What is the JobKeeper payment?
The Australian Government announced JobKeeper Payments as a subsidy scheme in March 2020 to help businesses impacted by COVID-19 continue to pay wages. These subsidy payments will be paid by the ATO from the first week of May 2020 as reimbursements.
When does the payment period start?
The JobKeeper payment period began from Monday 30th March 2020 and will apply for 13 full fortnights until Sunday 27th September 2020
How much is it?
The JobKeeper Payments scheme will cover $1,500 wages per fortnight to eligible employees; it also covers sole traders, business founders and directors of a company with some restrictions.
How does it work?
Any business with a turnover of less than $1 billion that has had a reduction in revenue of 30% or more over at least one month since 1st March 2020, is eligible to apply for the subsidy. Eligible employers are paid monthly in arrears $1,500 for each full fortnight per eligible employee paid by the employer.
Accessing JobKeeper payments through Single Touch Payroll (STP)
JobKeeper Payments uses the Single Touch Payroll system, enabling businesses to submit their eligible employees to the ATO for salary reimbursement. The ATO will use this information to determine eligibility for JobKeeper payments. Single Touch Payroll (STP) is a method of reporting information on your payroll to the Australian Tax Office (ATO). These reports must be submitted using a software solution that is Single Touch Payroll compliant, such as payroll or accounting software.
Click below to read more information from the ATO on accessing Jobkeeper Payments through STP.
Frequently Asked Questions
Enrolment opened Monday 20th April 2020 through ATO’s Business Portal. Enrol here.
To be eligible you must satisfy the following criteria:
- On 1st March 2020, you were either in business or running a non -profit in Australia
- You have at least 1 employee (or are an eligible business entity such as a sole trader or director)
- Eligible employees are employed by your business for the fortnights you claim for
- Your business has faced either a 30% fall in turnover if your aggregated turnover is $1 billion or less, or a 15% fall in turnover for ACNC-registered charities
Eligible employees are defined as those who:
- Are currently employed, including those that may have been stood down or re-hired (i.e. actively engaged under a working contract with the business)
- Were employed by the employer as at 1 March 2020;
- Are employed on a full-time, part-time or long-term casual basis (a casual employee that has been employed regularly for longer than 12 months);
- Are at least 16 years of age;
- Are an Australian citizen, holder of a permanent or special visa;
- Are not in receipt of a JobKeeper Payment from another employe
The JobKeeper Payment will be available from 30th March 2020.
You must pay a minimum of $1,500 per fortnight to your eligible employees, withholding income tax as appropriate. The $1,500 per fortnight per employee is a before-tax amount. Where an employee is paid more than $1,500 per fortnight, the employer’s superannuation obligations will not change. Where an employee is having their wages topped up to $1,500 per fortnight by the JobKeeper Payment, it will be up to the employer if they want to pay superannuation on any additional wages paid by the JobKeeper Payment.
The JobKeeper Payment will be available until 27th September 2020.
Casual employees are eligible for the payment if they have been in your employment for 12 months as at 1st March 2020 on a regular and systematic basis. Casual employees are only eligible for the JobKeeper Payment if they are not a permanent employee of any other employer.
Single Touch Payroll (STP) reporting is currently available through payroll, accounting and business management software. Cashflow Manager Gold, Wages Manager and Wages 1-4 is STP ready and available for anyone who wants to report salaries and wages, PAYG withholding and superannuation directly to the ATO.
Being STP compliant will also help the ATO determine your eligibilty for JobKeeper payments. For latest updates visit the ATO’s JobKeeper website.
Single Touch Payroll sends tax and superannuation information from your payroll or accounting software to the ATO as you process your payroll. The way STP information is sent will depend on the software you use. With our software solutions connecting to the ATO is simple. See the ATO website for further information.
If the eligible employee is paid more than $1,500 a fortnight before tax, the employer will only be reimbursed $1,500 per fortnight.
Enrollment for JobKeeper payments when reporting via Single Touch Payroll opened 20th April 2020 and closes on 31st May 2020.
Click below to find out more
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