Last night Parliament passed the legislation to enable the JobKeeper Payment scheme which is intended to deliver income support of $1,500 per fortnight to eligible employees of COVID-19 affected businesses.
Under this legislation, the Government has created a “framework” under which the Treasurer will be required to make rules to provide for the payments, including eligibility for payments, the amount of payments and the time that payments will be made.
Under the legislation, the Commissioner of Taxation (ATO) has been granted the powers to administer the JobKeeper Payments. We understand that Deputy Commissioner James O’Halloran has been appointed to lead the department to be formed within the ATO to administer the scheme.
An exposure draft of the rules were initially published on the Treasury website last night but have since been pulled down.
We welcome the passing of the JobKeeper Payment legislation as an important step forwards in delivering much needed support to those affected by COVID-19.
However, we must continue to patiently wait for the vital detail needed to understand the scheme and its application, in the form of the rules to be set by the Treasurer.
We are optimistic that these rules will be available very soon.
Additionally and importantly, we await guidance on when the formal application process will open.
Meanwhile, Treasury have updated their website and fact sheets earlier this week with further information and examples on how the Government intends the scheme will operate.
We realise that many businesses and their employees are very anxious to commence accessing the JobKeeper Payment scheme. Unfortunately, there is still some way to go and those businesses and employees will continue to exist in a state of limbo.
We hope to be able to provide further guidance on the JobKeeper Payment scheme very soon. In the meantime, please do not hesitate to contact us if you require information specific to your circumstances.
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