The government yesterday launched their Stage 2 stimulus package designed to further soften the blow.
The $66 billion package includes relief for retirees, and a “safety net” for workers already bearing the brunt of the crisis and further relief for “small business” to assist them to keep people employed.
1. Casuals and sole traders
If you’ve found yourself affected by the economic downturn, you’ll be able to access a “coronavirus supplement” of $550 a fortnight for the next six months.
This is in addition to other benefits — so if you’re already receiving payments through Jobseeker (formerly known as Newstart), you can claim both.
Sole traders or casual workers who have had their income or hours reduced by 20 per cent or more as a result of coronavirus will also be able to access up to $10,000 of their superannuation tax-free this financial year and another $10,000 next financial year.
If you’re not eligible to receive the coronavirus supplement, you could still be able to claim a $750 stimulus payment.
The payment will be made automatically from July 13 to about 5 million Australians, including those receiving the age pension, a carers allowance or family tax benefit and Commonwealth senior card holders.
That’s in addition to the $750 stimulus payment announced earlier this month.
Deeming rates will be reduced by a further 0.25 percentage points to reflect the latest rate reductions by the RBA.
This is important because deeming rates are used for the pension income assessment — and therefore affect how much someone will receive through their pension.
According to the Government, the change will benefit around 900,000 income support recipients, including age pensioners, and is estimated to cost $876 million over the forward estimates period.
4. Employers who want to keep staff
Not-for-profits and small businesses with a turnover under $50 million will receive a tax-free cash payment of up to $100,000 to help them retain staff and continue operating.
The Government expects 690,000 businesses employing 7.8 million people and 30,000 not-for-profits will be eligible for measures in the stimulus package.
By linking the payments to staff wage tax withholdings, businesses will be given an incentive to hold on to more of their workers.
This initiative is focus on small businesses and will assist them to bridge the gap and get to the other side of the pandemic.
If you need more information, please call your Caveo Adviser/Accountant to discuss any elements of the package further.
The government has provided some excellent fact sheets on the various assistance packages available. For more information go to – https://treasury.gov.au/coronavirus
Based on what the Prime Minister said yesterday there will be more to come…