The JobKeeper program and the Coronavirus Supplement have been extended under the next phase of our support for affected businesses and households.
This unprecedented economic support for local businesses and their workers is helping community through the COVID-19 pandemic and bolstering our economic recovery.
Under the Government’s next phase of support, the JobKeeper Payment will continue at its current level until 27 September, after which it will be extended for a further six months to 28 March 2021.
A two-tiered payment will also be introduced so as to better reflect the pre-COVID-19 income of payment recipients.
Specifically, from 28 September until 3 January next year, the two payments will be $1,200 and $750 per fortnight, with the lower payment for employees who worked less than 20 hours a week in the month of February pre-COVID-19.
From 4 January to 28 March next year, the two payments will be $1,000 and $650.
The temporary Coronavirus Supplement for those on income support will also be extended until 31 December 2020. The $550 per fortnight Supplement will continue until 24 September.
From 25 September until 31 December, the Supplement will be $250 per fortnight, reducing by the same amount as the JobKeeper payment.
Both existing and new income support recipients will continue to be paid the Coronavirus Supplement.
The Government will also ensure income support is appropriately targeted as the economy recovers by reintroducing a range of means testing arrangements.
From 25 September 2020, the assets test and the Liquid Assets Waiting Period will be reintroduced and the JobSeeker Payment partner income test will increase from 25 cents for every dollar of partner income earned over $996 per fortnight to 27 cents for every dollar of partner income earned over $1,165 per fortnight.
The Government will also improve incentives to work by increasing the income free area for JobSeeker Payment and Youth Allowance (Other) from $106 per fortnight to $300 per fortnight and will simplify the taper rate from a dual taper of 50 cents and 60 cents to a single taper of 60 cents. This will mean recipients are more easily able to calculate the value of every dollar they earn.
These changes will mean individuals will be able to earn up to $300 per fortnight without foregoing any JobSeeker payment or affecting their eligibility for the Coronavirus Supplement.
The expanded criteria for JobSeeker Payment and Youth Allowance (Other) will continue to provide payment access for permanent employees who are stood down or lose their employment, sole traders, and the self-employed until 31 December 2020.
Reduced waiting times, including the Ordinary Waiting Period, Newly Arrived Resident’s Waiting Period (NARWP) and the Seasonal Work Preclusion Period, will continue to be waived until 31 December 2020.
The new arrangements for the Coronavirus Supplement are expected to cost an additional $3.8 billion.
This continued support for Australians who are without work, and for businesses and their workers will help our community to not only get through this crisis, but recover on the other side.
The extension of support recognises that Australia’s economic recovery is still in its early stages and a number of local businesses and individuals remain significantly affected by the global COVID-19 pandemic.
The Government’s focus remains on reopening the economy where it is safe to do so, but the extension of these measures recognises that some parts of the economy will continue to be affected and need continued support.
Sadly, as a result of this global health pandemic, businesses will close and people will lose their jobs, but that is why we have extended the Coronavirus Supplement and announced a new skills package to help people transition from welfare to work.
We are extending the JobKeeper payment beyond September to help keep businesses in business and Australians in jobs as our economy reopens.
The program has made a difference to local businesses by keeping a connection between employers and employees to help them get to the other side of the crisis.
JobKeeper Payment rates from 28 September 2020 to 28 March 2021:
Date Full rate per fortnight Less than 20hrs worked per fortnight rate
28 September 2020 to 3 January 2021 $1,200 $750
4 January 2021 to 28 March 2021 $1,000 $650
For more information: treasury.gov.au/coronavirus