COVID-19 Update: Adding Newly Eligible Employees To JobKeeper

The ATO has issued guidance on JobKeeper Payment and added newly eligible employees for August 2020 JobKeeper fortnights

Nominating new employees

These new employees must have been employed on 1 July 2020 and meet other eligibility criteria. This can include employees that:

  • were employed after 1 March 2020, or
  • were employed on 1 March 2020 and did not meet the eligibility requirements, but do as of 1 July 2020 (for example, they turned 18 years old after 1 March 2020 but before 1 July 2020).

Note that adding newly eligible employees can differ slightly depending on your client’s reporting method.

COVID-19 welfare supplement extended

A determination has been made to extend the period of the COVID-19 supplement to recipients of JobSeeker, Parenting Payment, Youth Allowance, Austudy Payment, Special Benefit, Partner Allowance and Widow Allowance. It extends the period from 25 September to 18 December 2020 and provides for $250 per fortnight (it was initially $550). The ATO says a further legislative instrument will be made to extend payments to 30 December 2020.

ATO will consider penalty remission

If your business is affected by COVID-19, the ATO says it will consider remitting interest and penalties if these were incurred after 23 January 2020. It says that even if the interest or penalties were incurred before then, your client should still contact the ATO as it can consider whether circumstances before 23 January 2020 would make a remission of interest or penalties appropriate, arrange to stop interest being charged while your client is affected by COVID-19, or for the duration of a payment plan if one has been put in place.

If you have any tax queries on your JKP, please contact out consultants at W Wen & Co on (02) 9871 3429 or (02) 8090 2449.

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