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Suite 501, Level 5,
7 Secant Street,
Liverpool NSW 2170

Call Us Today On 02 9600 7760

We have our accountants on call to assist with Business Relief Packages.

Enquire Today or Fill In Our Form And We Will Contact You.

Note that this grant is for businesses with turnover of $30,000 - $75,000.

How to Apply
  • Applications are now open and close 18 October 2021.
  • Business owners need to apply themselves – accountants are not permitted to apply on behalf of clients.
  • If you have difficulties with the online application process, you can call Service NSW to complete the application over the phone, however this should be a last resort due to limited call centre staff and high call volumes.
How Much
  • Employing & Non-employing Businesses (E.g. Sole traders) – Fortnightly payments of $1,500.
  • Paid as fortnightly payments in arrears, backdated to 26 June. So we expect payments will start to flow within 10 days of your approval.
  • Once deemed eligible, business will receive automatic fortnightly payments. Business will not need to re-apply each fortnight, but are required to notify Service NSW if they have a change in their employee headcount.
Key Eligibility
  • A decline in turnover of 30% or more over a minimum 2-week period within the Greater Sydney Lockdown period (commenced 26 June and due to end 30 July 2021), compared to the same period in 2019. The decline in turnover must be due to the Public Health Order.
  • Aggregated national annual turnover between $30,000 - $75,000 for the year ended 30 June 2020.
  • For employing businesses, you must maintain your headcount as at 13 July 2021 while they continue to receive Micro-Business Grant payments. Standing down employees is still maintaining employment and doesn’t drop your headcount. Similarly, voluntary resignations are also ok. What cause issues with your headcount are terminations and redundancies.
  • For non-employing entities, the business receiving the payments must be the primary income source for the associated person. Individuals with more than one non-employing business may only claim for one business.
  • Have an ABN and were operating in NSW on 1 June 2021.
  • Ineligible entities include those primarily earning passive income (rent, interest or dividends).
Interaction with Centrelink Covid-19 Disaster Payments
  • Employing Businesses - Employees can receive the Centrelink Covid-19 Disaster Payments if their employer is receiving the Micro-Business Grant. This includes business owners that are on the payroll of the business (sole traders are not considered employees and must not be claiming Centrelink Covid-19 Disaster Payment).
  • Non-Employing Businesses – Individuals associated with the business are not eligible to receive Centrelink Covid-19 Disaster Payment for any period.
Information Required to Apply
  • You will need to supply a copy of your 2020 tax return, Notice of Assessment, BAS or other documentation to demonstrate your turnover of $30,000 - $75,000.
  • Evidence of 30% or more decline in turnover. This will be either:
    • >Business bank account statements (separate from any personal accounts), or
    • >Accountant’s letter. If you do need an accountant’s letter from us please email julyanne@silveryoung.com.au.
  • Headcount as at 13 July 2021. Headcount is the number of persons who are employed in NSW and who are permanent (full time or part time), or casual staff that have been employed by the business for more than 12 months.
How Funding May Be Used
  • The Micro-Business Grant payments must be used for business costs incurred from 1 June 2021. Including, but not limited to salaries & wages, utilities and rent, advice, marketing, perishable goods or other costs. The expenditure should be linked to helping the business survive, maintain relationships with their employees and in order to be in a position to trade when restrictions are lifted.
  • An important distinction from the JobKeeper system that the grant doesn’t need to be paid to the employees. You may choose to use the Micro-Business Grant payments to support salaries and wages costs, but you may also use the payments for other business operating expenses.
  • To reiterate, you must be able to evidence you used the Micro-Business Grant Payments to fund business costs. Our experience is that Service NSW audits review how you spend the grant money and require you to evidence it. Ability for the sole trader to utilise the funds as drawings to replace normal business profit drawings is unclear from the guidelines. Under strict interpretation, it appears drawings wouldn’t be eligible business costs, but you are given a long period to have costs for (back to 1 June).
Alternative Circumstances
  • The standard application process is quite rigid, however it seems as though Service NSW has the power to consider all manner of alternative circumstances.
  • No standard “alternative tests” exist like there was in the JobKeeper system
  • Business owners are encouraged to call Service NSW to discuss their specific circumstances to obtain a special acceptance for their business when they fall outside of the standard eligibility.
  • Specifically listed circumstances include new businesses, business affected by drought, bushfires or other natural disasters, business acquisition, disposal or restructure and sole traders or small partnerships impacted by sickness, injury or leave.
In Detail & Common Questions
  • Aggregated turnover $30,000 - $75,000 – The turnover test is aggregated, which includes entities that are connected with you or is an affiliate. These rules are complex, so if there is potential for these aggregation rules impacting your claim, you should contact us to obtain advice. We would not recommend seeking advice from Service NSW for this matter (only this matter, other issues can be resolved with Service NSW).
  • Cash vs Accruals – This is a very common question and is still unclear. We have interpreted the rules one way, but reserve making a public statement on this without more certainty. We are also awaiting verbal confirmations from Service NSW. Our industry body is also lobbying the Government for clarity on this point. If the question of cash vs accruals impacts you passing the decline in turnover test, or turnover threshold, you should hold off claiming until there is more certainty.
  • The terms and conditions require that the business complies with the law at all times, including public health orders and Covid-19 restrictions – this opens them up to recovering the grant where the business doesn’t adhere to public health orders/restrictions or potentially other laws.
  • Headcount Notification Requirement – Businesses are required to notify Service NSW “immediately” if the headcount of the business declines over the period of the payment due to any actions of the business.
  • If you permanently cease trading you must notify Service NSW immediately.
  • Record Keeping – The business must keep all payroll records, tax invoices, bank statements etc to evidence the claim and how the Micro-Business Grant payments were spent on the business for a period of 5 years. They suggest they will review claims up to 24 months after the claim.
APPLY NOW
Help Available
To Request Assistance with Assessing Your Eligibility – Please contact bookings@silveryoung.com.au to secure your assessment time. This will involve working through your information to determine which grants you can apply for. Bookings will commence Wednesday 28/07/2021.

Disclaimer
This information is provided in good faith to assist you in understanding the availability of the grants. You should review the Service NSW guidelines and terms and conditions in full prior to completing a claim for any grant. We also note that the above is based on recently announced guidelines and terms and conditions. These tend to get updated and change over time, therefore the above may become invalid. If you have any issues with the grant, you should contact service NSW for assistance and guidance.
Note that this grant is for businesses with turnover of $75,000 - $50m. A separate update will follow regarding the Micro-Business Grant for businesses with turnover between $30,000 - $75,000. This update relates only to the JobSaver Payment.

A short video running through key points will be prepared and posted to our website shortly.

How to Apply
  • Applications are now open and close 18 October 2021.
  • Business owners need to apply themselves – accountants are not permitted to apply on behalf of clients.
  • If you have difficulties with the online application process, you can call Service NSW to complete the application over the phone, however this should be a last resort due to limited call centre staff and high call volumes.
How Much
  • Employing Businesses – 40% of weekly payroll, with a minimum payment of $1,500 per week up to a maximum $10,000 per week
  • Non-Employing Entities (e.g. sole traders) - $1,000 per week
  • Paid as fortnightly payments in arrears, backdated to 18 July. So we expect payments will start to flow from around 2 August.
  • Once deemed eligible, business will receive automatic fortnightly payments. Business will not need to re-apply each fortnight, but are required to notify Service NSW if they have a change in their employee headcount.
How is it Calculated
  • Generally by looking at W1 of the most recent 2021 financial year BAS provided to the ATO prior to 26/6/21. Exclude any payments to contractors. For many businesses this will be the March 2021 BAS.
  • Weekly payroll is calculated by dividing the W1 figure by the number of days in the BAS period and multiply by 7, this is the weekly payroll amount for grant purposes.
    • E.g. W1 on your March 2021 BAS that reports wages for 1/1/2021 – 31/3/2021 was $175,000 / 90 days in the period x 7 days = $13,611 weekly payroll. Grant calculated at 40% = $5,444 weekly grant amount. Paid as $10,888 per fortnight.
    • E.g. W1 on your March 2021 BAS that reports wages for 1/3/2021 – 31/03/2021 was $90,000 / 31 days in the period x 7 days = $20,322 weekly payroll. Grant calculated at 40% = $8,129 weekly grant amount. Paid as $16,258 per fortnight.
  • The grant caps out at $10,000 per week at an equivalent of annual gross wages of $1.3m.
  • Businesses that also operate in other states will need to adjust their wages amount to be only wages paid to employees who usually worked or were based in NSW during the relevant BAS period.
Key Eligibility
  • A decline in turnover of 30% or more over a minimum 2-week period within the Greater Sydney Lockdown period (commenced 26 June and due to end 30 July 2021), compared to the same period in 2019. The decline in turnover must be due to the Public Health Order.
  • Aggregated national annual turnover between $75,000 - $50m for the year ended 30 June 2020.
  • For employing businesses, you must maintain your headcount as at 13 July 2021 while they continue to receive JobSaver payments. Standing down employees is still maintaining employment and doesn’t drop your headcount. Similarly, voluntary resignations are also ok. What cause issues with your headcount are terminations and redundancies.
  • For non-employing entities, the business receiving the payments must be the primary income source for the associated person. Individuals with more than one non-employing business may only claim for one business.
  • Have an ABN and were operating in NSW on 1 June 2021.
Interaction with Centrelink Covid-19 Disaster Payments
  • Employing Businesses - Employees can receive the Centrelink Covid-19 Disaster Payments if their employer is receiving JobSaver. This includes business owners that are on the payroll of the business.
  • Non-Employing Businesses – Individuals associated with the business are not eligible to receive Centrelink Covid-19 Disaster Payment from 18/7/21 if claiming the JobSaver Grant.
Information Required to Apply
  • If your business was eligible for the Covid-19 Business Grant, you will generally be eligible for the JobSaver Payment. You still need to apply for the JobSaver Grant, but you’ll just need to provide further information about employee headcount and payroll.
  • You will need to supply a copy of your 2020 tax return, Notice of Assessment, or other documentation to demonstrate your turnover of $75,000 - $50m
  • Most recent BAS for the 2021 financial year that was lodged with the ATO before 26 June 2021 which shows W1 amount. If this isn’t available, you’ll need to contact Service NSW for alternative arrangements.
  • Businesses in the “List of highly impacted industries” will not need an accountant’s letter as part of the application. The impacted industries list for this grant now includes numerous construction business types.
  • If your business is not in the “List of highly impacted industries”, then you will need an Accountant’s letter from us to evidence the decline in turnover. If you already have a letter from us for the Covid-19 Business Support Grant, you can resubmit that letter. If you do need an accountant’s letter from us please email julyanne@silveryoung.com.au.
  • Headcount as at 13 July 2021. Headcount is the number of persons who are employed in NSW and who are permanent (full time or part time), or casual staff that have been employed by the business for more than 12 months.
How Funding May Be Used
  • The JobSaver payment must be used for business costs incurred from 18 July 2021. Including, but not limited to salaries & wages, utilities and rent, advice, marketing, perishable goods or other costs. The expenditure should be linked to helping the business survive, maintain relationships with their employees and in order to be in a position to trade when restrictions are lifted.
  • An important distinction from the JobKeeper system that the grant doesn’t need to be paid to the employees. You may choose to use the JobSaver payments to support salaries and wages costs, but you may also use the payments for other business operating expenses.
  • To reiterate, you must be able to evidence you used the JobSaver Payments to fund business costs. You can’t take it out as a loan or drawings from the business. Our experience is that Service NSW audits review how you spend the grant money and require you to evidence it.
In Detail & Common Questions
  • Aggregated turnover $75,000 - $50m – The turnover test is aggregated, which includes entities that are connected with you or is an affiliate. These rules are complex, so if there is potential for these aggregation rules impacting your claim (e.g. going over the $50m limit), you should contact us to obtain advice. We would not recommend seeking advice from Service NSW for this matter (only this matter, other issues can be resolved with Service NSW).
  • Cash vs Accruals – This is a very common question and is still unclear. We have interpreted the rules one way, but reserve making a public statement on this without more certainty. We are also awaiting verbal confirmations from Service NSW. Our industry body is also lobbying the Government for clarity on this point. If the question of cash vs accruals impacts you passing the decline in turnover test, or $75k turnover threshold, you should hold off claiming until there is more certainty.
  • Salary Sacrifice Arrangements – The payroll calculation operates off of the W1 amount on BASs, and therefore salary sacrificed super for example are not included in W1. This is noted by Service NSW and no adjustments are to be made, i.e. salary sacrifice arrangements will reduce the claim where the business isn’t receiving the maximum.
  • The terms and conditions require that the business complies with the law at all times, including public health orders and Covid-19 restrictions – this opens them up to recovering the grant where the business doesn’t adhere to public health orders/restrictions or potentially other laws.
  • Headcount Notification Requirement – Businesses are required to notify Service NSW “immediately” if the headcount of the business declines over the period of the payment due to any actions of the business.
  • If you permanently cease trading you must notify Service NSW immediately.
  • Record Keeping – The business must keep all payroll records, tax invoices, bank statements etc to evidence the claim and how the JobSaver payments were spent on the business for a period of 5 years. They suggest they will review claims up to 24 months after the claim.
  • Monthly IAS vs BAS – The guidelines/terms and conditions define payroll as using Business Activity Statements. Our interpretation of this is that monthly instalment activity statements which only report wages, wouldn’t be applicable, these are Instalment Activity Statements. At this stage this matter is unclear. Without a conversation with Service NSW, the most recent BAS (activity statement that also reports GST) would be the appropriate choice. For larger entities this may still be monthly, but for many this will be the last quarterly BAS.
APPLY NOW
Disclaimer
This information is provided in good faith to assist you in understanding the availability of the grants. You should review the Service NSW guidelines and terms and conditions in full prior to completing a claim for any grant. We also note that the above is based on recently announced guidelines and terms and conditions. These tend to get updated and change over time, therefore the above may become invalid. If you have any issues with the grant, you should contact service NSW for assistance and guidance.
COVID-19 support information is still being released and we are expecting more announcements on Monday 26/07/2021 and Tuesday 27/07/2021.

The Government is yet to announce details on:
  1. How to test for Job Saver and how to claim it
  2. How to test for Micro Business Grant and how to claim it
  3. How the different grants interact with each other
  4. If claiming one grant impacts your ability to claim another
So, we are writing this to you to inform you that without this critical information it is not possible for any business to accurately determine which grants they should be applying for.

In such uncertain times, we need to pause to receive the facts, before we can assess which grants we CAN/SHOULD apply for to ensure we get the highest level of support.

Where possible, we will produce videos explaining how the Government Grants work and how you can access them. The videos will be posted on our Website early next week www.silveryoung.com.au.

The government have made it clear that they want business owners to be lodging the claims and not accountants. Many of our clients are asking for assistance in working through the information and assessing their eligibility. Other clients are asking for letters to check and confirm the downturn. We are always here to help, and we want to ensure we can do this efficiently so that we may help as many clients as possible.

Due to the volume of work involved with these grants we will not be assessing the eligibility of our clients without being requested.

To Request Assistance with Assessing Your Eligibility – Please contact bookings@silveryoung.com.au to secure your assessment time. This will involve working through your information to determine which grants you can apply for. Bookings will commence Wednesday 28/07/2021.

To Request an Accountant’s Letter – Please contact julyanne@silveryoung.com.au This is where you do not require our input on assessing your eligibility but you require us to confirm your data through an accountant’s letter.

(Landlord/Tenant Support & Bank/Loan Support)

There have been a few announcements for support for landlords as well as tenants. There is also support available in the loan/banking sector.

Land Tax Relief
Where a landlord provides a reduction in rent to a tenant between 1 July 2021 and 31 December 2021, landlords may be eligible for a reduction in land tax of up to 100% for the 2021 land tax year. This is the land tax bill that was issued at the start of the year, so if this has already been paid, you should receive a refund where you are eligible for this relief.

The amount of the land tax relief is calculated as the amount of the rent reduction provided to an eligible tenant between 1 July 2021 – 31 December 2021, up to a maximum of 100% of the land tax payable for the relevant parcel of land. i.e. If you provided a rent reduction of $3,000 over the 6 months and your land tax bill for that parcel of land was $6,000, you would receive land tax relief of $3,000. If you provided rent reduction of $10,000 and your land tax bill for that parcel of land was $6,000, you would receive land tax relief of $6,000.

Note that this is only available where it is a permanent rent reduction. If the rent is to be paid back later, this is considered a deferral and is not eligible.

Eligibility criteria apply including:
  • For commercial tenants – The tenant has turnover of up to $50m and is eligible to be approved for the 2021 Covid-19 NSW Business Grant, Micro-business Covid-19 Support Grant and/or the JobSaver Scheme, or
  • For residential tenants – The tenant has had a reduction in household income of 25% or more as a result of Covid-19 and Residential Tenancy Support Payment isn’t being claimed.
Applications will be available via Service NSW shortly.

If you are a tenant – Check with your landlord about whether they can claim this incentive. The landlord won’t be out of pocket and you’ll receive discounted rent. Not all landlords pay land tax, so it isn’t always available.

Other Residential & Commercial Lease Considerations
  • Residential 60 day freeze on evictions due to arrears - where the tenant is impacted by Covid-19. Dates covered are 14 July to 11 September 2021. Some criteria apply.
  • Residential Tenancy Support Payment - provides up to $1,500 per tenancy agreement where landlords agree to reduce the rent for Covid-19 impacted residential tenants from 14 July 2021. Not this may exclude a claim from the above land tax relief. Again, this must be a permanent reduction, not a deferral. Claims will be available in a few weeks via Fair Trading NSW.
  • Commercial leasing changes – Landlords will need to first attempt mediation before taking action against the tenant for failure to pay rent/outgoings. Lessees are only protected under this ruling where they have annual turnover of up to $50m and are eligible for one of the aforementioned NSW Covid grants. Dates currently covered are 13 July – 20 August 2021. Action can still be taken for breaches that occurred prior to this period.

Banking/Loan Support
Impacted individuals and businesses should contact their bank to see what support is available. The Australian Banking Association has announced support measures including:

Business Banking – Up to 3 months repayment deferrals with loan terms extended accordingly for small businesses & refunds of merchant terminal fees for up to 3 months

Home Loan Support – Range of measures including deferrals on a month by month basis.

Links For Further Information:
Land Tax Relief
Residential Tenancy Support
60 day freeze on evictions & Residential Tenancy Support Payment
Commercial Leasing Changes
Bank Support
Overnight, Service NSW has changed the guidelines for the 2021 Covid-19 Business Grant and narrowed the testing dates for the decline in turnover test. The new dates are now 26 June – 17 July 2021, instead of 26 July.

We have enquired with Service NSW about the reasons for this, especially considering the stricter lockdown we have entered into for this week. They have advised this is shortening of the test period is intentional and will not be extended back. They consider this grant to apply to the first 3 weeks of lockdown, with the JobSaver grant to be in place for the ongoing lockdown situation.

We note that applications are still open until 13 September 2021, so there is plenty of time to claim. If your cashflow allows, you may choose to hold off on making the claim until we have all the information about the different grants and timing, but of course if you need the injection of funds then the grant is ready to apply for given the new date range.
We now have further information and ability to apply for the first Covid-19 Support grant.

The 2021 Covid-19 Business Grant is now available for applications (The lump sum $7,500 - $15,000 one-off grant)

You can apply for the grant and review specific eligibility criteria here - https://www.service.nsw.gov.au/transaction/2021-covid-19-business-grant

We understand the Service NSW website has been crashing for claims, so you may have some delays.

Please note you have until 13th September 2021 to apply.

You can only apply once, so do not apply if you expect to have a greater decline in turnover in the coming week

KEY POINTS:
  • The business owner needs to apply for the grant themselves, Service NSW will not allow us to apply for the grant on your behalf as your accountant/tax agent.
  • Many industries and claims will be able to be made without an accountant’s letter, but if you apply for the grant and there is a requirement for an accountant’s letter, please contact Julyanne from our office on julyanne@silveryoung.com.au so that we can arrange this for you.
  • Aggregated Annual Turnover must be between $75,000 - $50m. They are testing based on 2020 financial year, however alternative tests may be available if 2020 isn’t an appropriate test.
  • You must have Australian wages of $10m or less as at 1 July 2020.
  • Level of the grant varies depending on your decline in turnover.
  • Turnover test is a decline in turnover for a minimum 2 week period from 26 June 2021 to 26 July 2021 vs the same period in June/July 2019. E.g. 1 July 2021 – 14 July 2021 vs 1 July 2019 – 14 July 2019. Only 1 application may be made. i.e. if you’ve had a 30% decline now and make the claim, but by next week you’ve had a 50% decline, you can’t make a claim to top up the difference. Since there is one more week left to test and stricter lockdown measures have just come into place, consider holding off your application until you trade through to 26 July to check for your 2 weeks with the worst decline.
  • Cash vs accruals (invoice date). Turnover is tested using the same basis as what you lodge your BAS. For most small businesses this will be the cash method, so turnover will be whatever hit your bank account for the relevant period. Check your BAS and download a copy while you are there because you’ll need a copy for the application.
  • No information has been provided regarding alternative test periods for your decline where 2019 isn’t appropriate. E.g. for a new business that started in 2020. In these instances you’ll need to call Service NSW to review your specific circumstances and make an assessment on your case.
  • You must maintain your employee headcount as at 13 July 2021. This is defined as “maintenance of the employer-employee relationship consistent with employment law. Employers will, however, remain eligible if the employees voluntarily resign.” We also note that the headcount excludes casual staff that have not been employed by the business for more than 12 months. From discussions with Service NSW, standing down employees still satisfies this test. Redundancies or terminations are what they are trying to avoid.
  • One claim per ABN. If you run multiple businesses under 1 ABN, only 1 claim is available.

Job Saver Grant & Micro Business Grant Update:
These are the two ongoing wage subsidy type payments. No further information or application process has been released for these grants as yet. We will update you once we receive further information.

Note that this support payment is proposed to start from the 4th week of the lockdown (from 25 July).

To receive the Job Saver Grant you must maintain your employee headcount. Whilst the guidelines for this grant haven’t been released, if it follows the same definition as the Support Grant, then the definition would be as above. Again if the same definition is applied, the headcount date will be 13 July 2021. Based on this definition, we expect that if you stand-down your employees, this should still pass the test for headcount. Without the actual guidelines we can’t be certain of the treatment though. You may need to restart payments to employees once the grant is being paid.

https://www.service.nsw.gov.au/campaign/covid-19-help-businesses/grants-loans-and-financial-assistance#jobsaver

NSW Disaster Payment
If you have employees that have reduced hours because they can’t attend work due to the lockdown, you can direct them toward the Centrelink link below to seek support payments. Note that a requirement is that they don’t have any appropriate paid leave entitlements.

https://www.servicesaustralia.gov.au/individuals/services/centrelink/covid-19-disaster-payment/who-can-get-it/nsw-eligibility-rules
The State and Federal Governments have announced greater support for individuals and businesses due to the NSW lockdown.

We have been here before and the team at Silver & Young are investing many hours into this topic. BUT, at the moment these are just announcements and the firm detail and application process is still being finalised. Applications for some business support likely start from 19 July.

We supported you through this last year and we will do the same again!

Here is what we know so far:

TO DO
Business - No Claims Available Yet
Register your interest in the support so that you are notified once applications are open - https://www.service.nsw.gov.au/covid-19-business-support-2021

Employees - Available Now
Check eligibility and apply for COVID-19 Disaster Payment. Must be completed by the individual - https://www.servicesaustralia.gov.au/individuals/services/centrelink/covid-19-disaster-payment

WHAT SUPPORT HAS BEEN ANNOUNCED?
For Employees
COVID-19 Disaster Payment is a weekly support payment delivered through Centrelink for those who can’t attend work and lost income after 7 days of lockdown. The recent announcement boosted the amount of the payment after the lockdown reaches 4 weeks. There have also been other loosening of criteria to allow more individuals to claim.

For Micro Businesses (Turnover $30,000 - $75,000)
Small businesses or sole traders with turnover of $30,000 - $75,000 may be able to apply for a grant of up to $1,500 per fortnight with applications expected to be available from late July 2021. You will need to prove a 30% reduction in turnover.

Small Business Wage Support (Turnover $75,000 - $50m)
Small Businesses with turnover of $75,000 - $50m may be eligible for a wage subsidy of between $1,500 up to a maximum of $10,000 per week from week 4 of a lockdown onwards for businesses that have a 30% reduction in turnover during the lockdown. The amount of the subsidy is calculated as 40% of weekly payroll up to the maximum $10,000 per week. Businesses must maintain their level of staff. We don’t know exactly how this will be measured or submitted yet – No action can be taken yet

Small Business Grant (Businesses with annual wages up to $10m)
Small businesses with annual wages of up to $10m may be eligible for one-off lump sum grant of $7,500 - $15,000. This is higher than previously announced grants. The amount of the grant depends on your decline in turnover. $7,500 with a 30% decline, $10,500 with a 50% decline or $15,000 with a 70% decline. Applications expected to be available from 19 July. We don’t know exactly how this will be measured or submitted yet – No action can be taken yet

Other Support
  • Payroll tax waivers of 25% for businesses with annual wages of $1.2m - $10m and have experience a decline in turnover of 30% or more. Deferrals and interest free payment plans will also be available.
  • We understand the ATO will be supportive in their chasing of debts and setting up payment plans.

FOCUS ON MENTAL HEALTH
We know that most people do not come to their accountant for health advice. But these can be difficult times with the negative vibe in the air, mixed with the financial uncertainty, this can cause strains on the mental health of the business owner, employees and loved ones.
So, we ask all our clients and friends – please remember we live in one of the greatest countries on earth and the government showed us last time they will support businesses. The state of your mental health is going to be key for your business to get through any difficulties. So please do what you can to keep calm and look after your wellbeing. Remember there is an enormous amount of support available and early intervention is key to a speedy recovery. The link below may help.
Dear Valued Client,

Yesterday, the Government announced the JobKeeper Payment scheme to deal with the ongoing impact of COVID-19.

Please refer to the [Fact Sheet] for more details
Eligible Employers?
  • Turnover less than $1 billion and will be reduced by more than 30% (relative to the comparable period a year ago); or
You must have been in an employment relationship with eligible employee as at 1 March 2020 and each eligible employee is currently engaged. Not-for-profit entities, charities and self-employed individuals (with no employees) that meet turnover test that apply for businesses are eligible to apply.

Eligible Employees?
  • Currently employed by the eligible employer (including those stood down or re-hired);
  • Were employed by the employer as at 1 March 2020;
  • Are full-time, part-time or long-term casuals (longer than 12 months with regular employment as at 1 March 2020);
  • 16 years of age or greater;
  • Australian Citizen, permanent visa holder, Protected Special Category Visa Holder, non-protected Special Category Visa Holder residing in Australia greater than 10 years, or a Special Category (Subclass 444) Visa Holder;
  • Are not in receipt of Jobkeeper Payment from another employer.
Application Process The information contained in this email is in the nature of general comment and to be used for information purposes only. This is not to be relied upon or taken as advice.

For more information please contact our office on 9600 7760.
Dear Valued Client,

Following on from our recent email regarding the JobKeeper Payments, the Federal Parliament has now passed the $130 billion historic scheme as well as the administrative rules. The ATO have now launched their website of information on how the system will operate. There is an enormous amount of information and detail provided for in the ATO Website [Link] and the Treasury Fact Sheets [Link].

In the interest of not overloading you with information, here are the critical takeaways:

EMPLOYERS
Critical Dates
  • ASAP - Register an intention to apply on the ATO website https://www.ato.gov.au/Job-keeper-payment/
  • ASAP – Review and note down which of your employees are eligible https://www.ato.gov.au/General/JobKeeper-Payment/Employees/Eligible-employees/
  • ASAP - Notify employees you will be applying for JobKeeper for them. Both employer and employee must complete the “JobKeeper Nomination Notice” - https://www.ato.gov.au/Forms/JobKeeper-payment---employee-nomination-notice/
  • From 20 April Onwards – You will be able to enrol for the JobKeeper Payment through the ATO Business Portal
  • 30 April – Cut off of enrolments for JobKeeper for the month of April
  • 30 April – Cut off to make sure all eligible employees have been paid at least $1,500 per fortnight. This is allowing late payment of wages for the month of April 2020 only. Future wages must be paid on time to be eligible for JobKeeper payments.
  • 4 May Onwards – Confirmation of eligible employees you will claim JobKeeper Payment for. This is where you will be reporting to the ATO which employees you will be claiming the JobKeeper Payments for.
Turnover Tests
  • Basic Test – Your business is eligible if your GST turnover has, or is likely to be reduced by more than 30% (relative to the same period a year ago). E.g. Actual March 2020 vs March 2019, Projected April 2020 vs April 2019 or Projected April-June 2020 vs April – June 2019
  • Alternative Test – The ATO will have the power to review alternative evidence to establish the turnover reduction of 30%. For example, this will be available for businesses that have only just started, or has ‘lumpy’ income. More information to come.
My employee normally receives less than $1,500 per fortnight
  • In order for an employee to be eligible for the JobKeeper Payment, they must be “topped up” to at least $1,500 per fortnight (before tax) if they are normally on a lesser wage.
Can I back-pay employees that were stood down?
  • For the month of April only, the ATO is allowing back payment of the minimum $1,500 per fortnight per employee. As noted above this must be paid to the employees BEFORE 30 April 2020. All future payments must be paid on time to employees in line with your normal pay cycle.
  • Care should be taken here when paying employees that otherwise wouldn’t be getting paid. If the business or employee aren’t eligible, you may have difficulty in reclaiming those payments from the employee.
When does super apply?
  • New rules are being introduced by government – the following are based on government announcements and subject to legislation/regulations being passed
  • It is expected that if the employee is still working in the business and earning more than $1,500 per fortnight, super will apply on the full wage amount including the JobKeeper amount.
  • It is expected if the employee was stood down, super shouldn’t apply whilst they aren’t working for the business.
  • It is expected if the employee normally receives, for example, $1,000 per fortnight, the additional $500 top up from the JobKeeper Payment shouldn’t attract super.
When can casuals receive JobKeeper Payments?
  • See full detail of eligible employees in link above.
  • Eligible long-term casual employee are casuals that have been employed on a regular and systematic basis for at least 12 months as at 1 March 2020 and not a permanent employee of any other employer.
  • Not a permanent employee of any other employer is an important factor and the employee will need to declare this on the “JobKeeper Nomination Notice”
When will the first JobKeeper Payments be made from the ATO?
  • Treasury has indicated first payments will be made from the first week of May.
  • Potentially there may be delays if you don’t actively use Single Touch Payroll “STP” or you need to use the alternative test for turnover
SOLE-TRADERS, ACTIVE DIRECTORS/SHAREHOLDERS, TRUST BENEFICIARIES AND PARTNERS OF PARTNERSHIP NOT ON WAGES
See critical dates and turnover test detail above (ignoring employee related items). The ATO is due to provide more information for sole traders and “business owners actively engaged in their business” soon. One active business owner per entity may be eligible for the JobKeeper Payment. This is the case even in a Partnership of unrelated people, or an active shareholder and an active director – only one claim per entity is allowed.

The information contained in this email is in the nature of general comment and to be used for information purposes only. This is not to be relied upon or taken as advice.

For more information please contact our office on 9600 7760.
Dear Valued Client,

In an attempt to deal with the impact of the coronavirus on the Australian economy, the government announced a $17.6 billion stimulus package.

Please note the below measures are subject to the relevant legislation passing through parliament. At this stage, parliament is not scheduled to resume until the 23rd of March.

What’s in it for you?
A stimulus payment:
  • a one-off $750 payment all social security, veteran and other income support recipients and eligible concession card holders. This includes those on Newstart, those who have commonwealth seniors health cards, and families receiving family tax benefits.
  • The payment will be tax-free and will not count as income for social security, farm household allowance and veteran payments.
What’s in it for your business?
A cash-flow boost:
  • Eligible businesses that withhold tax on their employees’ wages will receive a payment equal to 50% of the amount withheld, up to a maximum payment of $25k (across all lodgments).
  • Delivered as a credit in the ATO activity statement system upon lodgement of eligible activity statements from 28 April 2020:
    1. Quarterly lodgers will be eligible to receive the payment for the March and June 2020 quarters;
    2. Monthly lodgers will be eligible to receive the payment for the March to June 2020 lodgments. Note that, to provide an equivalent benefit as that received by quarterly lodgers, monthly lodgers payment for the March activity statement will be calculated at a rate of three times (150%).
  • The payment will be tax tree
Incentives for businesses:
  • Increased threshold for instant asset write off – lifting to $150,000 (from $30,000) for new or second hand assets
    1. Asset must be first used or installed from the announcement until 30 June 2020.
  • Accelerated depreciation deductions – deduct 50% of the cost of a new asset on installation with normal depreciation rules applying to the balance.
    1. Asset acquired after the announcement and first used or installed ready for use by 30 June 2021.
Supporting employers in employing apprentices and trainees:
  • Eligible employers can apply for a wage subsidy of 50% of the apprentice’s or trainee’s wage paid during the 9 months from 1 January 2020 to 30 September 2020.
  • Employers will be reimbursed up to a maximum of $21k per eligible apprentice or trainee ($7k per quarter).
  • Available to small businesses employing fewer than 20 full-time employees who retain an apprentice or trainee.
  • The apprentice or trainee must have been in training with a small business as at 1 March 2020.
  • Access to the subsidy will be available after an eligibility assessment is undertaken by an Australian Apprenticeship Support Network (AASN) provider.
  • Employers can register for the subsidy from early-April 2020. Final claims for payment must be lodged by 31 December 2020.
What’s in it for affected regions?
Support for affected areas:
  • The Government has set aside an initial $1 billion allocation to support those regions and communities that have been disproportionately affected by the economic impacts of Coronavirus.
  • It will also include additional assistance to help businesses identify alternative export markets or supply chains.
  • Targeted measures will also be developed to further promote domestic tourism.
  • The ATO will provide administrative relief for certain tax obligations for taxpayers directly affected by the Coronavirus outbreak, on a case-by-case basis.

    The information contained in this email is in the nature of general comment and to be used for information purposes only. This is not to be relied upon or taken as advice.

    For more information please contact our office on 9600 7760.
    Dear Valued Client,

    In an attempt to deal with the ongoing impact of COVID-19, the government announced an additional $66 billion stimulus package today.

    What’s in it for individuals?

    Income Support [Fact Sheet]
    Expansion to the eligibility of income support payments and established a new, time-limited Coronavirus supplement to be paid [$550 per fortnight] for both existing and new recipients of the eligible payment categories.

    Household Support [Fact Sheet]
    Two household support payments of $750 each to social security, veteran and other income support recipients and eligible concession card holders. Payable in March 2020 and July 2020.

    Superannuation Early Access [Fact Sheet]
    Temporary release of superannuation to individuals affected by COVID-19. Limits apply to $10,000 per 2020 & 2021 financial years. These amounts will be tax free and you must satisfy specific criteria.

    Superannuation Support to Retirees [Fact Sheet]
    Temporarily reduced the minimum drawdown requirements of account based pensions and similar accounts by 50% for the 2020 + 2021 financial years.

    What’s in it for your business?

    Assistance with cashflow - PAYG refund [Fact Sheet]
    Under the enhanced scheme, employers will receive a payment equal to 100 per cent of their salary and wages withheld (up from 50 per cent), with the maximum payment being increased from $25,000 to $50,000. In addition, the minimum payment is being increased from $2,000 to $10,000.

    An additional payment is also being introduced in the July – October 2020 period. Eligible entities will receive an additional payment equal to the total of all of the Boosting Cash Flow for Employers payments they have received. This means that eligible entities will receive at least $20,000 up to a total of $100,000 under both payments.

    Loan Guarantees [Fact Sheet]
    The Government will guarantee 50% of new unsecured loans for businesses with turnover under $50 million. The Government will provide eligible lenders with a guarantee for loans – conditions apply – see fact sheet for more detail.

    Temporary relief of financial distressed businesses [Fact Sheet]
    Designed to protect businesses as a result of the economic impacts of Coronavirus. The elements of the package provide a safety net to make sure when the crisis is over they can return to business as usual. See the fact sheet for more details.

    For owners or directors of a business that are currently struggling due to the Coronavirus, the ATO will tailor solutions for their circumstances, including temporary reduction of payments or deferrals, or withholding enforcement actions including Director Penalty Notices and wind-ups.

    The information contained in this email is in the nature of general comment and to be used for information purposes only. This is not to be relied upon or taken as advice.

    For more information please contact our office on 9600 7760.