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Act now! Previous and current Jobkeeper recipients take note. Posted on January 20, 2021

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The Jobkeeper extension for Australian businesses will end on 28 March 2021. There are three types of businesses who need to take note: 1 –those who did not previously qualify for the first extension (Oct – Dec) but now qualify; 2 – those who continue to access it until it’s end date and; 3 – those who have accessed Jobkeeper but do not anymore. There are actions to take with your accountant that vary in levels of urgency.   

The third and final tier of Jobkeeper kicked in on 4 January. Eligible businesses need to demonstrate a decline in GST turnover (generally 30%, or 15%  for charities and not for profit organisations) on the December quarter last year before 31 January. For every eligible employee, the government will pay $1000 or $650 per fortnight towards wages depending on whether they worked more or less than an average of 20 hours per week in the 4 weeks before either 1 March or 1 July 2020.

Many businesses have already stopped payments. Others are nervous about the end of the support scheme. It really depends on how COVID-19 has impacted your business, and how it continually threatens your business, as to what you need to do next.

Those who did not qualify for the first extension but now do

You need to act now.  You need to demonstrate your eligibility before 31 January.  If you need assistance please contact you accountant as a matter of urgency to ensure you can become eligible to claim again.

Those who continue to access Jobkeeper

Once you have demonstrated your ongoing eligibility to the ATO, please don’t wait until the end of Jobkeeper in March before reviewing your options. At this stage, there is no indication of further support beyond this point.

Action: Now is the time to meet with your accountant and make strategic decisions to bolster your financial security, profitability and cashflow beyond Jobkeeper. If you’re not sure where to start, register for this free business workshop for support in the right direction.

Those who have, but no longer access Jobkeeper

For those who have experienced the relief of Jobkeeper, ensure your reporting is accurate and prompt. The Australian Tax Office is focusing on Jobkeeper audits as part of the Federal Government’s economic recovery.

Interestingly, Toyota volunteered $18 million of JobKeeper subsidies back to the Federal Government in January because they did not experience the level of downturn that they originally feared. Super Retail Group, owners of Rebel and MacPack, also voluntarily returned $1.7million in Jobkeeper subsidies after a surprisingly healthy business year.

Action – You will need to talk to your accountant to ensure all of your audit evidence is water tight and ready to go.

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