ATO: Check the answers to our most commonly asked questions about COVID-19

(Australian Taxation Office)
28 May 2020

 

We are experiencing a high numbers of calls, resulting in long wait times.

To save time, check the answers to our most commonly asked questions about JobKeeper, early release of super and cash flow boost.

We are working hard to help people understand and access the government’s COVID-19 economic assistance measures.

If you make a genuine mistake we will help you resolve it.

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JobKeeper

What do I need to do to receive JobKeeper payments?

You need to identify your eligible employees through your STP enabled software (step 2) by 31 May (6pm EST).

For further information visit ato.gov.au/jobkeeperguides or contact your registered tax or BAS agent if they helped you enrol.

When do I need to complete the monthly declaration?

If you have already completed Step 2, you need to make a business monthly declaration from 1 June to reconfirm that you want to keep participating in the JobKeeper program.

When will I receive the payment?

On average most payments issue within five business days from when your submit your application form (when you identify and maintain your employees). However, it may take longer if there are additional checks required or any errors made on your form.

My employer has asked me to work more hours, do I need to?

At least $1,500 (before tax) a fortnight must be paid to eligible employees, this amount does not change based on the amount of hours you work. You need to contact the Fair Work Ombudsman to discuss conditions relating specifically to your employment.

Early release of super

I am not an Australian citizen, am I eligible for an early release of my super due to COVID-19?

If you’re a temporary resident, you may be able to apply this financial year (before 30 June) only, if you are in one of the following circumstances:

  • You hold a student visa that you have held for 12 months or more and you are unable to meet immediate living expenses.
  • You are a temporary skilled work visa holder and still employed but unable to meet immediate living expenses.
  • You are a temporary resident visa holder (excluding student or skilled worker visas) and you cannot meet immediate living expenses.

Eligible Australian and New Zealand citizens and permanent residents can apply to access up to:

  • $10,000 of super until 30 June 2020
  • a further $10,000 from 1 July 2020 until 24 September 2020.

How do I apply for a second early release of super payment?

You will need to lodge a new application next financial year to receive a second COVID-19 early release of super payment of up to $10,000. Applications will open on 1 July 2020 and close on 24 September 2020.

When will I receive the early access payment from my super fund?

If your early access to super due to COVID-19 has been approved, your super fund should make the payment to you within the next 5 working days, unless they need to undertake further checks. For more information see our COVID-19 early release of super page.

Why is my super balance on myGov less than I thought?

myGov displays the latest information that your super fund transmitted to us, so it is as at 30 June 2019 for most funds. Refer to your most recent Super statement or contact your super fund for more recent figures.

Can I access ATO-held super?

ATO-held super cannot be accessed through the early release of super program.

Cash flow boost

Am I eligible to receive the cash flow boost?

There is a list of eligibility criteria you will need to meet to get the cash flow boost. For more information see Eligibility.

When will I receive my cash flow boost?

The cash flow boost is not a cash payment. If you are eligible, the cash flow boost will be applied as a credit when you lodge your March 2020 monthly or quarterly activity statement. The credit is used to reduce your liabilities (for example, PAYG(W) and GST payable) from the activity statement. If your liabilities are less than the cash flow boost, the remaining credit is refunded to you within 14 days.

I thought I was getting a $10,000 cash boost but I received less

The cash flow boost is not a cash payment. If you are eligible, a minimum of $10,000 will be applied as a credit when you lodge your March 2020 monthly or quarterly activity statement.

How it works:

The credit is used to reduce your liabilities (for example, PAYG(W) and GST payable) from the activity statement.

If your liabilities are less than the cash flow boost, the remaining credit is refunded to you.

Excess credits will not be offset against other existing tax debts.

For more information you can visit our Boosting cash flow for employers page.

My question is not here

If your question is not answered here, you can also visit ATO CommunityExternal Link, which is available 24/7 with questions, answers and regular updates.

Questions updated on 28 May 2020 based on available call data.

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