JobKeeper Extension: All changes you need to know
The Government has announced changes to JobKeeper Payment including an extension through to 28 March 2021. These changes do not impact JobKeeper payments until after 28 September 2020.
Support will be targeted to businesses and not-for-profits that continue to be significantly impacted by the coronavirus. The payment rate will be reduced and a lower payment rate will be introduced for those who work fewer hours. Other eligibility rules remain unchanged.
JobKeeper Payment Rates
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 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 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
• $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.
Businesses and not-for-profits will be required to nominate which payment rate they are claiming for each of their eligible employees (or business participants).
Employers will continue to be required to make payments to employees equal to, or greater than, the amount of the JobKeeper Payment (before tax), based on the payment rate that applies to each employee. This is called the wage condition.
From 28 September 2020, organisations seeking to claim JobKeeper payments will be required to reassess their eligibility for the JobKeeper extension using actual GST turnover (rather than projected GST turnover).
In order to be eligible for the JobKeeper Payment, businesses and not-for-profits will need to demonstrate that they have met the relevant continuing decline in turnover test for each of the two periods of extension, as well as meeting the other existing eligibility requirements for the JobKeeper Payment.
1. The first JobKeeper Payment extension period of 28 September 2020 to 3 January 2021 businesses will need to demonstrate that their actual GST turnover has significantly fallen in the both the June quarter 2020 (April, May and June) and the September quarter 2020 (July, August, September) relative to comparable periods (generally the corresponding quarters in 2019).
2. The second JobKeeper Payment extension period of 4 January 2021 to 28 March 2021 businesses will again need to demonstrate that their actual GST turnover has significantly fallen in each of the June, September and December 2020 quarters relative to comparable periods (generally the corresponding quarters in 2019).
Generally businesses will use the basic test to determine fall in turnover. This is based on GST turnover.
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 per cent for those with an aggregated turnover of more than $1 billion
- 30 per cent for those with an aggregated turnover of $1 billion or less
Your aggregated turnover is generally your annual turnover, plus the annual turnover of any business:
- connected with you
- that is your affiliate
The Commissioner of Taxation will have discretion to set out alternative tests that would
establish eligibility in specific circumstances.
Businesses and not-for-profits will generally be able to assess eligibility based on details reported in the Business Activity Statement (BAS). Alternative arrangements will be put in place for businesses and not-for-profits that are not required to lodge a BAS (for example, if the entity is a member of a GST group).
As the deadline to lodge a BAS for the September quarter or month is in late October, and the
December quarter (or month) BAS deadline is in late January for monthly lodgers or late
February for quarterly lodgers, businesses and not-for-profits will need to assess their eligibility
for JobKeeper in advance of the BAS deadline in order to meet the wage condition (which
requires them to pay their eligible employees in advance of receiving the JobKeeper payment in
arrears from the ATO).
If a business or not-for-profit does not meet the additional turnover tests for the extension period, this does not affect their eligibility prior to 28 September 2020. The JobKeeper Payment will continue to remain open to new recipients, provided they meet the existing eligibility requirements and the additional turnover tests during the extension period.
The eligibility rules for employees remain unchanged.
You can enrol for the JobKeeper Payment at any time until the program closes if your circumstances have changed. Check if you are eligible at Enrol for JobKeeper.
Transition from JobKeeper to JobSeeker
Changes to the JobKeeper Payment may make recipients of that payment eligible for the JobSeeker Payment or other income support payments. The Government is making further changes to income support arrangements for JobKeeper Payment recipients who transition onto income support.
Income support recipients earning above their income test cut-off point and on a nil rate of income support will be able to continue to keep their concession card and return seamlessly to income support if their earnings reduce below their cut-off point.
Services Australia will allow recipients of the JobKeeper Payment to apply for income support ahead of the cessation of their JobKeeper Payment to ensure individuals can quickly access income support after their access to the JobKeeper Payment ends.
This information is a guide to the emerging details on the administration of the Jobkeeper Scheme. It is of a general nature comprising extracts from the ATO website materials. Your specific circumstances require individual examination for evaluation of the subsidy for your business.
Need help with JobKeeper Payment? Talk to us as we can assist you with your application.
Employers must enrol with the ATO using the Business Portal and authenticate with myGovID to claim JobKeeper payments. Eligible employers and employees… Read more
Sole traders and some other entities (such as partnerships, trusts or companies) may be entitled to the JobKeeper Payment scheme under the business participation entitlement… Read more