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JobKeeper Payment - FAQs

Written by Sarah Pogson . April 07, 2020
6 min read

With the introduction of the "JobKeeper Payment", there are several questions that are consistent with employers and employees surrounding the lack of clarity for eligibility and confusion in entitlements.

Treasury have since released a Fact Sheet including the most common frequently asked questions to provide further understanding on the JobKeeper payment and how it can apply to you and your business.

Resource Links

Above is the FAQs Fact Sheet available from Treasury you can download. This resource provides an overview of the measure, including examples to help gain an understanding of how the measure can be applied to your business.

JobKeeper FAQs

  • What Is The Definition Of Turnover?
    Turnover will be defined according to the current calculation for GST purposes and is reported on Business Activity Statements. It includes all taxable supplies and all GST free supplies but not input taxed supplies. There are some modifications for businesses that are part of a GST group.

  • Is This Turnover Test Related To Only Turnover In Australia, Or Does It Include Overseas Operations As Well?
    Under the GST law, only Australian based sales are included and therefore, only Australian based turnover is relevant. A decline in overseas operations will not be counted in the turnover test.

  • If I Have Stood Down My Employees After 1 March 2020, And Are No Longer Paying Them, Do I Need To Pay Them, For What Period And By When?
    Yes. You can claim JobKeeper for employees that were stood down after 1 March 2020. To be eligible in relation to these employees, you will need to pay them a minimum of $1,500 per fortnight (before tax) for the payment periods of the JobKeeper Scheme.

    The first payment period under the scheme is from 30 March 2020 to 12 April 2020. Where an employer pays their staff monthly the monthly payment must be equivalent to the required fortnightly payment.

    For all following payment periods you will need to continue to pay your employees a minimum of $1,500 per fortnight (before tax), before the end of the payment period.

  • My Business Has Only Just Started Or My Business Has “Lumpy” Income. How Can I Self-Assess That My Turnover Has Fallen 30 Per Cent?
    To establish that a business has faced or is likely to face a 30 per cent or more or 50 per cent or more fall in turnover, most businesses would be expected to establish that their turnover has fallen in the relevant month or quarter (depending on the Business Activity Statement reporting period of that business) relative to their turnover in a corresponding period a year earlier.

    Where a business was not in operation a year earlier, or where their turnover a year earlier was not representative of their usual or average turnover, (e.g. because there was a large interim acquisition, they were newly established, were scaling up, or their turnover is typically highly variable), the Tax Commissioner will have discretion to consider additional information that the business can provide to establish that they have been adversely affected by the impacts of the Coronavirus.

    The Tax Commissioner will also have discretion to set out alternative tests that would establish eligibility in specific circumstances (e.g. eligibility may be established as soon as a business ceases or significantly curtails its operations). There will be some tolerance where employers, in good faith, estimate a 30 per cent or more or 50 per cent or more fall in turnover but actually experience a slightly smaller fall.

  • My Turnover Has Not Decreased By 30 Per Cent This Month, But I Believe It Will In The Coming Month. Am I Eligible?
    You can apply for the payment if you reasonably expect that your turnover will fall by 30 per cent or more (or 50 per cent or more for businesses with a turnover of $1 billion or more) relative to your turnover in a corresponding period a year earlier. The ATO will provide guidance about self-assessment of actual and anticipated falls in turnover.

  • It Is Unlikely That My Turnover Will Decrease By 30 Per Cent In The Coming Month, But Can I Apply Later If My Turnover Decreases In One Of The Subsequent Months?
    If a business does not meet the turnover test at the start of the JobKeeper scheme on 30 March 2020, the business can start receiving the JobKeeper Payment at a later time once the turnover test has been met. In this case, the JobKeeper Payment is not backdated to the commencement of the scheme. Businesses can receive JobKeeper Payments up to 27 September 2020.

  • My Business Is A Partnership. Can Each Partner Receive A JobKeeper Payment?No. Only one partner can be nominated to receive a JobKeeper Payment along with any eligible employees, noting a partner cannot be an employee.

  • Can Trusts Receive The JobKeeper Payment?
    Trusts can receive JobKeeper payments for any eligible employees. Where beneficiaries of a trust only receive distributions, rather than being paid salary and wages for work done, one individual beneficiary (that is, not a corporate beneficiary) can be nominated to receive the JobKeeper Payment.

  • I Am A Company Director That Receives Director Fees. Am I Eligible?
    An eligible business can nominate only one director to receive the payment, as well as any eligible employees. Only one person in a director capacity may receive the payment and that individual may not receive the payment as an employee.

  • I Am Paid As A Shareholder. Am I Eligible?
    An eligible business that pays shareholders that provide labour in the form of dividends will only be able to nominate one shareholder to receive the JobKeeper Payment.

  • Can Employers Receive Both The JobKeeper Payment And The Supporting Apprentices And Trainees Wage Subsidy?
    Eligible small businesses can receive the 50 per cent wage subsidy for apprentices and trainees in the Supporting Apprentices and Trainees measure from 1 January to 31 March 2020, and the JobKeeper Payment. Where small businesses receive the JobKeeper Payment, they are not eligible to receive the apprentice and trainee wage subsidy from 1 April 2020 onwards.

The full FAQs Fact Sheet can be downloaded from Treasury's website here.

If you would like to discuss any of these measures and what they mean for you and your business, our team is available to assist you. Please don't hesitate to talk with us on (02) 4229 2211 or you can send your enquiry online.

*The above information was correct at the time of publishing and subject to change*
Written by Sarah Pogson . April 07, 2020
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