COVID-19 Update & Resource Page

Business.gov.au resources

Support Line 13 28 46

The support line has been expanded to provide specialist advisers and extended hours to support small and medium businesses impacted by the COVID-19 pandemic. You can also send an email.

The Hotline operates seven days per week, and provide an additional two hours a day of support outside standard operating hours for the first month, answering calls from 7.00am to 11.00pm AEST.

During these challenging times businesses that have been impacted by COVID-19 need readily available access to advice so they can fully understand the assistance available to them and their employees.

Australian Tax Office Resources

General Information

The ATO has set up an Emergency Support Infoline - 1800 806 218. The Infoline provides tailored advice to support small business who may be having difficulties meeting their tax and super obligations.

Small businesses can contact the ATO to defer some payments and vary instalments that are due. These include income tax, activity statement, pay as you go (PAYG) instalments, FBT and excise payments by up to six months.

Sole traders and self-employed Australians who are PAYG instalments payers, may vary their PAYG instalments on their activity statement. They may do this by lodging a revised activity statement before the instalment is due and before the tax return for the year is lodged. Sole traders and self-employed Australians who vary their PAYG instalment rate or amount can also claim a refund for any instalments made during the 2019–20 financial year.

Where PAYG instalments are varied, the ATO won't apply penalties or charge interest to varied instalments for the 2019–20 financial year and if a mistake is made in working out the PAYG instalment, the sole trader and self-employed Australian may correct it by lodging a revised activity statement or varying a subsequent instalment.

Click for more info on COVID-19 ATO Support

Government Statements

All PM Media Announcements

COVID-19 Apps

COVIDSafe App

The Australian Government has launched the COVIDSafe app to help keep Australians safe from further spread of coronavirus through early notification of possible exposure. While COVIDSafe app use is voluntary, all Australians are encouraged to download the app to help effectively protect Australians and ensure quick response to any new cases of COVID-19.

Events

ASBAS Digital Solutions Biz Booster webinar series (FREE)

Zoom S

As part of the ASBAS commitment to supporting small business during these difficult economic times, we are continuing with our free Interactive C19 Biz Booster Webinar series providing general as well as digital business advice from our top advisors – see all the upcoming topics here.

COVID-19 surveys

COVID-19 business resilience survey

The ED Toolbox has created an online COVID-19 business resilience survey.

The survey, which is anonymous and takes 3-5 minutes to complete, will measure the coronavirus impacts on small to medium businesses and not-for-profit organisations in Australia.

Survey results are progressively added, and can be viewed here.

Australian Government resources for business

JobKeeper Payment

General Information

Enrolments are open from now until the end of May for the JobKeeper Payment through the ATO online services.

If you have employees, you will need to ask them to complete a JobKeeper employee nomination notice and return it to you by the end of April if you plan to claim JobKeeper payments for April. Continue to pay at least $1,500 to each eligible employee per JobKeeper fortnight (the first JobKeeper fortnight is the period from 30 March to 12 April) - see ATO website for details.

See also the latest Update to JobKeeper Rules as announced by the Federal Treasurer.

For help with the JobKeeper payment, the Small Business Association of Australia has posted easy to follow step-by-step JobKeeper Guides:

Bridging Finance

On 23 April 2020, the Treasurer announced the CBA, NAB, Westpac and ANZ banks agreed to establish dedicated hotlines for their customers to call to receive the bridging finance necessary to pay their staff ahead of receiving the JobKeeper Payment.

The hotlines are as follows:

  • CBA: 13 26 07
  • ANZ: 1800 571 123
  • NAB: 1800 JOBKEEPER
  • Westpac: 1300 731 073
  • St George: 1300 730 196
  • Bank of Melbourne: 1300 784 873
  • Bank SA: 1300 669 472

The banks have also agreed to bring to the front of the queue all bridging finance applications. This means any business that is eligible for the JobKeeper Payment can now ring the dedicated hotline for the bank and ask for the bridging finance necessary to pay their staff.

New eligibility requirements for employees that are 16 and 17 years old

Employees that are 16 and 17 years old who identified as eligible under the original eligibility criteria for the first three JobKeeper fortnights (from 30 March until 10 May 2020), may no longer be eligible employees under the JobKeeper wages subsidy scheme from the JobKeeper fortnight 4 commencing 11 May.

This means that full-time students are no longer eligible employees, unless (as of 1 March 2020) they are also independent, from JobKeeper fortnight 4. However, employers can still claim for those 16 and 17 year olds who had already identified as eligible employees for JobKeeper fortnights 1 to 3 from 30 March up until 10 May 2020.

What employers need to do

Employers will need to provide their 16 and 17 year old employees with the new JobKeeper Employee nomination notice and have them complete and return it as soon as possible to confirm if they meet the new eligibility criteria and that they agree to be nominated for JobKeeper fortnight 4 commencing on 11 May.

If your 16 and 17 year old employees are no longer eligible, you will no longer be able to identify them as an eligible employee from JobKeeper fortnight 4 which commences 11 May.

Where to go for more information

Download the JobKeeper employee nomination notice

If you create your own employee nomination notice make sure it contains the new eligibility requirements for 16 and 17 year olds

Visit www.ato.gov.au/general/JobKeeper-Payment

Alternative tests for JobKeeper payments from Australian Tax Commissioner

Businesses who only opened recently or were affected by other events or circumstances in the past, including selling or restructuring the business, or were affected by drought or other natural disasters can now do an Alternative Decline in Turnover Test so they are not disadvantaged in demonstrating the 30% reduction in turnover criterion for the JobKeeper payment.

More information can be found here.

Payroll tax exemption on JobKeeper Payments

Administrative arrangements have been fast-tracked to ensure payroll tax assessments do not include JobKeeper payments, providing additional effective relief of $360 million over six months to Queensland-employing businesses.

Details in the Premier’s media statement

Other / Government resources

COVID-19 modelling

The Australian Government has released modelling of how COVID-19 could spread through the Australian population under different scenarios. This modelling helps governments take action to slow the spread of COVID-19 and prepare our health system.

Brisbane City Council Resources

Support for Business

Support for exporters & investors

Austrade assistance for exporters & Investors

Support for exporters

The coronavirus epidemic is placing huge strains on vital trade and investment activity. To help international investors, Austrade has launched a new COVID-19 update site that highlights the latest investment-related news – including stimulus packages – and explains regulatory changes.

Information for not-for-profits

Industry Planning and Preparedness

Industry Planning and Preparedness (Community Services Industry Association Qld)

Queensland Government Resources

Queensland Health advice on COVID-19

Support & resources for individuals & households

Early Childhood Education & Care Relief Package