Support measures during COVID-19
As your trusted advisers we understand you look to us for information to help navigate through these uncertain times. Our job is to help clear the fog as best we can.
There has never been a more important time to be connected and informed and we encourage you to contact us – we are here to help.
To help you gain a better understanding of the government stimulus measures that you may be able to access we have summarised the key developments as they stand so far:
Income Support for Individuals
- Coronavirus Supplement of $550 per fortnight for certain individuals receiving eligible income support payments such as Jobseeker Payment, Youth Allowance and various Family payments
- Up to 2 Tax-free payments of $750 to certain social security and concession cardholders
- Commencing 27 April 2020 – Expanded access to Jobseeker (22 years and over) and Youth Allowance payments (under 22 years old) by creating a faster application and claim process
- New applicants can call Services Australia for Jobseeker payments on 132 850 and for Youth Allowance payments on 132 490
- For Jobseeker online visit https://www.servicesaustralia.gov.au/individuals/services/centrelink/jobseeker-payment
- For Youth Allowance online visit https://www.servicesaustralia.gov.au/individuals/services/centrelink/youth-allowance
- Relaxing of the requirements of active job seeking
- Easier identification process
- Applies to sole traders and the self-employed
- Centrelink income tests apply. Partners income will be taken into account.
- Visit this website for more detailed information – https://business.gov.au/Risk-management/Emergency-management/Coronavirus-information-and-support-for-business/Increased-and-accelerated-income-support
Early Access to Superannuation
- For certain individuals and sole traders whose income and employment arrangements have changed
- Individuals receiving Jobseeker and similar payments, Farm Household Allowance and various family payments
- Apply directly to the ATO through the MyGov website at www.my.gov.au
- Visit this website for more detailed information – https://business.gov.au/Risk-management/Emergency-management/Coronavirus-information-and-support-for-business/Early-access-to-superannuation
Reducing the minimum superannuation pension withdrawal amounts by 50%
- Visit this website for more detailed information https://www.ato.gov.au/Rates/Key-superannuation-rates-and-thresholds/?anchor=Minimumannualpaymentsforsuperincomestream
Reducing the social security deeming rates on savings for income test purposes
- Visit this website for more detailed information https://treasury.gov.au/sites/default/files/2020-03/Fact_sheet-Providing_support_for_retirees_to_manage_market_volatility.pdf
Cash Flow Assistance for Businesses
- Assistance in the form of credits of between $20,000 and $100,000 to certain employers depending on level of wages tax withheld to be funded through the BAS system for businesses registered for PAYG withholding before 12 March 2020
- Includes a credit of up to $20,000 to businesses who pay wages but pay less than $10,000 PAYG withholding
- First assistance credit to be made from 28 April 2020 after lodging March 2020 monthly or quarterly BAS
- Businesses must remain active to be eligible for additional assistance following lodgement of the June 2020 BAS. Visit this website for more detailed information https://www.business.gov.au/risk-management/emergency-management/coronavirus-information-and-support-for-business/boosting-cash-flow-for-employers
- For eligible businesses there will be an increase in the Instant Asset Write Off on new and second-hand assets from the current level of $30,000 up to $150,000. For further details visit https://business.gov.au/Risk-management/Emergency-management/Coronavirus-information-and-support-for-business/Instant-Asset-Write-Off
- Accelerated depreciation of 50% on the cost of eligible new depreciable assets over $150,000 plus normal depreciation on the balance. For further details visit https://business.gov.au/Risk-management/Emergency-management/Coronavirus-information-and-support-for-business/Backing-Business-Investment-BBI
- Assistance to keep apprentices employed with wage subsidies of up to $21,000 for certain employers (see www.australianapprenticeships.gov.au and www.dese.gov.au for details)
Government Loans – Freeing up access to Credit
- Federal supported bank loans of up to $250,000 for small business commencing early April 2020 with the government offering 50% guarantee, no security is required to be offered by the business and no repayments for the first 6 month over a maximum loan term of 3 years. For further details visit https://www.business.gov.au/risk-management/emergency-management/coronavirus-information-and-support-for-business/coronavirus-sme-guarantee-scheme
- State funded loan through QRIDA of up to $250,000 for small business interest-free for 12 months. For further details and guidelines visit http://www.qrida.qld.gov.au/current-programs/covid-19-business-support/queensland-covid19-jobs-support-scheme
Banks Small Business Relief Package
- Deferral of repayments on existing bank business loans for 6 months
- Visit this website for more detailed information https://www.ausbanking.org.au/campaigns/financial-hardship/
Easing of insolvency and bankruptcy provisions
- Temporary relief for directors from any personal liability for trading while insolvent
- Extension of time before creditors can initiate bankruptcy proceedings
- Visit this website for more detailed information https://business.gov.au/Risk-management/Emergency-management/Coronavirus-information-and-support-for-business/Temporary-relief-for-financially-distressed-businesses
Tax Obligations relief on a case by case basis with a direct call to ATO Emergency Support Infoline 1800 806 218
- Deferral of tax payable amounts for up to 6 months
- Low-interest tax payment plans
- Varying PAYG instalments back to September 2019 (also includes individuals)
- Changing GST cycle from quarterly to monthly to access refunds earlier
- Visit this website for more detailed information https://www.ato.gov.au/Media-centre/Media-releases/Support-measures-to-assist-those-affected-by-COVID-19/
We know these are uncertain times and there is an overwhelming amount of information out there however we are working very hard to keep you up to date with as much accurate and concise information as quickly as possible.
We are committed to working with you to navigate through these uncertain times.
If you feel inclined to look at a more detailed document, please click here to access our Coronavirus Special Update.
If you would like to chat about this pandemic and its impact on you, your business and family, please contact us and we will do our best to support and guide you.