Jobkeeper – FAQ

A man on his back, looking confused and scratching his head, with question mark symbols floating above him, perhaps reflecting his need for the expertise and guidance of small business accountants.

If you’re based in Sydney and your business is claiming Jobkeeper, or you’re considering making a claim, we would like to share some practical questions we’ve been asked as we enter the second claim month. So, read on for helpful insights from accountants in Sydney.

Question Answer or comments
Will Jobkeeper payment be subjected to Payroll tax? This varies depending on the State. The current status is as follows:

·         ACT – completely exempt

·         NSW – no announcement at the time of writing this article

·         NT – no announcement at the time of writing this article

·         QLD – completely exempt

·         SA – completely exempt

·         TAS – completely exempt

·         WA – completely exempt

·         VIC – only the additional wage paid to the $1500 threshold each fortnight will be exempted

Will Jobkeeper payment be included as wage for Workers’ compensation insurance (WCI) calculation? The State Insurance Regulatory Authority has advised that not all Jobkeeper payments will be subjected to WCI. Employers are only required to pay WCI and declare the wages on the hours worked. This applies to all States and Territories.

I missed the April Payroll payment deadline – what should the employer do? If you have missed paying some staff the minimum $1500 in the month of April, it will not bar you from future month’s claims.

Also, the Commissioner is given the power and discretion to allocate the payment from one fortnight to another fortnight, so it may be worthwhile to ask the Commissioner to grant you this discretion if you have a reasonable reason for missing the payment.

Our business’s pay cycle does not match the Jobkeeper fortnightly period. How do we process the payroll and still be eligible? Your payroll cycle is not relevant for the purpose of claiming Jobkeeper. You must ensure that each eligible employee is paid a minimum of $1500 gross wage within the relevant Jobkeeper fortnight. See this link for the relevant Jobkeeper fortnight

For employers with monthly pay cycles, the employees must receive the monthly equivalent of $1500 per fortnight (except the month of August, where there are 3 fortnights, so the monthly minimum equivalent for this month will be $4,500).

Do I have to lodge all outstanding tax returns or BAS to get Jobkeeper? The ATO is required to reimburse the employer no later than either of these dates:

1.       14 days after the end of the relevant claim month;

2.       14 days after the Commissioner is satisfied that the requirements of Jobkeeper have been satisfied.

Therefore, due to the second criterion, we encourage all businesses to get all outstanding BAS or tax returns lodged as soon as possible to avoid further delay on the Jobkeeper payment.

I have claimed Jobkeeper as an “eligible business participant” –can I still work and get paid a wage by another employer or business? Under the “Eligible business participant” nomination form, there is a requirement that you, as the nominated individual, cannot be employed by another employer on a full-time or part-time basis. However, casual work may be acceptable here.
Does my business have to use Single Touch Payroll (STP) software to submit the payroll report to the ATO to qualify for Jobkeeper? STP is not compulsory for Jobkeeper claims, but it will make the administration task of preparing and uploading the monthly Jobkeeper claim form much more manageable.

If you have a lot of staff to report and claim each month, then we highly recommend having STP-enabled software.

What payroll records do you need to keep for Jobkeeper? Below is a list of information or records we recommend that you should keep for your Jobkeeper claims:

1. Work paper or calculation on the projected turnover for the initial enrolment – including the GST method used.

2.       Workpaper or calculation of actual turnover each month

3.       All employees’ nomination forms

4.       The eligible business participant nomination form

5.       Employees list – eligible and non-eligible (reasons)

6.       Regular Payroll calculation and reports (payslips and EFT/bank payment confirmation)

If you have any questions, don’t hesitate to contact your client manager.

Kreston Stanley Williamson Team

*Correct as of May 2020

*Disclaimer – this article has been produced by Kreston Stanley Williamson as a service to its clients and associates. The information contained in the article is of general comment only and is not intended to be advice on any particular matter. Before acting on any areas in this article, you must seek specific advice relating to your particular circumstances. Liability is limited by a scheme approved under professional standards legislation.

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