As you may be aware, Scomo’s government has announced a stimulus package to assist with those who are affected by the outbreak of the COVID-19. We are writing this blog article to help you better understand how the package will benefit you and your household.
Please note that the Package has not been legislated for all sections. Both the ATO and your Accountant are waiting for more detailed instructions, restrictions and procedures. They will keep us updated on any changes of which we will immediately relay to you.
Benefits to Individuals and Households
The table below summarises the type of benefits and the eligibility in general.
If you are receiving any government income support, you would receive at least one type of benefit listed in the table below.
Type (a), (b) and (c) will be assessed and paid automatically by Centrelink or other income support payers.
Please contact your service providers if the expected payment was not made on time. Please be advised the process can take a few weeks from the commencement date due to the volume of recipients involved.
Type (d) requires manual application via myGov online if you are eligible.
Please refer to the Table of Eligibility attached for eligibility by each income support payment type that best matches your situation.
|Recipient Category/Benefit Category||(a) 1st once-off payment of $750||(b) 2nd once-off payment of $750||(c) Coronavirus Supplement fortnightly payments of $550||(d) Early access to $10,000 super withdrawal|
|Brief notes:||Automatic assessment and payment from 31 March 2020.
No application required.
Must be residing in Australia.
|Automatic assessment and payment from 13 July 2020.
No application required.
Must be residing in Australia and eligible for Type (a).
|Commence from 27 April 2020.
No application required.
|Tax-free withdrawal from super account before retirement age.
Need to apply via myGov www.my.gov.au.
Available for application from mid-April 2020.
|(i) After 1 Jan 2020: unemployed, made redundant, or working hours were reduced by 20% or more.||Please check your eligibility with Centrelink if you are eligible to receive any income support in Category (iii), and apply for it if you can to access to other benefits.||Yes|
|(ii) Sole trader whose business was suspended or turnover reduced by 20% or more.||Please check your eligibility with Centrelink if you are eligible to receive any income support in Category (iii), and apply for it if you can to access to other benefits.||Yes|
|(iii) Receiving JobSeeker Payment, Youth Allowance Jobseeker Parenting Payment, Farm Household Allowance and Special Benefit||Yes||No||Yes||Yes|
|(iv) All other income support recipients||Yes||Yes||No||No|
Outlined below is a summary of some of the key measures announced.
Access to super savings
Access to your own superannuation savings will be broadened where you’re in financial distress because of the Coronavirus and meet certain eligibility conditions.
If you’re eligible you’ll be able to access up to $10,000 before June 30 2020 and an additional $10,000 from July 1 2020.
To be eligible, you must meet ONE of the following conditions:
- you’re unemployed
- you’re eligible to receive Jobseeker Payment, Youth Allowance, Parenting Payments
- on or after 1 January 2020, you were made redundant, your hours of work reduced by at least 20%, or if you’re a sole trader, your business was suspended or your turnover reduced by at least 20%.
Applications will be through MyGov and you’ll need to certify that you meet one of the above eligibility requirements. Once the ATO confirms you’re eligible, they will issue you and your super fund with a determination and the payment will be made to you. If you have a SMSF, arrangements will differ.
Payments will be tax-free and amounts received will not impact Centrelink entitlements.
It is expected that claims can be made from mid-April 2020.
Small business loans – relief package
Australian Banks will provide support to eligible small businesses by deferring loan payments for up to six months, where assistance is required as a result of COVID-19.
Coronavirus Guarantee Scheme
This scheme will provide a Government guarantee of 50% of the value of new loans issued by eligible lenders to small and medium sized businesses. This will encourage an increased access to loans by businesses.
Additional lump sum payments to employers
Small and medium sized businesses and not-for-profit organisations that employ people will receive a payment of between $20,000 and $100,000 to assist with operating expenses.
Instant asset write-off
From 12 March 2020, the instant write-off threshold will increase from $30,000 to $150,000, available to businesses with an annual turnover of up to $500 million for the current financial year. This applies to new or second-hand assets used or installed ready for use by 30 June 2020. This new threshold will apply on a per asset basis until 30 June 2020.
Accelerated depreciation of 50% will apply to eligible assets until 30 June 2021, for the assets that are used or installed ready for use by 30 June 2020.
Employers with apprentices and trainees
Eligible employers (< 20 employees) who employ apprentices or trainees can apply for a subsidy of 50% of the employee’s wage. This applies for the period of 1 January to 30 September 2020. The maximum payment of $21,000 per apprentice or trainee.
Eligible employers can register for the subsidy from early April 2020 and final claims for payments lodged by 31 December 2020.
$750 cash payments
Two payments of $750 each will be paid to eligible income support recipients and concession card holders. The first tax-free payment will be available to eligible income support recipients as at 12 March 2020 and is expected to be automatically paid to eligible recipients from 31 March 2020. The second payment will be available to those who aren’t eligible for the Coronavirus supplement (see below) and will be automatically paid from 13 July 2020.
This supplement of $550 per fortnight will be paid to new and existing recipients of:
- Jobseeker Payment
- Youth Allowance
- Parenting Payment
The supplement will be paid over the next six months and will be paid automatically with the person’s ordinary fortnightly entitlement. It will be paid from 27 April.
As always, we will keep you all updated as news comes to hand – stay safe and stay healthy.