Further to our broadcast yesterday regarding an extension of time to enrol for the JobKeeper Wage Subsidy Scheme from 30 April to 31 May 2020, the ATO has now also extended the deadline that employers will need to pay the initial $1,500 fortnightly payments to eligible employees from 30 April to 8 May 2020.

The Assistant Treasurer of the Australian Taxation Office (ATO), Michael Sukkar noted that “This extension allows businesses further time to consider their circumstances and remove any cash-flow pressures arising from financing arrangements that have not been finalised … Importantly, this extension does not negate the obligation on businesses to ensure they continue to pay eligible employees $1,500 in each JobKeeper fortnight”.

Employers will now need to ensure that they have paid all eligible employees at least $3,000 (before tax) in respect of the first 2 fortnights in April 2020 by 8 May 2020.  They will also need to ensure that they have processed their payroll according to the specific JobKeeper payroll instructions advised by their relevant software provider.

It is important to note that a business will not be able to make the initial claim to the ATO for the JobKeeper Wage Subsidy until they have actually made the payments to their eligible employees for the first 2 fortnights in April 2020.

For further information in relation to the JobKeeper Wage Subsidy Scheme, or your payroll system requirements, please contact your Cooper Reeves Adviser.