The JobKeeper Payment scheme is a temporary subsidy for businesses significantly affected by coronavirus (COVID-19). Eligible employers, sole traders and other entities can apply to receive $1,500 per eligible employee per fortnight from 30 March 2020, for a maximum period of 6 months. A jobkeeper fortnight is defined as the fortnight beginning on the 30th of March 2020 and each subsequent fortnight up to the fortnight ending on the 27th of September 2020. This full amount of $1,500 must then be paid to all eligible employees, whether they are full time, part time or long-term casuals
- JobKeeper is paid to employers. The ATO does not make payments directly to employees.
- Enrolment for April and May closes on 31 May 2020
PER PAYMENT OVERVIEW
- A monthly business declaration must be made by the 14th day of each month, starting in June, to receive reimbursements for payments made in the previous month.
The employer will continue to receive the subsidy payments for eligible employees while they are eligible for the payments. While the program is expected to run for 6 months, payments will stop if the employee is no longer employed by the business.
Business Participation Entitlement
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. A limit applies of one $1,500 JobKeeper payment per fortnight for one eligible business participant. Sole traders, one partner in a partnership, one beneficiary of a trust, and one director or shareholder of a company may be regarded as an eligible business participant.
Qualification for the jobkeeper scheme
An entity qualifies for the jobkeeper scheme if:
- On the 1st of March 2020, the entity carried on a business in Australia or was a non-profit body that pursued its objectives principally in Australia; and
- The entity has satisfied the “decline in turnover test” (comprising the “basic test” & “alternative test”).Basic Test
The “basic test” is defined in the Rules as being satisfied where the entity’s projected GST turnover falls short of the entity’s current GST turnover for a relevant comparison period by at least the specified percentage.
That specified percentage being:
- 15% for an ACNC registered charity (excl. schools);
- 50% for an entity with aggregated turnover in excess of $1b; and
- 30% for all other entities.The turnover test period is either:
- A calendar month that ends after the 30th of March 2020 and before the 1st of October 2020; or
- A quarter that starts on the 1st of April 2020 or the 1st of July 2020.The relevant comparison period is the period in 2019 that corresponds to the turnover test period.
The entity has discretion to choose to use a calendar month or a quarter when applying the test.
Your eligible employees
Your employee is eligible under the JobKeeper Payment scheme if they:
- are employed by you (including those stood down or re-hired)
- were, at 1 March 2020, either a
- full-time, part-time or fixed term employee, and not a casual employee
- long-term casual employee (employed on a regular and systematic basis for at least 12 months) and not a permanent employee of any other employer
- on 1 March 2020 were 18 years of age or older (if they were 16 or 17 they can also qualify for fortnights before 11 May 2020, and continue to qualify after that if they are independent or not undertaking full time study)
- were an Australian resident as at 1 March 2020 within the meaning of the Social Security Act 1991, which requires that they reside in Australia, and are an Australian citizen, the holder of a permanent visa, or a Protected Special Category Visa Holder.
- were not in receipt of any of these payments during the JobKeeper fortnight
- government parental leave or Dad and partner pay
- a payment in accordance with Australian worker compensation law for an individual’s total incapacity for work
- agree to be nominated by you
You cannot claim for any employees who either:
- were first employed by you after 1 March 2020
- left your employment before 1 March 2020
- have been, or have agreed to be, nominated by another employer.
Casual employees are only eligible if they were employed by you on a regular and systematic basis for at least 12 months at 1 March 2020.
If you decide to participate in the JobKeeper Payment scheme, nominate all your eligible employees. You should not choose to nominate only some employees. However, individual eligible employees can choose not to participate.
If your employees have multiple employers, they can usually choose which employer they want to nominate through. However, if your employees are long-term casuals and have other permanent employment, they must choose the permanent employer and cannot nominate you. They cannot be nominated for the JobKeeper payment by more than one employer.
<< Author: Hina Singh >>