JobKeeper Wage Subsidy

31/03/2020 12:00am

The Australian Government has unveiled a $130B JobKeeper Wage Subsidy, its third and largest response to the COVID-19 pandemic that has shuttered businesses and eliminated jobs.

Prime Minister Scott Morrison has urged businesses to ‘hibernate’ now to protect the safety and wellbeing of their staff and patrons, but reopen and continue to operate when the worst of the health crisis is over.

Under the JobKeeper Program the Government will provide $1,500 per fortnight per employee or self-employed to subsidise wages for a maximum of six months.

Key Points

  • The JobKeeper Payment is designed to help businesses affected by COVID-19 to cover the costs of their employees’ wages so more employees can retain their jobs and continue to earn an income
  • It will be available to full-time and part-time workers, sole traders, and casuals who have been with their employer for 12 months or more
  • JobKeeper will also be available to the self-employed
  • Businesses with a turnover of less than $1B will be eligible if their revenue had dropped by 30% or more since the crisis hit
  • Businesses with a turnover of more than $1B will be eligible if their revenue had dropped by 50% or more since the crisis hit
  • The employer must have been in an employment relationship with eligible employees as at 1 March 2020, and confirm that each eligible employee is currently engaged in order to receive JobKeeper Payment
  • This is a temporary scheme open to businesses impacted by COVID-19
  • Employers must elect to participate, which is done via an application process
  • Employers must register their interest in applying for the JobKeeper Payment via from 30 March 2020
  • The scheme runs from 30 March with first payment to be received in early May.

Unlike the JobSeeker Payment through Centrelink, for people who have been let go due to economic downturn, the JobKeeper plan is to subsidise employee wages, to support businesses to keep them on.

The Australian Government’s announcement follows and initial $17.6B economic stimulus package, and a further $66B of support measures.

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Hood Sweeney is taking every precaution to mitigate the risk of spreading COVID-19. All meetings are currently being held via telephone or other virtual methods, such as Skype, rather than face to face.

And like many businesses, we have ensured we have the technology in place to allow staff who are able to work remotely to do so.

We want to assure all of our clients that we are here for you, to assist and advise as always. We are working to communicate relevant and quickly-evolving government, and other support packages through Client Updates.

If you have questions about these packages, or need information around business continuity, cash flow, finance# and investments*, workforce issues or Technology Services, Hood Sweeney is here for you.

Please contact your relationship manager by phone on 1300 764 200.


* Services provided by Hood Sweeney Securities Pty Ltd AFSL No. 220897 
# Services provided by Hood Sweeney Finance Pty Ltd Australian Credit Licence No. 391396

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