JOBKEEPER 2.1

The Government’s JobKeeper Payment will help keep more Australians in jobs and support businesses affected by the significant economic impact of the Coronavirus.

On 21 July 2020, the Government announced an extension of the JobKeeper Payment until 28 March 2021, targeting support to those businesses and not-for-profits who continue to be significantly impacted by the Coronavirus.

If you currently receive JobKeeper Payments, it remains unchanged and available until 27 September 2020. New applications for JobKeeper remain open, subject to meeting the relevant eligibility requirements.

JOBKEEPER EXTENSION

From 28 September 2020, the JobKeeper Payment will be extended for businesses and not-for-profits that have been most significantly impacted, the payment rates will be stepped-down and two tiers of payment will be introduced. Businesses and not-for-profits seeking to claim JobKeeper 2.1 will be required to re-assess their eligibility for the JobKeeper extension with reference to their actual turnover.

The JobKeeper extension will be available to qualifying businesses and not-for-profits from 28 September 2020 until 28 March 2021.

TWO TIER PAYMENT STRUCTURE

Under the extended JobKeeper program applicable for an additional six months from 28 September 2020 through to 28 March 2021, there is a lower two-tier payment structure and a requirement for employers to retest eligibility based on actual decline in turnover to continue to access the payment.

FULL RATE PARTIAL RATE
MONDAY 28 SEPTEMBER 2020 – SUNDAY 3 JANUARY 2021 $1,200 PER FORTNIGHT $750 PER FORTNIGHT
MONDAY 4 JANUARY 2021 – SUNDAY 28 MARCH 2021 $1,000 PER FORTNIGHT $650 PER FORTNIGHT

DECLINE IN TURNOVER THRESHOLD & TEST PERIOD

The decline in turnover threshold remains;

  • 50% for a business with annual aggregated turnover of more than $1 billion
  • 30% for a business with annual aggregated turnover of $1 billion or less
  • 15% for a charity registered with the ACNC, other than a University and non-government school
30 MARCH 2020 –          27 SEPTEMBER 2020 28 SEPTEMBER 2020 – 3 JANUARY 2021 4 JANUARY 2021 – 28 MARCH 2021
PROJECTED GST TURNOVER

The relevant month or quarter within the period ended 27 September 2020. No requirement to re-test during this period.

 

ACTUAL GST TURNOVER

Businesses must meet the decline in turnover threshold for the September 2020 quarter.

NB the Commissioner has the ability to make a determination that changes the time in which supplies are taken into account in these calculations

ACTUAL GST TURNOVER

Businesses must meet the decline in turnover threshold for the December 2020 quarter.

NB the Commissioner has the ability to make a determination that changes the time in which supplies are taken into account in these calculations

Basic, modified and alternative tests are also available.

Projected income is no longer able to be used, eligibility is based on actual turnover for the remainder of the JobKeeper scheme.

There has not been any further guidance or legislative instrument prepared for the alternative test as yet, we are waiting on further information from the ATO.

EMPLOYEE AND BUSINESS PARTICIPANT ELIGIBILITY

To be an eligible employee under the JobKeeper scheme, employees must meet the below criteria as at 1 March 2020 or 1 July 2020 (for periods from 3 August):

  • Currently employed and were employed by the employer;
  • At least 18 years of age or aged 16 or 17 years and independent or not undertaking full time study;
  • Full-time, part-time or long-term casuals;
  • An Australian resident
  • Not in receipt of a JobKeeper Payment from another employer

In testing whether or not the requisite minimum 20 hours per week for eligible employees is met, the eligible business will ordinarily determine this by reference to the 28‑day period ending at the end of the most recent pay cycle for the employee, that ended before 1 March 2020 or 1 July 2020.

For an eligible business participant, the hours of active engagement are based on those for the month of February 2020.

EMPLOYEE BUSINESS PARTICIPANT
ELIGIBLE FOR FULL RATE WORKED IN THE BUSINESS FOR 20 OR MORE HOURS PER WEEK, ON AVERAGE DURING THE REFERENCE PERIOD WAS ACTIVELY ENGAGED IN THE BUSINESS FOR 20 OR MORE HOURS PER WEEK ON AVERAGE DURING THE REFERENCE PERIOD
ELIGIBLE FOR PARTIAL RATE WORKED IN THE BUSINESS FOR LESS THAN 20 HOURS PER WEEK, ON AVERAGE DURING THE REFERENCE PERIOD WAS ACTIVELY ENGAGED IN THE BUSINESS FOR LESS THAN 20 HOURS PER WEEK ON AVERAGE DURING THE REFERENCE PERIOD

The Commissioner of Taxation has provided alternative tests where an employee’s or business participant’s hours were not usual during the applicable reference period (for example, where the employee was on unpaid leave, volunteering during the bushfires, or not employed for all or part of February 2020 or June 2020) or where the individual is paid salary, wages, commission, bonus or allowances that are not tied to an hourly rate or contracted rate or where there are no (or incomplete) records of the relevant hours.

There is an immediate need for eligible businesses to assess the entitlement to the higher or lower rate for each eligible employee as soon as possible in order to be ready for the extended JobKeeper program from 28 September 2020.

Eligible businesses are required to notify the Commissioner of Taxation whether the higher or lower JobKeeper amount applies to an eligible employee or eligible business participant.