Understanding the JobKeeper and JobSeeker Program Extensions
AFA News 29 July 2020. Last week was a big week for Government economic announcements, with a financial position update on Thursday 23 July 2020 revealing an $86B deficit in 2019/20 and an expectation of a $186Bn deficit in 2020/21.
Net debt is expected to increase to $677B by 30 June 2021. GDP is expected to decline by 3.75% in the 2020 calendar year.
On Tuesday 21 July 2020, the Prime Minister and the Treasurer announced plans to extend both the JobKeeper program and the JobSeeker Supplement.
The details are as follows:
The JobKeeper program will be extended to 28 March 2021 on the same eligibility criteria (30% reduction in turnover for businesses under $1B in turnover, and 50% for those above $1B),
however with reduced payment levels and a two tier system, based upon the level of hours an individual worked in the four weeks prior to 1 March 2020. This will come into effect in the following two phases:
- From 28 September 2020 to 3 January 2021, $1,200 per fortnight per employee or $750 for employees assessed as working less than 20 hours per week.
- From 4 January 2021 to 28 March 2021, $1,000 per fortnight per employee or $650 for employees assessed as working less than 20 hours per week.
All current participants in the program will retain the payment through until 27 September 2020, however, to remain eligible after 27 September 2020, employers will need to meet the turnover reduction test in each quarter from June 2020 onwards.
Please click here for a copy of the Government’s fact sheet on the JobKeeper extension.
The JobSeeker Supplement will also continue from 25 September 2020 through to 31 December 2020, however subject to a reduced rate and additional eligibility tests.
- The key features will be as follows:
- The supplement will be reduced from $550 per fortnight to $250 per fortnight.
- Beneficiaries will be allowed to earn up to $300 per fortnight without any loss of benefits.
- The Asset test and liquid assets test will resume from 28 September 2020.
- Reintroduction of the mutual obligations, which means that JobSeekers will once again be required to look for work.
Please click here for a copy of the Government’s fact sheet on the JobSeeker extension.
For any questions on the Government’s economic stimulus packages, please email the AFA at email@example.com.