Government announces JobKeeper Subsidy to keep workers employed

31 March 2020

On 30 March 2020, the Australian Government announced a new six-month JobKeeper subsidy package to assist businesses to keep their workers employed. The package will operate as a wage subsidy of $1,500 per fortnight to be paid by the ATO directly to employers for each eligible employee who was employed on 1 March 2020.

The wage subsidy is anticipated to assist around 6 million workers and brings the Government’s total COVID-19 economic stimulus package to $320 billion.

Employers will be eligible for the subsidy if:

  • Their business has a turnover of less than $1 billion and their turnover will be reduced by more than 30 per cent relative to a comparable period a year ago (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 per cent relative to a comparable period a year ago (of at least a month); and
  • The business is not subject to the Major Bank Levy.

Not-for-profit entities (including charities) and self-employed individuals that satisfy the turnover tests that apply for businesses are eligible to apply for JobKeeper payments.

The JobKeeper payment covers full time and part time employees, including employees that have been stood down. It will also cover casual employees who have been with their employer for at least the previous 12 months.

Payments will cover a six-month period from 30 March 2020, with the first payments to be made in May and backdated. An employee will only be eligible to receive this payment from one employer.

If you require more information or would like some support accessing any of the support measures announced, please contact the Findex Tax Advisory Team.

Findex has developed a Government Stimulus Health Check and free Business Wellbeing Toolkit to help businesses manage potential risks and take full advantage of eligible stimulus assistance. Book your Health Check here.