Extension of time to enrol for the JobKeeper scheme

Extension of time to enrol for the JobKeeper scheme and changes to the full-time student eligibility

Some good news for employers wishing to enrol in the JobKeeper scheme, the Commissioner had now extended the deadline to enrol from 30th April 2020 until 31st May 2020.

You will still be able to claim for the fortnights in April and May, provided you enrol by 31st May 2020 and meet all the eligibility requirements for each of those fortnights. This includes having paid your employees by the appropriate dates for each fortnight.

For the first two fortnights (30th March – 12th April and 13th April – 26 April), the ATO will now accept late payments provided the minimum $1,500 payment is made for each fortnight and payments are made before 8th May 2020. You will not be eligible to claim JobKeeper for the first two fortnights if you do not pay your employees by this date.

Eligible employees are employees who:

  • Are currently employed by the eligible employer (including those who have been stood down or re-hired);
  • Were employed by the employer at 1 March 2020;
  • Are full-time, part-time, or long-term casuals (as casual employed on a regular and systematic basis for longer than 12 months as at 1 March 2020);
  • Are a permanent employee of the employer, or if a long-term casual employee, not a permanent employee of any other employer;
  • Were at least 16 years of age at 1 March 2020, with the exception of full-time students who are 17 years old and younger and who are not financially independent (see below for details);
  • Are an Australian citizen, the holder of a permanent visa, or a Special Category (Subclass 444) Visa Holder at 1 March 2020;
  • Were a resident for Australian tax purposes on 1 March 2020; and
  • Are not in receipt of a JobKeeper payment from another employer.

Changes to  full-time Students:

Full-time students aged 16 and 17 years old who satisfy the basic so eligibility criteria, will no longer be eligible for the JobKeeper Payment unless they are financially independent.  This change will apply prospectively, so any employers who have made the minimum $1,500 to those students who will now be ineligible for the payment are not financially disadvantaged.

As noted in the explanatory statement to the existing rules, the benefit of the JobKeeper payment to workers over the age of 16 is justified for those who are financially independent and who require the security provided by participation in the JobKeeper scheme and the maintenance of the working relationship that it affords.   

Parental Leave:
Employees receiving Parental Leave Pay from Services Australia are not eligible for the JobKeeper Payment. However, employees on parental leave from their employer will be eligible.

Workers Compensation:
Employees receiving workers compensation will be eligible for the JobKeeper Payments if they are working, for example on reduced hours, but will generally not be eligible if they are not working.

Other income support payments:
If your employees receive the JobKeeper Payment, this may affect their eligibility for income support payments and they must report their change in circumstances to Services Australia online at my.gov.au or by telephone, to avoid incurring a debt that will be required to be repaid.

If you need advice or assistance on any of the above information, please do not hesitate to contact us

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