Appointment of New Principal
It is with great pleasure that we announce the appointment of Mustapha Sawan as a principal of our practice. Mustapha joined the practice in 2007 as an undergraduate and progressed into the position he is today.
Mustapha is passionate about owner managed businesses with issues including accounting, taxation, succession planning and restructuring. Mustapha's appointment recognises his strong expertise, leadership and enthusiasm he brings to the practice and more importantly, to our clients.
Please join us in congratulating Mustapha on his appointment as principal.
Significant Changes To JobKeeper
Last week the Prime Minister and Treasurer announced significant changes to the JobKeeper Program.
From 28th September 2020, businesses will be required to reassess their eligibility for JobKeeper with reference to their actual GST turnover in the September quarter 2020, as compared to the September quarter in 2019, to be eligible for the JobKeeper payment from 28th September 2020 to 3rd January 2021.
To be eligible for JobKeeper payments under the extension, businesses will need to demonstrate that they have experienced a 30% decline in turnover.
This changes the original JobKeeper Scheme which was that the business had to have experienced, at least, a 30% drop in turnover in the June quarter as well as the September quarter.
This change will assist businesses in Victoria, which might not have been eligible under the original rules because they did not qualify for JobKeeper in the June 2020 quarter, but with the severe lockdown now in place, many businesses will probably be showing a turnover reduction of more than 30% in the September 2020 quarter. The Prime Minister has indicated that JobKeeper is a national program and therefore these changes will be implemented Australia wide.
JobKeeper Payment Adjustments
The Australian government made a number of very important announcements in late July, including the JobKeeper extension which, from 28th September 2020, will comprise two tiers with a reduction in the fortnightly payments payable to people who qualified at 1st March 2020.
Tier 1 applies to people who were working more than 20 hours per week at 1st March 2020. Tier 2 applies to people who were working less than 20 hours per week at 1st March 2020. In both cases, the people must still be employed by the business/charity.
Tier 1 payments from 28th September 2020 to 3rd January 2021 will be $1,200 per fortnight and from 3rd January 2021 to 28th March 2021 will be $1,000 per fortnight. Tier 2 payments from 28th September 2020 to 3rd January 2021 will be $750 per fortnight and from 3rd January 2021 will be $650 per fortnight.
JobKeeper - Eligibility Date Change
Expanded eligibility criteria for the JobKeeper Program was announced by the Federal Treasurer last week in response to further lockdowns in Victoria and other parts of Australia.
Under the new guidelines, an employee now only has to have been employed since 1st July 2020 instead of 1st March 2020 to be eligible for JobKeeper payments. The government believes that this will mean that more people will be able to qualify for the JobKeeper payments in the period July to September.
If you have any questions about any aspects of the operation of the expanded JobKeeper Program, please do not hesitate to contact us.
New Coronavirus SME Guarantee Loan
The Australian government has announced the introduction of a new loan for SMEs and businesses with up to 200 employees which will be available from banks from 1st October 2020.
The new Coronavirus SME Guarantee Loan will be for amounts of up to $1 million, repayable over a 5 year period. These loans will be 50% guaranteed by the Australian government. Loan applications will be open until 30th June 2021.
The loans can be used for any business purpose, not just for "working capital purposes", as was the requirement for the original Coronavirus SME Guarantee Loans of up to $250,000.
We anticipate that banks will require full documentation to be submitted as part of the loan application for the new Coronavirus SME Guarantee Loan. These will probably include a Business Plan for the period of 5 years, Budgets and Cashflow Forecasts and financial accounts for the year ended 30th June 2020.
If you are interested in applying for these loans, please do not hesitate to contact us.