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JobKeeper Payment… the process and more

Posted by Northadvisory on April 29, 2020

On 15 April 2020, the ATO released their guidance regarding the JobKeeper Payment.

We have compiled the update below to advise on the most relevant points, and outlined steps that need to be taken for eligible businesses to receive it.

There is (and should be) a lot of communication between North Advisory and yourself regarding this process, and to that end we have established a new email address:

jobkeeper@northadvisory.com.au

Please send all communication regarding the JobKeeper Payment to this email address to ensure it receives the appropriate attention. We will endeavour to respond to your enquiry within 24 hours.

The JobKeeper process

16 April to 20 April – Notify North Advisory of your intent to claim JobKeeper
20 April – Enrolment for eligible employers with a 30% fall in turnover
4 May – Application – nomination of eligible employees
By 31 May – Receive subsidy for the period of March 2020 – April 2020
May to October – Ongoing evaluation

Lady working while on her laptop while talking on her phoneNotify North Advisory of your intent to claim JobKeeper

If you assess that your business is eligible for JobKeeper (see criteria below), please notify us via an email to jobkeeper@northadvisory.com.au.

It is important for us to receive this notification – even if you communicated this to us before through a different channel – as it allows us to add your business to our database and run initial checks to ensure your accounts are up to date and eligible for registration.

Some of the steps we will take to make sure you are ready to receive the subsidy include:

  • confirming single touch payroll is set up correctly
  • adding JobKeeper Payment items to your payroll (if required)
  • running an initial turnover criteria check
  • identifying eligible employees.

This is an evolving process so please keep an eye out for our communications in the future.

Enrolment for eligible employers with a 30% fall in turnoverMan and woman working in a warehouse

To enrol for JobKeeper, you must be an eligible employer, sole trader or a business owner actively engaged in your business.

You have to also be able to show a downturn in turnover of at least 30% to qualify.

How to calculate a fall in turnover for the first fortnight starting 30 March 2020

To calculate your fall in turnover, you can compare either:

  • GST turnover for March 2020 with GST turnover for March 2019
  • projected GST turnover for April 2020 with GST turnover for April 2019
  • projected GST turnover for the quarter starting April 2020 with GST turnover for the quarter starting April 2019.

If, in the first fortnight, you establish that you qualify for the JobKeeper Payment because your turnover has declined by the relevant amount, you remain eligible and do not need to keep testing turnover in the following months. However, you will have ongoing monthly reporting requirements.

The Commissioner of Taxation also has the discretion to set out alternative tests that can establish your eligibility when turnover periods are not appropriately comparable – for example, if your business has been in operation less than a year.

We will provide the information regarding this as soon as it is available.

Colleagues working together with a laptopEnrolment steps

1. Identify your eligible employees for JobKeeper Payment (see Nomination of eligible employees below).

2. Continue to pay at least $1,500 to each eligible employee per JobKeeper fortnight (the first JobKeeper fortnight is the period from 30 March to 12 April). Payments for the 13 April and 26 April fortnight must be made by 30 April 2020.

3. Notify your eligible employees that you are intending to claim the JobKeeper Payment on their behalf and check they aren’t claiming the benefit through another employer or have nominated through another business.

4. Send the JobKeeper employee nomination notice to your nominated employees to complete and return to you by the end of April if you plan to claim JobKeeper Payment for April. Keep it on file and provide a copy to us.

5. From 20 April 2020, you can enrol using the Business Portal or request North Advisory to do it for you via the Tax Agent Portal.

6. In the online form, provide your bank details and indicate if you are claiming an entitlement based on business participation, for example if you are a sole trader.

7. 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).

Application – nomination of eligible employeesWoman working in a Flower farm

The guidelines for eligible employees have been established as:

  • are employed by you (including those stood down or re-hired)
  • were either a
    • permanent full-time or part-time employee at 1 March 2020
    • long-term casual employee (employed on a regular and systematic basis for at least 12 months) as at 1 March 2020 and not a permanent employee of any other employer
  • were at least 16 years of age on 1 March 2020
  • were an Australian resident as at 1 March 2020 that reside in Australia, and are one of an Australian citizen, the holder of a permanent visa, or a Protected Special Category Visa Holder. Employees who are not permanent residents of Australia must notify you of their visa status to allow you to determine if they are eligible
  • were not in receipt of any of these payments during the JobKeeper fortnight
    • government parental leave or Dad and partner pay
    • a payment in accordance with Australian worker compensation law for an individual’s total incapacity for work
  • agree to be nominated by you.

You cannot claim for any employees who:

  • were first employed by you after 1 March 2020, or
  • left your employment before 1 March 2020, or
  • have been, or have agreed to be, nominated by another employer.

Casual employees are not eligible unless they were employed by you on a regular and systematic basis for at least 12 months as at 1 March 2020.

Self-employed woman checking stocksApplication process – available from 4 May 2020

1. Apply to claim the JobKeeper Payment by logging in to the ATO Business Portal or request North Advisory to apply through the Tax Agent Portal.

2. Ensure you have paid each eligible employee a minimum of $1,500 per JobKeeper fortnight before tax.

3. Identify your eligible employees in the application form by

    • selecting employee details that are prefilled from your STP pay reports if you report payroll information through an STP enabled payroll solution, or
    • manually entering employee details in ATO online services or the Business Portal if you do not use an STP enabled payroll solution, or
    • using North Advisory, who will submit a report on your behalf through online services for agents.

4. Submit the confirmation of your eligible employees online and wait for the confirmation screen.

5. Notify your eligible employees that you have nominated them.

Ongoing evaluationBusinessman calculating and checking business chart

Each month, you will need to reconfirm that your reported eligible employees have not changed through ATO online services, the Business Portal or via North Advisory.

This will ensure you will continue to receive the JobKeeper Payment. 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.

If your eligible employees change or leave your employment, you will need to notify us through your monthly JobKeeper Declaration report.

Please contact us on our new email address if you have any questions about the JobKeeper Payment.