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Below is a summary of the operation of JobKeeper Stage 2 (28/9/2020-3/1/2021) and JobKeeper Stage 3 (4/1/2021-28/3/2021).  This is followed by a Q&A on JobKeeper that puts these changes into a practical context. You can also download a JobKeeper Stage 1, 2 & 3 Quick Reference Guide at the end of the article.

JobKeeper STAGE 2 – 28/9/2020 – 3/1/2021

Employee Eligibility Test Date:  1/7/2020
Business Turnover Test (standard):  30% reduction in Turnover for July-September 2020 vs July-September 2019 (unless annual turnover higher than $1B then a 50% reduction is needed to qualify, or if the business is a Not for Profit or Charity then a simple 15% reduction is needed to qualify).  Test only to be conducted once, and the business remains eligible until the end of the STAGE
Wage Condition:   Staff will need to be assessed in 2 categories, resulting in 4 groups;

  • Staff who are Recipients of JobKeeper Stage 1, and who are now getting JobKeeper Stage 2;
    – Worked more than 20 hours per week in the 4 weeks before 1/3/2020, must be paid by the participating business, the Wage Condition of at least $1,200 before tax per fortnight.*
    – Worked less than 20 hours per week in the 4 weeks before 1/3/2020 – must be paid by the participating business, the Wage Condition of at least $650 before tax per fortnight.*
  • Staff who are new Recipients of JobKeeper Stage 2 (never got Stage 1);
    – Worked more than 20 hours per week in the 4 weeks before 1/7/2020, must be paid by the participating business, the Wage Condition of at least $1,200 before tax per fortnight.**
    – Worked less than 20 hours per week in the 4 weeks before 1/7/2020 – must be paid by the participating business, the Wage Condition of at least $650 before tax per fortnight.**

*the ATO can set a different test if the 4 weeks before 1/3/2020 were unusual for the employee (for example, due to bushfires)

** the ATO can set a different test if the 4 weeks before 1/7/2020 were unusual for the employee (for example, due to the lockdown restrictions being reintroduced in Victoria/New South Wales, or due to Border Restrictions impacting trade)

Business Eligibility?

My business was not eligible for JobKeeper Stage 1, can I get JobKeeper Stage 2?

If the business meets the turnover test for the September 2020 quarter, then you will be able to access JobKeeper Stage 2, even if you did not qualify for JobKeeper Stage 1.

Is my business eligible for JobKeeper Stage 2?

The business will have to be able to demonstrate that it had a decline in turnover for the September 2020 quarter (July, August and September), when compared to the same period in 2019, in the amount of 30% if the business has an annual turnover of less than $1B or in the amount of 50% if the business has an annual turnover of more than $1B.  Not for profit and Charities have a lower threshold of a 15% reduction.

For businesses that have been receiving JobKeeper Stage 1 it is important to note that even if your actual turnover in the April, May and June period does not meet the level of reduction required you will still be eligible to continue to receive your Stage 1 payments until the end of September, and if your July, August and September periods do actually meet the reduction required then you will be eligible for the JobKeeper Stage 2 Payments, even if your business performed well in the April-June period.

The ATO can set an alternative test for those businesses that had unusual comparison periods (eg August 2019 was unusual for some reason).

New Permanent Employee?

I have hired a new permanent employee since 2/3/2020, are they now eligible for the JobKeeper Stage 2?

Yes, they will be eligible (as long as they meet the other criteria, and your business meets the turnover test criteria) to receive the JobKeeper Stage 2 payments.  The amount of the subsidy that the business will receive, and thus the minimum Wage Condition that the business must pass onto the employee will depend on the number of hours they work in the 4 weeks before 1/7/2020 (see below).

New Casual Employee?

I have hired a new casual employee since 2/3/2020, are they now eligible for the JobKeeper Stage 2?

No, new casual hires will not be eligible as they will not meet the criteria of having served at least 12 months with the business.

Casual ticked over to 12 months?

One of my staff was not eligible for JobKeeper Stage 1 because they were a casual and they had only been working for me for 11 months, are they now eligible for the JobKeeper Stage 2?

Yes, they will be eligible (as long as they meet the other criteria, and your business meets the turnover test criteria) to receive the JobKeeper Stage 2 payments.  The amount of the subsidy that the business will receive, and thus the minimum Wage Condition that the business must pass onto the employee will depend on the number of hours they work in the 4 weeks before 1/7/2020 (see below).

Employee achieved Permanent Residency?

One of my staff was not eligible for JobKeeper Stage 1 because they were not a permanent resident, but they have since become a permanent resident, are they now eligible for the JobKeeper Stage 2?

Yes, they will be eligible (as long as they meet the other criteria, and your business meets the turnover test criteria) to receive the JobKeeper Stage 2 payments.  The amount of the subsidy that the business will receive, and thus the minimum Wage Condition that the business must pass onto the employee will depend on the number of hours they work in the 4 weeks before 1/7/2020 (see below).

Employee Eligibility?

What does a staff member need to be to be eligible for the JobKeeper Stage 2 Payments?

An employee is eligible to receive the JobKeeper Stage 2 Payment if they tick ALL of the following boxes;

  • Were a full time, part time or fixed term employee as at 1/7/2020, OR, Were a long term casual employee with at least 12 months service with the business as at 1/7/2020, AND
  • Were aged 18y or over as at 1/7/2020, (or were 16/17y and financially independent and not undertaking full time study), AND
  • Were an Australian Resident (as per Social Security Act 1991), OR, Were an Australian Resident for the purpose of the Income Tax Assessment Act 1936 and the holder of a Subclass 444 (Special Category VISA as at 1/3/2020, AND
  • Were not receiving Government Parental Leave or Dad and Partner Pay under the Paid Parental Leave Act 2010, or a Workers Compensation Payment for Total Incapacity at the time of claiming the employee (this will roll forward for all JobKeeper Periods until the scheme ends – so the receipt of one of these payments in a JobKeeper Period makes the employee ineligible for that particular Period), AND
  • Is not receiving JobKeeper Payments from another employer

JobKeeper Stage 1, 2 & 3 Quick Reference Guide

   JobKeeper STAGE 1   JobKeeper STAGE 2   JobKeeper STAGE 3  
Total Stage Period: 31/3/2020 – 27/9/2020 28/9/2020 – 3/1/2021 4/1/2021 – 28/3/2021
Employee Eligibility Test Date:     1/3/2020* *from 3/8/2020 will change to 1/7/2020 1/7/2020 1/7/2020
Business Turnover Test (standard):     30%* reduction in Turnover for; March 2020 vs March 2019 OR predicted 30% reduction in Turnover for April-June 2020 vs April-Jun 2019   *unless annual turnover higher than $1B then a 50% reduction is needed to qualify, or if the business is a Not for Profit or Charity then a simple 15% reduction is needed to qualify. 30%* reduction in Turnover for; July-September 2020 vs July-September 2019     *unless annual turnover higher than $1B then a 50% reduction is needed to qualify, or if the business is a Not for Profit or Charity then a simple 15% reduction is needed to qualify. 30%* reduction in Turnover for;  October-December 2020 vs October-December 2019     *unless annual turnover higher than $1B then a 50% reduction is needed to qualify, or if the business is a Not for Profit or Charity then a simple 15% reduction is needed to qualify.
Wage Condition:     All eligible staff must be paid by the participating business, the Wage Condition of at least $1,500 before tax per fortnight Staff will need to be assessed in 2 categories, resulting in 4 groups;   Staff who are Recipients of JobKeeper Stage 1, and who are now getting JobKeeper Stage 2;Worked more than 20 hours per week in the 4 weeks before 1/3/2020 – must be paid by the participating business, the Wage Condition of at least $1,200 before tax per fortnight.*Worked less than 20 hours per week in the 4 weeks before 1/3/2020 – must be paid by the participating business, the Wage Condition of at least $650 before tax per fortnight.*   Staff who are new Recipients of JobKeeper Stage 2 (never got Stage 1)Worked more than 20 hours per week in the 4 weeks before 1/7/2020 – must be paid by the participating business, the Wage Condition of at least $1,200 before tax per fortnight.**Worked less than 20 hours per week in the 4 weeks before 1/7/2020 – must be paid by the participating business, the Wage Condition of at least $650 before tax per fortnight.**   *the ATO can set a different test if the 4 weeks before 1/3/2020 were unusual for the employee (for example, due to bushfires)   ** the ATO can set a different test if the 4 weeks before 1/7/2020 were unusual for the employee (for example, due to the lockdown restrictions being reintroduced in Victoria/New South Wales, or due to Border Restrictions impacting trade) Staff will need to be assessed in 2 categories, resulting in 4 groups;   Staff who are Recipients of JobKeeper Stage 1, and who are now getting JobKeeper Stage 2;Worked more than 20 hours per week in the 4 weeks before 1/3/2020 – must be paid by the participating business, the Wage Condition of at least $1,200 before tax per fortnight.*Worked less than 20 hours per week in the 4 weeks before 1/3/2020 – must be paid by the participating business, the Wage Condition of at least $650 before tax per fortnight.*   Staff who are new Recipients of JobKeeper Stage 2 (never got Stage 1)Worked more than 20 hours per week in the 4 weeks before 1/7/2020 – must be paid by the participating business, the Wage Condition of at least $1,200 before tax per fortnight.**Worked less than 20 hours per week in the 4 weeks before 1/7/2020 – must be paid by the participating business, the Wage Condition of at least $650 before tax per fortnight.**   *the ATO can set a different test if the 4 weeks before 1/3/2020 were unusual for the employee (for example, due to bushfires)   ** the ATO can set a different test if the 4 weeks before 1/7/2020 were unusual for the employee (for example, due to the lockdown restrictions being reintroduced in Victoria/New South Wales, or due to Border Restrictions impacting trade)
Payment from ATO: Monthly in arrears to the business Monthly in arrears to the business Monthly in arrears to the business
Reporting to the ATO: Monthly Monthly Monthly

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Download – JobKeeper Stage 1, 2 & 3 Quick Reference Guide

MORE INFORMATION

For more information see: https://treasury.gov.au/coronavirus/jobkeeper