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Updated 8 May 2020.

Extension of time to enrol and new exemptions for the Federal Government’s $130 billion wage subsidy JobKeeper Payment,

The Commissioner has extended the time to enrol for the initial JobKeeper periods, from 30 April 2020 until 31 May 2020.

You must enrol through the ATO by 31 May to 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 for each fortnight.

For the first two fortnights (30 March – 12 April, 13 April – 26 April), the ATO 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 8 May 2020. If you do not pay your staff by this date, you will not be able to claim JobKeeper for the first two fortnights.

The State Government have also announced that the JobKeeper Payment is exempt from payroll tax and WorkCover premiums, for the gap between an employees normal wage and the $1500 a fortnight JobKeeper Payment.

Our Small Business Support & Assistance Officer, Colin Thompson, is available to help you make sense of your entitlements. Reflecting on his interactions with over 120 local businesses to date, his key takeaways is;

“No matter how much you have read or think you know about the support on offer, there is always something new to learn and seek for your business.”

Colin is keeping our Quick Reference Guide to available financial packages updated as announcements are made, and is available to businesses in the Greater Hamilton region for a free, 1:1, independent, no obligation chat to help you make sense of what you’re entitled to.

  • Self-employed businesses without Employees are eligible for JobKeeper including: 
    • Sole Traders 
    • Partnerships (only 1 Partner is eligible) 
    • Trusts (only 1 Beneficiary is eligible) 
    • Companies (only 1 Director is eligible) 
  • The Commissioner of Taxation has discretion where businesses have started within the last 12 months
  • JobKeeper is not income tested, so an Employee who has been stood down may earn additional income without the payment being affected
  • Employees not on the books (paid in cash), are NOT eligible for JobKeeper.
  • Employees receiving JobKeeper will need to include the amount of $1500 in reporting for child support
  • Any amounts paid by Services Australia whilst receiving JobKeeper will need to be repaid
  • It was initially unclear whether a business could claim the Apprentices and Trainees wage subsidy AND  JobKeeper. This has now been clarified and Businesses can claim both payments but only for wages paid up to 30/3/20. After that you can claim either or, but not both of these payments. 

Note: JobKeeper provides similar support to other government packages* irrespective of whether businesses have employees or not, as it equates to $19,500 ($1,500 per fortnight for 6 months).

*See the $20,000 Boosting Cash Flow for Employers payment, and the $10,000 Business Support Fund.


To make an appointment with Colin, contact Council’s Business Development Officer, Daniel Shaw, via ecodev@sthgrampians.vic.gov.au or 0429 578 216. 

You can access the Quick Reference Guide and other resources on our Business & Tourism Support Hub, and local businesses should join the Greater Hamilton Business & Tourism COVID-19 Facebook Group and stay connected. 

Colin Thompson is helping local businesses through free 1:1 consultations, call us to arrange a phone chat and see Colin’s experience on his Small Business Mentoring Service profile.