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  • More employees now able to access JobKeeper

    The ATO has implemented changes to the JobKeeper employee eligibility rules following the registration of the Coronavirus Economic Response Package (Payments and Benefits) Amendment Rules (No.7) 2020.

    These changes mean employers already enrolled in JobKeeper may be able to receive the JobKeeper payment for more of their employees.

    We have released new information on ato.gov.au/JobKeeper to further support employers with JobKeeper payments in these difficult times.

    Importantly the key date for assessing which employees are eligible for JobKeeper is now 1 July 2020, rather than 1 March 2020. Additionally, employees that meet the eligibility requirements can now be nominated by a new employer if their original employment with a JobKeeper employer ended before 1 July 2020. Employees can still only be nominated by one employer at any given time.

    “JobKeeper enrolments are still open. We encourage all businesses to review the eligibility criteria and if eligible, enrol in the program to start receiving JobKeeper payments. Employers already receiving JobKeeper are encouraged to review the new eligibility criteria against all employees and updated guidance is now available on our website,” said Deputy Commissioner James O’Halloran.

    Employers should start paying new eligible employees a minimum of $1,500 per fortnight from the JobKeeper fortnight 10, which commenced on 3 August.

    For the fortnights commencing on 3 August 2020 and 17 August 2020, the ATO is allowing employers until 31 August 2020 to meet the wage condition for all new eligible employees included in the JobKeeper scheme under the 1 July eligibility test.

    Employers can commence claiming for the JobKeeper reimbursement for the new eligible employees from 1 September when they can lodge their August monthly declaration claim.

    “The ATO is here to support those doing it tough and knows how vital the JobKeeper payment is to the community. We have provided more than $37 billion in JobKeeper payments to around 989,000 businesses and not-for-profits. This means around 3.6 million individuals are now covered by JobKeeper,” said Deputy Commissioner James O’Halloran.

    If you’re an individual, sole trader, small or medium business and you're having difficulty meeting your tax and super obligations because of COVID-19, contact the ATO’s Emergency Support Infoline on 1800 806 218 to discuss tailored support options.

    “We are committed to providing the community with the help they need through this difficult period, and have a range of practical support options available,” said Deputy Commissioner James O’Halloran.

    Further announcements by the Government regarding the extension to the JobKeeper Payment program are subject to the passage of legislation. These changes will not impact JobKeeper payments until after 28 September 2020 and guidance will be provided in due course.

    Further information and support

    For information about current JobKeeper support and assistance available from the ATO and information about the JobKeeper extension go to ato.gov.au/JobKeeper

    For information about other support and assistance available from the ATO go to ato.gov.au/coronavirus  

    Last modified: 19 Aug 2020QC 63439