The Australian Taxation Office (ATO) have now released further information about the JobKeeper payment. Whilst is doesn’t answer all questions, it is a step in the right direct with providing guidance on how to apply and eligible employees.
For all information available you can click here to go to the ATO website. Below we have summarised the next steps you should take.
APPLY FOR JOBKEEPER
Step 1 – Assess your businesses eligibility for the JobKeeper payment.
Please refer to the ATO website here, to assess the eligibility criteria your business must first meet.
Step 2 – Calculate your projected business turnover
We have attached a spreadsheet here to assist you with determining if you will satisfy the 30% drop in business turnover. The ATO has indicated that it is vitally important that you have workings on how you calculated your projected turnover, as you may be required to provide evidence of your claim and how you calculated the turnover decrease. Providing false or inaccurate information may result in having to repay JobKeeper payments to the ATO.
Step 3 – Determine your eligible employees
Please refer to the ATO website here on who are eligible employees to receive payment.
Our attached spreadsheet above also includes an area where you can complete your workings on assessing eligible employees.
Step 4 – Seek advice from your HR expert
The HR laws concerning your employees are complex and differ between awards and employment agreements.
We are unable to provide advice in relation to employment issues such as the stand down provisions, leave entitlements and suggest that you speak with your HR expert to ensure any decisions regarding your employees are well considered and documented.
Step 5 – Nominate your employees
Before you enrol to receive JobKeeper payments, you need to notify each eligible employee that you intend to nominate them as eligible employees under the JobKeeper scheme.
They must agree to be nominated by you by completing the JobKeeper employee nomination notice and returning it to you for your records.
The nomination form does not need to be provided to the ATO however employers are required to keep a copy of the completed form as part of their record keeping obligations under the law.
Step 6 – Continue to pay at least $1,500 to each eligible employee per JobKeeper fortnight
You must pay at least $1,500 to each eligible employee per fortnight, before tax.
The first JobKeeper fortnight is the period from 30 March to 12 April and each JobKeeper fortnight follows after that. For the first two fortnights (30 March – 12 April, 13 April – 26 April), the ATO will accept the minimum $1,500 payment for each fortnight has been paid by you even if it has been paid late, provided it is paid by you by the end of April. This means that you can make two fortnightly payments of at least $1,500 per fortnight before the end of April, or a combined payment of at least $3,000 before the end of April.
Payroll software providers are currently implementing system upgrades to enable JobKeeper payments to be easily processed through payroll, you can contact your provider directly for support if needed.
Step 7 – Set up the Business Portal
Please ensure that in the coming days you have set up and registered for the Business Portal to enable you to process your application for the JobKeeper payment.
You can following the link here on how to register for the Business Portal if you don’t already have access.
Step 8 – Enrol for JobKeeper payment (from 20 April onwards)
From 20April 2020 you can enrol with the ATO for the JobKeeper payment using the Business Portal and authenticate with myGovID. You must do this by 30 April 2020 to claim JobKeeper payments for the first two fortnights in April.
During this process you provide your bank account details and specify the estimated number of employees who will be eligible for the first JobKeeper fortnight (30 March – 12 April) and the second JobKeeper fortnight (13 April – 26 April).
Step 9 – Provide confirmation of eligible employees you will claim JobKeeper payment for (from 4 May 2020 onwards)
From 4 May 2020 you will need to access the ATO Business Portal to apply for the JobKeeper payment for your eligible employees.
Further information on the details you must submit for payment to be processed are contained here.
SOLE TRADERS AND OTHER OWNERS ACTIVELY ENGAGED IN THEIR BUSINESS
Sole Traders and other businesses in the form of a company, trust or partnership can also qualify for the JobKeeper payments where a business owner (a shareholder, adult beneficiary or partner) is actively engaged in the business, or a director is actively engaged in the business. This is limited to one entitlement for each entity even if there are multiple owners or participants. The ATO advises there will be more information available soon about the eligibility of these businesses for the JobKeeper payment.
NEED FURTHER HELP?
Over the coming days and weeks we will continue to keep our clients updated on JobKeeper payments via email.
If you have questions specific to your circumstance and require our assistance further, please feel free to reach out. Please note that there will be a fee attached to personalised service provided to assist you.
This is a huge new system being rolled out, which ordinarily would be months in the making. We are doing our best to ensure we provide you the correct and most up to date information. For further updates, please also follow us on Facebook, we are regularly adding valuable content!