August 21′ Lockdown support

August 21 COVID lockdown support

Financial support for individuals and business has constantly evolved and changed as we’ve faced repeated lockdown within a couple of days of being open (and as each of the states finalise their criteria). This has meant that the grants and rules for each of those grants have continually changed.

Now that the grants, eligibility criteria and amounts are set in stone we’ve provided a summary of the latest support available to individuals and businesses.

We’re in the process of calling each client that we beleive is eligible in the next day to ensure they do not miss out, as well as the next steps.

Individuals who have lost 20 or more hours of work during the lockdown will be eligible for $750 (up from $600), while people who lose 8-20 hours will get $450 (up from $300). Meanwhile, there are a myriad of grants available to businesses depening on the state they are in.

Lockdown Support for Victorian Businesses

We’ve continually reported updates in COVID grant funding and previously this was only relevant for those businesses in hospitality, tourism etc. We are now thrilled that businesses in Victoria who have not received any support to date are now eligible to the Hardship fund, with a grant of up to $10,000 for SME’s that have experienced a 70 per cent reduction in turnover.

Small Business COVID Hardship Fund (VIC) – $10,000

A new Small Business COVID Hardship Fund grant of up to $10,000 has been announced for businesses that are not eligible for existing support funding. This grant is available to employing and non-employing entities.

To access the grant, your business must:

  • be located within Victoria and registered for GST from 28 July 2021;
  • be severely impacted by the COVID-19 lockdowns between 27 May 2021 and August 2021;
  • show a decline in turnover of 70% or more over a 2 week period compared to 2019;
  • be ineligible for any of the other COVID-19 Victorian Government business grants since 27 May 2021; &
  • have payroll of less than $10M in 2019-20.
  • Note: employing entites must be registered for WorkCover and must support workers where ever possible.

Applications are now open and close 10 September 2021.  Applications require a registered tax agent to complete and assessment to verify the 70% drop in business turnover (business owners can apply directly however will require verification to be completed and a delay of up to 25 days).

For more information select this link.

Business Costs Assistance (VIC): $4,800 & $2,800

This program provides a grant of either $4,800 (& $2,800 for round three) to businesses directly affected by the extended restrictions, including hospitality venues, event suppliers, accommodation providers and non-essential retailers.

It applies to businesses that:

  • have incurred direct costs as a result of the current restrictions;
  • cannot predominantly work remotely;
  • are located within Victoria;
  • have payroll less than $10M & registered with WorkCover;
  • are registered for GST as at 15 July 2021;
  • have not received a grant under the Business Costs Assistance Roung Two or Licensed Hospitality Fund 2021; and
  • operate in non-essential retail, hospitality, tourism, events & related services, education, healthcare and social assistance (refer to this list).

If you have not yet received any correspondence regarding the above grant, but believe you meet the eligibility requirements please contact us ASAP.

Applications close 20 August 2021 click here to find our more. Round three is automatically paid. Businesses in the 24 sectors that were affected by capacity limits are also eligible for the Business Continuity Fund payment.

Licensed Hospitality 2021 July Extension (VIC): $7,200

This program supports eligible licensed hospitality venues that were affected by the COVID-19 restrictions announced on 15 July 2021, but did not apply for the Licensed Hospitality Venue Fund 2021 in June 2021.

If you have not yet received any correspondence regarding the above grant, but believe you meet the eligibility requirements please contact us ASAP.

Alpine businesses will also receive between $5,000 (off-mountain) and $20,000 (employing businesses, on mountain) under a $10.6 million extension of the Alpine Business Support Program.

Applications close 20 August 2021 for more information click here.

Rent Releif for commercial tenants

Rent relief for commercial tenants is also now in place for businesses that have suffered a decline in turnover of at least 30% as a result of COVID-19.

Landlords will be required to provide proportional rent relief in line with a business’s reduction in turnover and mediation is available through the Victorian Small Business Commission. A hardship fund will be established for landlords providing rent relief although no details are available as yet.

Support for Businesses in other States

Support for NSW Businesses – up to $15,000

The NSW Government has announced grants of up to $15,000 for businesses adversely impacted by the recent COVID-19 lockdowns in July 2021. Eligibility for the grant is streamed into general business, and hospitality and tourism.

The value of the grant is determined by the impact of the lockdown on your turnover. Your business will need to prove a decline in turnover across a minimum 2 week period within the relevant test period.

Turnover DeclineGrant
70%+$15,000
50% to <70%$10,500
30% to <50%$7,500

The grant is limited to businesses (including sole traders) with:

  • A NSW registered ABN or able to demonstrate they are physically located and primarily operating in NSW; and
  • Annual turnover of more than $75,000 for the year ending 30 June 2020; but
  • Below the NSW Government 2020-21 payroll tax threshold of $1.2m as at 1 July 2020; with
  • Fewer than 20 full time equivalent employees.

Applications for the grant open 18 July 2021 and requires evidence to support eligibility which includes copies of lodged returns, accountants letter with supporting reports and a declaration. Payments will be processed from late July 2021.

Other financial support packages in NSW include the Microbusiness grant from 26 June 2021 (up to $1,500 per fortnight for those with less than $75k turnover).

Jobsaver cash flow (NSW): up to $100,000

Up to $100,000 in weekly JobSaver cashflow support payments.

Payments are based on 40% of your NSW payroll payments. Eligible businesses without employees that meet the eligibility criteria (such as sole traders with no employees), can access a payment of $1,000 per week.

Adaptation Grant (QLD) – $10,000

A Small Business COVID-19 Adaption Grant of between $2,000 and $10,000 is available to eligible regional Queensland businesses. The grant requires your business to have suffered a decline in turnover of at least 30% because of COVID-19 for at least one month since 23 March 2020. The grant is accessible to businesses with less than 20 staff.

Business Support Grant (QLD): $5,000

$5,000 Business Support Grants are available for those impacted by the lockdown from Saturday, 31 July 2021. Your business does not have to be in the local government areas locked down but needs to be impacted by it. To access the grant, you will need to show a decline in turnover of at least 30%. The grants are available to businesses with a turnover of $75,000 or more and annual Queensland payroll of less than $10 million.

Applications open mid-August. See Business Queensland for details.

Business Support Grant (SA): $3,000

Grants of $3,000 for employing businesses and $1,000 for non-employing businesses are available to businesses that experienced a decline in turnover of at least 30% as a result of the health restrictions from 20 July 2021. The grants are available to those with a turnover of $75,000 or more and Australia wide payroll of less than $10 million.

See COVID-19 Business Support Grant – July 2021 for details.

Financial support for Individuals

If you can’t work because you or someone in your household is impacted by COVID-19, support is available.

There are two payments accessible to individuals: the COVID-19 Disaster Payment; and, the Pandemic Leave Disaster Payment.

 

COVID-19 Disaster Payments

The COVID-19 Disaster Payment is a weekly payment available to eligible workers who can’t attend work or who have lost income because of a lockdown and don’t have access to certain paid leave entitlements. If you are a couple, both people can separately claim the payment.

The disaster payment is generally accessible if the hotspot triggering the lockdown as declared by the Chief Medical Officer (you can find the listing here).

From 2 August 2021, the COVID-19 Disaster Payment has increased to a maximum of $750 per week for those who have lost 20 hours of work or more, and $450 for those who have lost between 8 and 20 hours of work. In most cases, the payment now applies from day 1 of a lockdown. In general, you need to be living in, or impacted by Commonwealth declared lockdown to receive the payment although some States have funded an extension of the payment beyond hotspot areas.

A special separate $200 a week ‘top-up’ payment has been added for those currently receiving an income support payment through social security, ABSTUDY Living Allowance, Dad and Partner Pay or Parental Leave Pay in addition to their existing payment, if they can demonstrate they have lost more than 8 hours of work and meet the other eligibility requirements for the COVID-19 Disaster Payment. The payment was put in place because people receiving income support payments are not eligible for the COVID-19 Disaster payment.

Eligiblity

The COVID-19 disaster payment is emergency relief. It is available if you:

  • Live or work in an area that is subject to a state or territory public health order that imposes restriction on movement and is declared a Commonwealth COVID-19 hotspot, or
  • Have visited an area that is a Commonwealth COVID-19 hotspot and you are subsequently subject to a restricted movement order when you return to other parts of New South Wales or interstate.

And you:

  • Are an Australian citizen, permanent resident or temporary visa holder who has the right to work in Australia, and
  • Are aged 17 years or over, and
  • Have lost 8 hours or more of work or a full day of your usual work as a result of the restrictions – losing work includes being stood down by your employer, not being assigned any shifts for the week of restrictions and being unable to work from home. Losing a full day of what you were scheduled to work but could not work because of a restricted movement order. This includes not being able to attend a full-time, part-time or casual shift of less than 8 hours, and
  • Don’t have paid leave available through your employer (other than annual leave), and
  • Are not receiving income support payments, a state or territory pandemic payment, Pandemic Leave Disaster Payment or state small business payment for the same period. Income support payments include Age Pension, Austudy, Carer Payment, Disability Support Pension, Farm Household Allowance, JobSeeker Payment, Parenting Payment, Partner Allowance, Special Benefit, Widow Allowance, Youth Allowance and Income Support Supplement, Service Pension or Veteran Pension from the Department of Veterans’ Affairs.

A liquid assets test of $10,000 previously applied to the disaster payment but was removed from Thursday, 8 July 2021.

How to apply for support

You can apply for the COVID-19 Disaster Payment through your MyGov account if you have created and linked a Centrelink account.

If you don’t have a myGov account, you can create one. If your myGov account isn’t linked to Centrelink, you can prove who you are through myGov to link to Centrelink.

Apply for the Pandemic Leave Payment by phoning Services Australia on 180 22 66.

Pandemic Leave Disaster Payment

The Pandemic Leave Disaster Payment is for those who have been advised by their relevant health authority to self-isolate or quarantine because they:

  • Test positive to COVID-19;
  • Have been identified as a close contact of a confirmed COVID-19 case;
  • Care for a child, 16 years or under, who has COVID-19; or
  • Care for a child, 16 years or under, who has been identified as a close contact of a confirmed COVID-19 case; or
  • Care for a person who has tested positive to COVID-19.

How much is the Pandemic Leave Disaster Payment?

The payment is $1,500 for each 14 day period you are advised to self-isolate or quarantine. If you are a couple, you both can claim this payment if you meet the eligibility criteria.

Who is eligible to receive it?

The Pandemic Leave Disaster Payment is available if you:

  • Are an Australian citizen, permanent resident or temporary visa holder who has the right to work in Australia; and
  • Are aged 17 years or over; and
  • Are unable to go to work and earn an income; and
  • Do not have appropriate leave entitlements, including pandemic sick leave, personal leave or carers leave; and
  • Are not getting any income support payment, ABSTUDY Living Allowance, Paid parental leave or Dad and Partner Pay. Income support payments include Age Pension, Austudy, Carer Payment, Disability Support Pension, Farm Household Allowance, JobSeeker Payment, Parenting Payment, Partner Allowance, Special Benefit, Widow Allowance, Youth Allowance and Income Support Supplement, Service Pension or Veteran Pension from the Department of Veterans’ Affairs.

The payment is taxable and you will need to declare it in your income tax return.

If you are uncertain of your eligibility, talk to Services Australia.  If you are concerned about the impact of disaster relief payments on you, feel free to talk to us.

For further information please contact us on 1300 878 876 or send us an email to contact@upturn.com.au..

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