The trap with Jobmaker is you must be registered before the end of the first employment period, which is 6th January 2021 in order to qualify for the payment in relation to new wages you have paid after 6th October 2020 and before 6th January 2021. You don’t actually have to make the claim for the payment until as late as 30th April 2021. It is just a race to register in time.
In another example of the ATO running interference to the government’s intentions, in providing a stimulus package. The ATO has set traps that small businesses, without full-time Accountants, devoted to working through the detail for their particular circumstances, will fall into. There is plenty of material on the ATO web site stating that you have until the 30th April 2021 to claim for wages paid in the first claim period, which is 7th October 2020 to 6th January 2021. But way at the back of all this it says you must be registered before the end of the claim period i.e. 6th January 2021. Yet registrations did not open until 6th December 2020. So, the registration period covers a period where most Accountants are closed for 2 to 3 weeks and businesses have an extra month’s extension to lodge their BAS, generally they are not even looking to talk to their Accountant until the end of January. The profession thought that just like the case with silly Jobkeeper deadlines, the ATO would see reason and allow an extension for the first registration period. Well, they have not! You have until Wednesday to be registered!
Fortunately, the Ombudsman is onto these silly little tricks so don’t give up hope if you miss the deadline. Apply anyway. If you are rejected, object, if this is unsuccessful lodge a complaint with the ATO. It is at the complaint level you can expect a result, based on our experience with the Jobkeeper debacle. If you don’t succeed at complaint level the Ombudsman will take up your case. Of course, all this is best avoided by simply meeting the deadline. You can see how the ATO trap will work so well because of the amount of effort involved in trying to get the payment. As Jobmaker is paid in arrears, the workers would already have been employed, it is just that the employers will end up wearing a financial burden they may not recover from and as a result, all jobs with that business will be lost. Consider that over 80,000 businesses to date have successfully challenged the ATO’s attempts to deny them Jobkeeper or the Cash Flow Bonus.
If you have, since 6th October 2020, employed anyone who may qualify for Jobmaker you need to just register now. It is not a claim, you can get more information later on and decide whether or not to claim. The point is that you register. This is done through the ATO Mygov portal. If you have problems the ATO can be contacted on 132866 from 8am Monday 4th January 2021, keep a diary of your calls.
Now to some more detail about JobMaker:
Employees that qualify –
Employees need to be between 16 and 35 years of age (inclusive) at the time they are employed. Those between 30 and 35 will receive a lesser hiring credit. The employee must have been on jobseeker, youth allowance or parenting payment for at least 28 days within the 84 days before being hired. Employees can still meet this requirement even if they didn’t receive any cash during the period simply because they were subject to a waiting period or had earned enough income not to receive a payment in that time. Note, if the youth allowance recipient received the allowance because they were in an apprenticeship or undertaking full-time study then they will not qualify for Jobmaker.
It does not matter whether they are part-time, full time or casual, just as long as they work at least 20 hours per week.
Must be Additional Employees –
There needs to be an increase from the number of employees the business had at 30th September 2020. It is ok if you had zero employees at 30th September 2020. Each quarter the business must maintain or improve this increase to qualify for that quarter, measured at the last pay period for that quarter. So, for example, if the business employs someone at the start of the quarter but they don’t work out. They will not be employed by the end of the quarter and as a result there has been no increase in employees at the test date. The business will not receive any payment for the wages paid, to that employee, during that quarter.
Note the 30th September 2020 comparison headcount only applies for the first year. After that the bar will be raised.
There is also a test to ensure the actual payroll has increased in the claim period compared with the 3 months before 6th October 2020. This is intended to prevent a full-time employee being put off and two part-time employees being employed in order to increase the head count by one but for the same wages.
Employers that qualify –
There is nothing in this about a drop in income, it is available to most businesses and charities, that are not receiving Jobkeeper during the claim period. The exclusions are basically government entities. It is just a question of having eligible employees, an ABN, being registered as an employer and being up to date on all lodgements. New businesses can apply.
How much –
For employees that are between 16 and 29 years of age (inclusive) the rate of payment is $200 per week. Employees between 30 and 35 years of age (inclusive) only qualify for $100 per week. It is age at the start of the employment period that counts.
Jobmaker Claim Periods: – Note the headcount test date below is the date on which you need to make sure your number of employees exceeds the headcount on 30th September 2020 that is until 6th January 2022 and following when the comparison figure will change.
JobMaker Key Dates
|JobMaker Period Dates||Headcount
|1||7 October 2020 – 6 January 2021||6 January 2021|
|2||7 January 2021 – 6 April 2021||6 April 2021|
|3||7 April 2021 – 6 July 2021||6 July 2021|
|4||7 July 2021 – 6 October 2021||6 October 2021|
|5||7 October 2021 – 6 January 2022||6 January 2022|
|6||7 January 2022 – 6 April 2022||6 April 2022|
|7||7 April 2022 – 6 July 2022||6 July 2022|
|8||7 July 2022 – 6 October 2022||6 October 2022|