The Australian Government has introduced the JobKeeper Payment designed to help businesses affected by COVID-19 to cover the costs of their employees’ wages.
The Government will provide $1,500 per fortnight, per eligible employee, for up to 6 months as part of the $130 billion package. Employers must pass this payment on to their employees.
Eligible employers include businesses structured through companies, partnerships, trusts and sole traders. Self-employed individuals and not-for-profit entities, including charities, will also be eligible.
The JobKeeper Payment is open to full-time, part-time and long-term casuals (employed on a regular basis for at least the last 12 months) and stood down employees. An employee must have been employed on 1 March 2020 and continue to be engaged by that employer. Employees that are re-engaged by the employer on 1 March 2020 will also be eligible.
Employers will be eligible for the JobKeeper Payment if:
- their business has a turnover of less than $1 billion and their turnover will be reduced by more than 30% relative to a comparable prior period (of at least a month); or
- their business has a turnover of $1 billion or more and their turnover will be reduced by more than 50% relative to a comparable prior period (of at least a month); and
- the business is not subject to the Major Bank Levy.
Self-employed individuals will be eligible to receive the JobKeeper Payment if they have suffered or expect to suffer a 30% decline in turnover relative to a comparable prior period (of at least a month).
The JobKeeper Payment will start on 30 March 2020, with the first payment to be received by employers in the first week of May.
Businesses must register their interest in participating in the Payment from 30 March 2020 on the ATO website
For more information for employers and employees: JobKeeper payment