How major JobKeeper and JobSeeker changes will impact you
Millions of Australians will soon receive less money from the government as major changes to the JobKeeper and JobSeeker payments come into effect.
From 28 September the JobKeeper payment will only be extended for businesses and not-for-profits still significantly impacted by the COVID-19 pandemic, while payment rates will be split into two separate tiers and gradually reduced.
Meanwhile the COVID-19 supplement added to JobSeeker payments is also due to be reduced from next week.
JobKeeper is slated to continue until March 28, while the JobSeeker top up will stay until at least the end of 2020.
The Budget, due to be handed down by Treasurer Josh Frydenberg on October 6, will not factor in any JobKeeper payments beyond March, however the federal government has not ruled a further extension of the scheme in or out.
So far more than 900,000 businesses have received JobKeeper payments worth about $55 billion since the scheme was introduced in the early months of the pandemic.
JOBKEEPER CHANGES FOR FULL-TIME WORKERS
From September 28 the fortnightly payment for full-time workers decreases by $300 to $1,200.
The payment will remain at that level until the end of the year, before dropping again to $1,000 a fortnight from January 3 until JobKeeper is due to wrap up on 28 March 2021.
JOBKEEPER CHANGES FOR PART-TIME WORKERS
People who were working fewer than 20 hours a week before July or "pre-COVID" will have their JobKeeper payment halved to $750 a fortnight from September 28.
At the beginning of 2021 the rate will drop again to $650 a fortnight.
The "two tier" system is designed to more accurately reflect the normal wage of a part-time employee compared to someone working full time.
JOBKEEPER CHANGES FOR BUSINESS OWNERS
For business owners, sole traders and not-for-profits to continue to be eligible for the JobKeeper payments for their workers, they must demonstrate significant decline in revenue each quarter.
To receive the payments for the rest of the year, small and medium businesses must demonstrate a 30 per cent drop in revenue for the September quarter, compared to pre-COVID.
Charities only need show a 15 per cent fall, while large businesses with a turnover of more than $1 billion must show a 50 per cent drop.
To qualify for the support from January the businesses must demonstrate the same drop in the December quarter.
JOBSEEKER WELFARE PAYMENT CHANGES
The $550 supplement topping up the normal JobSeeker payment will drop to $250 from September 25, however recipients will be permitted to earn up to $300 a fortnight to make up the difference.
The drop in the supplement will bring the total JobSeeker payment to $815, down from $1,115.
The federal government is also reintroducing the assets test and increasing the partner income test, from 25 cents for every dollar of partner income earned over $996 a fortnight, to 27 cents for every dollar of partner income earned over $1,165 a fortnight.
JobSeeker recipients will need to update their Centrelink online account through myGov to ensure all assets are listed.
From September 28, people must start meeting their "mutual obligation" requirements, such as looking for a specific number of jobs.
The Department of Education, Skills and Employment will send an SMS to people who are required to do certain activities.
No suspensions or penalties will apply to Victorians who cannot meet their mutual obligation requirements due to the ongoing second wave lockdown.
So far the $250 COVID-19 top up payment has only been extended to the end of 2020, with the Prime Minister previously saying he expects it will continue in some form in the new year.
More information on the future of the COVID-19 supplement will be announced toward the end of the year.
Originally published as How major JobKeeper and JobSeeker changes will impact you