JobKeeper – Extension of time to enrol and other important updates

In the last week there has been a number of announcements and changes that have come through from both the Federal and State Government in relation to various stimulus packages.  These include clarifications to the JobKeeper payment, further useful ATO information and some South Australian Land Tax relief and grant updates.

JobKeeper program

There have been a number of technical issues highlighted with regards to the JobKeeper program and last week we received the following clarification from the ATO and Treasury.

JobKeeper – extension of time to enrol

The ATO has announced that businesses have until 31 May to enrol for the JobKeeper program.

The ATO website states that:

“If you enroll by 1 May you will still be able to claim for the fortnights in April and May, provided you meet all the eligibility requirements for each of those fortnights.  This includes having paid your employees by the appropriate date each fortnight.

For the first two fortnights (30 March – 12 April, 13 April -26 April), we 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”

It is imperative that if you want to claim the JobKeeper payment for employees from the commencement of the scheme, you must have made the minimum payment of $1,500 per fortnight by Thursday 30 April 2020.  You then need to ensure that you continue to make fortnightly payments throughout May to be eligible for the JobKeeper payment even if you don’t enroll until 31 May.

JobKeeper program – the alternative tests

To determine whether an entity has a decline in turnover of at least 30%, the rules provide a “basic” test and an “alternative” test to apply.  The alternative test however, had to be determined by the Commissioner of Taxation via a Legislative Instrument.  That instrument was finally released on Thursday afternoon.  It provides seven scenarios where an alternative test may be applied.

This means entities can now consider the basic test, and where that isn’t applicable due to an inappropriate comparison period, they can now consider if they fit into one of the seven situations where an alternative test might be appropriate.

JobKeeper – services entities and Treasury update

A technical issue with regards to service entities was raised almost immediately when the original JobKeeper rules were released.  A media release was issued on Friday evening which provides some comments with regards to the JobKeeper program and how the rules will apply to service entities which we have summarised.

Please click here for further information on both of these announcements.

ATO JobKeeper frequently asked questions

The ATO has a dedicated JobKeeper website which can be accessed here.  There is a lot of useful information the website including a frequently asked questions section which is continually being updated by the ATO based on the questions they are being asked via their online communities and the helpline.

Cash flow boost stimulus payments & JobKeeper payments

As a result of the stimulus measures announced over the last month or so, many businesses will start receiving payments from the Federal or State Government.  It is important that these payments are accounted for correctly.  Please go here to see a summary of the accounting treatment for stimulus payments.

South Australian announcements

SA Land Tax relief package announced

The SA Government has recently announced a Land Tax Relief Package for South Australian landlords.  Click here for the RevenueSA website which provides further details on the land tax changes announced.  These changes are designed to provide support to landlords who are providing support to tenants impacted by COVID-19.

SA $10,000 cash emergency grants – applications now open

Eligible South Australian businesses are now able to apply for the SA $10,000 emergency cash grants is now open.  Please find the application link here which also includes the eligibility criteria.

If you have any questions in relation to the above please contact your Holman Hodge adviser.