On the 9th April 2020, the Treasurer released the rules for administrating the JobKeeper scheme.
You need to act NOW, as you must lodge before 26th April 2020 to claim the first two fortnightly payments. The Rules are complex, however the following is a summary of what you need to know and do.
Quick Look back at Eligibility of JobKeeper:
To be eligible, you must:
- Be operating a business as at 1st March 2020;
- Have had, or reasonably estimate, a significant decline in turnover (for most businesses, this is a 30% reduction as compared to the corresponding month (or quarter) in the prior year);
- Be an employer of eligible employees or a Sole Trader
What you must do now:
Step 1. You MUST Register your interest with the ATO BEFORE the 21st May 2020 (via the website here or from 20th April 2020 here,) if you wish to participate in the JobKeeper scheme;
Step 2. Pay your eligible employees $1,500 LESS TAX per fortnight from 30th March
Step 3. Check you and your employees meet the eligibility requirements.
Step 4. You must notify all your eligible employees that you are intending to claim the JobKeeper payment on their behalf
Step 5. and you must send a JobKeeper Employee Nomination Notice to all your employees to complete and return to you by the 26th April – you can access the prescribed form here
Step 6. From Monday 20th April you can enrol for the JobKeeper payment using the ATO Business Portal. To use the ATO Business Portal, you will need a myGovID linked to your ABN in Relationship Authorisation Manager (RAM).
Use this link to set this up at www.ato.gov.au/mygovid
Step 7. In the online form, provide bank details and indicate if you are claiming as a Sole Trader or a Business
Step 8. Specify the estimated number of employees who will be eligible for the first two JobKeeper fortnights (30 Mar – 12 Apr) & (13 Apr – 26 Apr)
Each month, you will need to reconfirm that your reported eligible employees have not changed through ATO online services, the Business Portal or via your registered tax agent. This will ensure you will continue to receive the JobKeeper payments from us.
You do not need to retest your reported fall in turnover, but you will need to provide some information as to your current and projected turnover. This will be done in your monthly JobKeeper Declaration report. The turnover eligibility test can be done by periods of one month (starting March 2020), or quarterly (starting April 2020).
And finally If your eligible employees change or leave your employment, you will need to notify the ATO through your monthly JobKeeper Declaration report.
JobKeeper payments can also be accessed by certain business owners (known as: eligible business participant) that are not paid a wage from their business, including:
- For Sole Traders;
- One individual partner in a partnership;
- One individual adult beneficiary of a trust (where that beneficiary is not an employee); and
- One individual shareholder / director of a company.
An individual is an eligible business participant where the individual is not employed by the business at any time in the fortnight because the individual is the owner of the business. Similar to the eligible employee requirements, the eligible business participant must satisfy the 1st March 2020 requirement (i.e. 16 years of age of over, engaged in the business and an Australian citizen or certain Visa holder as at 1st March 2020).
A partnership, trust and company can only nominate one individual as the eligible business participant, and the individual must be actively engaged in the business carried on by the entity
So, what do I need to do RIGHT NOW?
Determine, and collate information to substantiate, your actual, or estimated, decline in turnover.
Work out which of your employees are “eligible employees”
Make sure you pay your eligible employees at least $1,500 per fortnight LESS TAX (at the appropriate rate)
Register with the ATO before 31st May 2020
As your tax agent/business advisors, we are here to support you.
Please contact us if you need any help with your JobKeeper payment lodgements and we can discuss how we can assist you.