As always, the ATO is keeping us on our toes and changing their minds more frequently than they change their undies!
So, here's what changed in the last few days:
1. There have been some pretty dramatic changes to JobKeeper rules with one of the biggest highlights being 16 and 17-year-olds now ineligible if they are a full-time student and not financially independent. Yes, sure let's go back and amend all that work we did last week... Got nothing better to do with our time right?! Not-withstanding the delayed clarification/change, we actually don't disagree with this one.
2. The alternative test has been released by the Commissioner now, so if you didn't quite meet the eligibility criteria in the first instance, now is the time to re-look. Give us a yell if you need a hand with it.
3. They (the ATO) decided that they won't keep anyone's Cashflow Boost stimulus money anymore even if you've got an ATO debt regardless of when you lodge your BAS. They will now refund the lot after crediting your current BAS, so no need to wait, lodge away.
4. JobKeeper is now 'one in all in' which is a relief to many employees who had been struggling to deal with a difficult boss who perhaps wasn't doing the right thing. This means, that business owners cannot pick and choose which employees can participate in the scheme. The fact that this is even happening really annoys me, I understand there are funding challenges but honestly, there is no need to be playing games with people livelihoods.
5. Oh, and the ATO have kindly just extended the deadline for the third time for JobKeeper due date from 30th April, now to the end of May even for April payments which is a big turnaround to their original rules. So, they gave my all this grey hair for absolutely no reason, all my staff didn't actually need to work a billion hours last week and we could have taken our sweet arse time all along. Isn't hindsight a wonderful thing.
6. Finally, there is a special COVID bank hotline now up and running for businesses who need help bridging the gap between the payroll payments they need to make and the when the first JobKeeper payments are made. JobKeeper application are now also at the front of the queue with accelerated assessments taking place. Seriously, I also can't believe that wasn't happening before. Hopefully, this helps to alleviate some of the frustrations everyone is experiencing.
As always, please contact us if you need a hand with anything.
Disclaimer | All this information is provided by the ATO and we promise we aren’t pulling it out of thin air! Yes, we know it seems ridiculous, we just couldn’t make this shit up. We are just the messenger people, trying to help keep you informed and up to date when the information comes to hand.