The Bentleys Tax team is maintaining this list of COVID-19 measures, which have been announced by Australian federal, state and territory governments, for reference by Bentleys staff.

Last updated: 24 March 2020, 11.00am ACDT

Here we provide some direction on how you can help your clients access:

 

Cash payments (permanent)

Measure descriptionJurisdiction/providerEligibilityTimingHow do I get it?
$550 per fortnight special Coronavirus supplement for income support payments#Federal governmentExisting or new Job seeker, Youth allowance Jobseeker, parenting payment, farm allowance and special benefit. Asset testing will be waived. Waiting period waivedOver the next 6 monthsServices Australia is administering for eligible recipients
Two $750 one-off payments to social security and other income support recipientsFederal governmentIndividuals in receipt of eligible social security paymentsFrom 31 March 2020 and from 13 July 2020Automatic from government
$17.5k business grantWA governmentWA employers with Aust taxable wages $1m to $4mWA employers with Aust taxable wages $1m to $4mAutomatic from government but should check details WA payroll
Victoria payroll tax refundVictorian governmentEmployers with payroll of less than $3mFor payroll tax from 1 July 2020 to 30 June 2020Automatic from government. Payments expected from March 27
$20,000 - $100,000 cash payment or PAYG reduction for employers##Federal governmentBusiness with aggregated turnover less than $50m and employing staff and registered as employers prior to 12 March 2020Minimum $10,000 and maximum $50,000 paid on March – June BAS (calculated based on the amount of PAYG withholdings from 1 January to 30 June 2020). Additional payment of $10,000 -$50,000 in July to Oct 2020 period calculated based on the initial payment and spread over the periodCalculated by ATO on lodgement of BAS by completing relevant employment labels
Early access to superannuation ($20,000) tax-freeFederal governmentIndividuals who are:
1) unemployed
2) eligible for government payments, or
3) after 1 January 2020:
o made redundant;
o had hours reduced by 20% or more; or
o if a sole trader had a reduction in turnover of 20% or more
$10,000 can be accessed before 1 July 2020.
$10,000 can be accessed for 3 months from 1 July 2020
Apply from mid-April though the mvGov website: www.my.gov.au

# Further information can be found here: https://treasury.gov.au/sites/default/files/2020-03/Fact_sheet-Income_Support_for_Individuals.pdf 
## Further information can be found here: https://treasury.gov.au/sites/default/files/2020-03/Fact_sheet-Cash_flow_assistance_for_businesses_0.pdf

 

Cash payments (timing)

MeasureJurisdiction/providerEligibilityTimingHow do I get it?
12 mth Interest-free loans up to $250kQueensland governmentQueensland businesses by applicationImmediateApply to QLD government via email: contact_us@qrida.qld.gov.au
TAS 3-yr interest-free loansTasmanian government<$5m turnover for hospitality, seafood, export sectors, used for equipment purchase or restructuringImmediateBusiness Tasmania on 1800 440 026 or visit www.business.tas.gov.au/ coronavirus_information
PAYG Instalment refund for payments made year to dateAustralian Taxation OfficeBusinesses needing cashflow due to COVID impactsImmediateVariation to instalment to next BAS/ IAS# to withdrawn instalments from start of year
Change to GST reporting cycle from quarterly to monthly to access refundsAustralian Taxation OfficeAll businessesImmediateThrough online application form
Vic government supplier paymentsVictorian governmentBusinesses with outstanding government supplier paymentsAll payments made within 5 daysTBA
SME loan guarantee scheme. Up to $250k unsecured loansFederal government through lending institutions##Less than $50m turnover. Government will guarantee 3-year loan with no repayments for 6 monthsEarly April 2020 to 30 September 2020Through lenders

# The ATO information suggests these measures will not be applied automatically.  You will need to notify the ATO of the reasons for the variation when the form is lodged.  The ATO will not apply interest or penalties on the final tax liability which is higher due to the refunded instalments.
## The RBA is also providing lending support to financial institutions to reduce the cost of funding to SMEs.

 

Expense reductions (permanent)

Measure descriptionJurisdiction/providerEligibilityTimingHow do I get it?
50% credit for apprentices wagesMaximum $21,000 payment per apprentice<20 full-time employees and employing eligible apprenticeFrom April 2020Apply to an Australian Apprenticeship Support Provider from early -April 2020
Three month waiver of NSW payroll taxNSW governmentTotal Aust payroll <$10mImmediate to 30 June 2020Application to NSW revenue
Bring forward of NSW & WA payroll tax threshold increase to $1mNSW and WA governmentAll businessesFrom 1 July 2020Automatic on payroll tax returns
Govt fee waiversNSW governmentEligible small businessesTBATBA
Govt fee waiversQLD governmentEligible businesses including fishery and hospitalityImmediateDetails at QLD fee waivers #
Govt fee waiversTAS governmentTourism, hospitality, fisheriesImmediateDetails at Tas govt fees ##
Govt fee waiversVic governmentLiquor licencing fees for affected venues and small business2020 feesVic Revenue to reimburse eligible business
Govt fee increase freezingNT governmentAll fee payersImmediate until 1 July 2021Automatic from govt
Household fee increase freezingWA governmentAll WA householdsImmediate until 1 July 2021Automatic from govt
TAS Payroll tax waiverTAS governmentHospitality, seafood, tourism. Other businesses with payroll up to $5m by applicationFour month waiver till 30 June 2020Application to TAS govt
NT business improvement grant $10,000 or $20,000 (with owner $10,000 contribution)NT governmentMust be used for undertaking improvements to an NT business purchased from an eligible NT business (not solar or PV installation)Application from 30 March 2020. Eligible businesses listed from 13 April 2020Application to NT govt: business.nt.gov.au/recovery
NT home improvement grant ($6,000 voucher for $2,000 contribution or $4,000 voucher for a $1,000 contribution)NT governmentUsed for home improvement or repairs by local business registered for the scheme. One home per person onlyBusinesses from 30 March, households from 6 April. Voucher eligible for 3 monthsApplication to NT govt: business.nt.gov.au/recovery
NT $50,000 matched grantNT governmentcommunity organisation for premises/ facility upgradeImmediateApplication to NT govt
ACT rates rebateACT governmentResidential property owners ($150 rebate) and commercial properties AUV <$2m (fixed charge $2.6k rebated)ImmediateAutomatic from government
ACT payroll tax waiverACT governmentHospitality, creative arts and entertainmentImmediate for 6 monthsOnline form www.revenue.act.gov.au
ACT registration fee waiverACT governmentFood business registration, liquor licencing, taxi/ ride share feesApril 2020 for 12 monthsAutomatic from government

# Queensland Government: https://www.qld.gov.au/about/industry-recovery/business-and-industry-support
## Tasmanian Government : http://www.premier.tas.gov.au/documents/FACT_SHEETS_-_STIMULUS_PACKAGES_Final-V2.0.pdf

 

Expense reductions (timing)

MeasureJurisdiction/providerEligibilityTimingHow do I get it?
QLD payroll tax deferralQLD government<$6.5m Aust taxable wages and impacted by COVIDImmediate until 31 July 2020Application to QLD govt payroll tax relief#
WA payroll tax deferralWA government<$7.5 Aust taxable wages and impacted by COVID-19Immediate until 21 July 2020Application to WA govt payroll tax relief##
Deferral of Vic payroll taxVictorian government~Businesses with payroll less than $3mBusinesses can defer Jul-Sept payroll tax to 1 January 2021TBA
PAYG Instalment refund for payments made year to dateAustralian Taxation OfficeBusinesses needing cashflow due to COVID impactsImmediateVariation to instalment to next BAS/ IAS ~~
Deferral of due dates for post 23 Jan tax payments by up to 6 monthsAustralian Taxation OfficeBusinesses needing cashflow due to COVID-19 impactsImmediateContact ATO 1800 806 218
Remission of interest & penalties for pre-23 Jan tax debtsAustralian Taxation OfficeBusinesses needing cashflow due to COVID-19 impactsImmediateContact ATO 1800 806 218
Rent reliefLandlordsBy negotiation. Vic govt landlord has announced a schemeImmediateContact landlord
Bank repayment deferralsFinancial institutionMost banks have announced deferral of repayments and other measuresImmediateContact financial institution
ACT payroll tax deferral interest-freeACT governmentBusinesses less than $10m in payrollFrom 1 July 2020 until 1 July 2022Online form www.revenue.act.gov.au
Vic land tax deferralVic governmentNon-residential landowners with less than $1m in taxable holdings2020 land tax payment deferred until after 1 Jan 2021 and can be paid by 31 March 2021Automatic administration by Vic Revenue

# Queensland Government: https://www.business.qld.gov.au/running-business/employing/payroll-tax/lodging/coronavirus-tax-relief 
## WA Government: https://www.wa.gov.au/government/publications/application-defer-payroll-tax-covid-19
~ Victorian government: https://www.premier.vic.gov.au/economic-survival-package-to-support-businesses-and-jobs/
~~ The ATO information suggests these measures will not be applied automatically.  You will need to notify the ATO of the reasons for the variation when the form is lodged. The ATO will not apply interest or penalties on the final tax liability which is higher due to the reduced instalments.

 

Other concessions

MeasureJurisdiction/providerEligibilityTimingHow do I get it?
Increase to instant asset write-off deduction to $150k Federal governmentDepreciating asset purchases less than $150k (note car limit for car purchases) where entity has aggregated turnover less than $500mAcquired after 12 March and Installed and ready for use before 30 June 2020Acquire eligible asset
Write-off of 50% cost of eligible new assetsFederal governmentDepreciating asset purchases) where entity has aggregated turnover less than $500mAcquired after 12 March and Installed and ready for use before 30 June 2021Acquire eligible asset
$1b support packageFederal governmentTBATBATBA
$1b public works packageNSW governmentTBATBATBA
$27m tourism/seafood packageQueensland governmentTBATBATBA
$350m infrastructure fundSA governmentEligible projectsImmediateSA government by application
$500 business support fundVic governmentImpacted sectorsTBATBA
$500 worker support fundVic governmentAssist impacted employees find new opportunitiesTBATBA
Temporary reduction in minimum super draw-downFederal governmentSuperfunds with account-based pensions. Minimum pension reduced by 50%For 2020 and 2021 financial year pension paymentsSuper administration
Reduction in social security deemingFederal governmentAged pensioners1 May 2020Government administration
Exemption from responsible lendingFederal governmentSmall business customersImmediate for 6 monthsBusiness practice

 

Useful resources

The information above is a short summary of announced measures which have not been legislated. Each measure has its own unique requirements, which are not listed in detail here. You should review each particular measure and the enabling legislation before advising your client of the impacts for these particular circumstances. Further, this document has not been through a detailed review process and may contain errors or inconsistencies which may impact your client outcomes if relied on.

COVID-19: Bentleys' insights hub

COVID-19: Bentleys' preparedness