New Jobkeeper Rate
From 28 September 2020 to 3 January 2021, the JobKeeper Payment rates will be:
- $1,200 per fortnight for all eligible employees who, in the four weeks of pay periods before 1 March 2020, were working in the business or not-for-profit for 20 hours or more a week on average, and for eligible business participants who were actively engaged in the business for 20 hours or more per week on average in the month of February 2020; and
- $750 per fortnight for other eligible employees and business participants.
From 4 January 2021 to 28 March 2021, the JobKeeper Payment rates will be:
- $1,000 per fortnight for all eligible employees who, in the four weeks of pay periods before 1 March 2020, were working in the business or not-for-profit for 20 hours or more a week on average and for business participants who were actively engaged in the business for 20 hours or more per week on average in the month of February 2020; and
- $650 per fortnight for other eligible employees and business participants.
The Eligible employees
The eligibility rules for employees remain unchanged.
This means you are eligible if you:
- are currently employed by an eligible employer (including if you were stood down or rehired) were for the eligible employer (or another entity in their wholly-owned group) either
- a full-time, part-time or fixed-term employee at 1 March 2020; or
- a long-term casual employee (employed on a regular and systematic basis for at least 12 months) as at 1 March 2020 and not a permanent employee of any other employer.
- were aged 18 years or older at 1 March 2020 (if you were 16 or 17 you can also qualify for fortnights before 11 May 2020, and continue to qualify after that if you are independent or not undertaking full time study). were either:
- an Australian resident (within the meaning of the Social Security Act 1991); or
- an Australian resident for the purpose of the Income Tax Assessment Act 1936 and the holder of a Subclass 444 (Special Category) visa as at 1 March 2020.
- were not in receipt of any of these payments during the JobKeeper fortnight:
- government parental leave or Dad and partner pay under the Paid Parental Leave Act 2010; or
- a payment in accordance with Australian worker compensation law for an individual’s total incapacity for work.
CLOUD 8 RECOMMENDATIONS AND SOLUTIONS
The ATO has increased its audit/review activities for job keeper payments. We recommend the client to discuss with us about their eligibility and ways to manage job keeper payment compliance.
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