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Increasing the Instant Asset Write Off


The Government is increasing the instant asset write-off threshold from $30,000 to $150,000 and expanding access to include businesses with aggregated annual turnover of less than $500 million (up from $50 million) until 30 June 2020. In 2017-18 there were more than 360,000 businesses that benefited from the current instant asset write-off, claiming deductions to the value of over $4 billion. This measure will support over 3.5 million businesses (over 99 per cent of businesses) employing more than 9.7 million employees. 

Fact Sheet - Delivery Support for Business Investment.pdf

Supporting Apprentices and Trainees

The Government is supporting small business to retain their apprentices and trainees. Eligible employers can apply for a wage subsidy of 50 per cent of the apprentice's or trainee's wage for 9 months from 1 January 2020 to 30 September 2020. Where a small business is not able to retain an apprentice, the subsidy will be available to a new employer that employs that apprentice. Employers will be reimbursed up to a maximum of $21,000 per eligible apprentice or trainee ($7,000 per quarter).

Support will also be provided to the National Apprentice Employment Network, the peak national body representing Group Training Organisations, to co-ordinate the re-employment of displaced apprentices and trainees throughout their network of host employers across Australia.

This measure will support up to 70,000 small businesses, employing around 117,000 apprentices.

Boosting Cashflow for Employees

The Government is enhancing the Boosting Cash Flow for Employers measure it announced on 12 March 2020. The Government is providing up to $100,000 to eligible small and medium-sized businesses, and not for-profits (NFPs) that employ people, with a minimum payment of $20,000. These payments will help businesses and NFPs with their cash flow so they can keep operating, pay their rent, electricity and other bills and retain staff.

This measure will benefit around 690,000 businesses employing around 7.8 million people, and around 30,000 NFPs (including charities).

Small and medium-sized business entities with aggregated annual turnover under $50 million and that employ workers are eligible. NFPs, including charities, with aggregated annual turnover under $50 million and that employ workers will now also be eligible. This will support employment at a time where NFPs are facing increasing demand for services.

Under the enhanced scheme, employers will receive a payment equal to 100 per cent of their salary and wages withheld (up from 50 per cent), with the maximum payment being increased from $25,000 to $50,000. In addition, the minimum payment is being increased from $2,000 to $10,000.

An additional payment is also being introduced in the July – October 2020 period. Eligible entities will receive an additional payment equal to the total of all of the Boosting Cash Flow for Employers payments they have received. This means that eligible entities will receive at least $20,000 up to a total of $100,000 under both payments.

Fact Sheet - Cashflow Assistance for Businesses.pdf

Reducing Social Security Deeming Rates

On 12 March, the Government announced a 0.5 percentage point reduction in both the upper and lower social security deeming rates. The Government will now reduce these rates by another 0.25 percentage points.

As of 1 May 2020, the upper deeming rate will be 2.25 per cent and the lower deeming rate will be 0.25 per cent. The reductions reflect the low interest rate environment and its impact on the income from savings. 

The change will benefit around 900,000 income support recipients, including around 565,000 Age Pensioners who will, on average receive around $105 more of the Age Pension in the first full year the reduced rates apply.

Fact Sheet - Support for Retirees.pdf

Reduction in superannuation drawdown rates


The Government is temporarily reducing superannuation minimum draw down requirements for account-based pensions and similar products by 50 per cent for 2019-20 and 2020-21. 

This measure will benefit retirees holding these products by reducing the need to sell investment assets to fund minimum draw down requirements.

Fact Sheet - Support for Retirees.pdf

Temporary early release of superannuation


The Government is allowing individuals affected by the Coronavirus to access up to $10,000 of their superannuation in 2019-20 and a further $10,000 in 2020-21. 

Individuals will not need to pay tax on amounts released and the money they withdraw will not affect Centrelink or Veterans' Affairs payments.

Fact Sheet - Early access to superannuation.pdf

Payments to Support Households

The Government is providing two separate $750 payments to social security, veteran and other income support recipients and eligible concession card holders. 

The first payment will be made from 31 March 2020 and the second payment will be made from 13 July 2020. Around half of those that benefit are pensioners. 

This payment will help to support confidence and domestic demand in the economy. The second payment will not be made to those eligible for the Coronavirus supplement.

Fact Sheet - Payments to support households.pdf

Income Support for Individuals

Over the next six months, the Government is temporarily expanding eligibility to income support payments and establishing a new, time-limited Coronavirus supplement to be paid at a rate of $550 per fortnight. This will be paid to both existing and new recipients of JobSeeker Payment, Youth Allowance Jobseeker, Parenting Payment, Farm Household Allowance and Special Benefit. 

Fact Sheet - Income Support for Individuals.pdf

Over the next six months, the Government is temporarily expanding eligibility to income support payments and establishing a new, time-limited Coronavirus supplement to be paid at a rate of $550 per fortnight. 

This will be paid to both existing and new recipients of JobSeeker Payment, Youth Allowance Jobseeker, Parenting Payment, Farm Household Allowance and Special Benefit. 

Single Touch Payroll (STP)

From 1 July 2019, every time you pay your employees you'll need to report the following through STP;

  • Wages & salaries
  • PAYG withholding
  • Superannuation expense

STP will be available through the latest versions of MYOB and Xero.  If you are not using either of these accounting software, you can use a third party provider for reporting. 

 

Employers with closely held payees:

A closely held payee means the payee is directly related to the entity from which they receive payments, for example:

  • family members of a family-owned business
  • directors or shareholders of a company
  • trustees or beneficiaries of a trust. 

Employers may not always pay closely held payees a regular salary or wage. Instead, they may draw on income from the business throughout the year. As STP information is reported each time payroll is run, employers will not be able to report their closely held payees this way.

If you are an employer with closely held payees, there are flexible reporting options available to you.


Small Employers (Micro) 1-4 employees:

ATO has approached software companies to develop no or low cost solutions if you are not using an accounting package enabled with STP reporting.  Please see the link below for access to these solutions:

https://www.ato.gov.au/business/single-touch-payroll/in-detail/low-cost-single-touch-payroll-solutions/?=redirected_STPsolutions

You will also have the option to report STP through your Quarterly BAS if you lodge through us, rather than each time you run payroll.  This option will be available until 30 June 2021.

 

Employers with 5-19 employees (small employers):

STP can be reported either through your payroll software, or the above link of third party providers.  Your business must be reporting through a STP option by 30 September 2019.

 

Employers with 20 or more employees:

The category of employer should already be reporting, or have a deferral in place.


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