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COVID-19 support – JobKeeper payment

Started ‎30 September 2020 by
Modified 4 weeks ago by

The JobKeeper Payment scheme was introduced to help provide a wage subsidy to businesses that are significantly affected by COVID-19.

Our JobKeeper guides provide step-by-step information on how to enrol and meet your monthly reporting obligations.

Check out this video for an overview of the payment:

If you have questions about workplace entitlements and obligations, or if you’re concerned that someone is doing the wrong thing in relation to JobKeeper, visit Keeping JobKeeper payment fair.

Businesses and employers

How do I apply for the second extension period?

If you’re enrolling for the second JobKeeper extension here are the steps you'll need to follow and dates you’ll need to meet to start receiving your reimbursements from February.

From 4 – 31 January 2021:

  • Enrol and submit your ‘check decline in turnover’ form
  • Pay your employees for JobKeeper fortnights 21 and 22

From 1 – 14 February 2021:

  • Complete the January business monthly declaration to receive your reimbursement for January 2021

You can find more information about the JobKeeper key dates on our website.

How do I calculate GST turnover?

To be eligible for the second extension period (4 January 2021 – 28 March 2021), you’ll need to demonstrate that your actual GST turnover has declined in the December 2020 quarter (October – December 2020) relative to a comparable period (generally October – December 2019).

Your GST turnover is your total business income, not just your profit. When you’re calculating GST turnover, don’t include any:

  • GST amounts
  • Input taxed sales
  • Sales not connected to your business (private sales)
  • Sales not made for payment
  • Payments for no supply
  • Gifts and donations (aside from those mentioned above)
  • Sales not connected with Australia

How do I assess if my employees and/or business participant are eligible for the JobKeeper extension?

If you’re already claiming JobKeeper for your employees and/or business participant before 28 September, you don’t need to reassess their eligibility.

See Your eligible employees if you’re new to JobKeeper and you want to work out which employees you can claim for.

When and how much do I pay my eligible employees and/or business participant for the second JobKeeper extension?

That will depend on which payment rate tier your eligible employees and/or business particpant fall into.

Here is a summary of how the payments work for the second extension period:

Extension period

How much do I need to pay my tier 1 employees?

How much do I need to pay my tier 2 employees?

Extension 2

4 January 2021 – 28 March 2021


You'll need to withhold tax along with any other payments each fortnight and continue paying super for the hours that your employees work.

See How much to pay if your eligible employee normally earns less or more than the applicable minimum amount a fortnight.

How do I work out what payment tier an employee or business participant falls into?

It will depend on whether they meet the 80-hour threshold. Your employee will satisfy the 80-hour threshold if, in their 28-day reference period, the total of the following is 80 hours or more:

  • actual hours they worked
  • hours they were on paid leave
  • hours they were paid for absence on a public holiday.

If your eligible employee satisfies the 80-hour threshold, you can claim the tier 1 payment rate for them. If they do not meet the 80-hour threshold, you can claim the tier 2 payment for them.

Tier 1

Tier 2

  • eligible employees who meet the 80-hour threshold in the reference period for either 1 March 2020 or 1 July 2020, and
  • eligible business participants who meet the 80-hour threshold for February and provide a declaration to that effect
  • any other eligible employees and eligible business participants.

What if I make an employee redundant or they resign?

If you made your employee redundant after the appropriate eligibility date, you can choose to re-engage them and claim JobKeeper on their behalf if you both meet the eligibility criteria. You can only pay them JobKeeper from the fortnight they were re-engaged.

If your employee resigns within a JobKeeper fortnight, you will need to pay them for that fortnight and notify us through your monthly declaration.

Do I include JobKeeper payments on my activity statement?

No. However, if you’re registered for PAYG Withholding then you would still report total salary/wages and withheld amounts as usual on your activity statement.

Sole traders, partners, trust beneficiaries, shareholders and directors

What if I have another job?

To enrol for JobKeeper as an eligible business participant, you can’t be an employee (other than a casual employee) of another entity at the time of enrolment.

If you’re an eligible sole trader and also a long-term casual employee of another business, you can choose to let your employer claim the JobKeeper payments on your behalf, or you can claim as a sole trader, but not both.

Once you are enrolled as an eligible business participant, you are allowed to gain permanent employment and earn additional income, however you must remain actively engaged in your business.

Do I need to be registered for GST to meet the turnover tests?

No you don't need to be registered for GST.

To claim a JobKeeper payment as a sole trader, or on the basis of your participation in a business of a trust, partnership or company, you needed to hold an active ABN at 12 March 2020 and have either reported certain business income or GST sales. In limited cases, further time can be provided to meet the requirements. See Commissioner's discretion to allow further time.

Employees and individuals

What if I’m on paid or un-paid leave (including maternity leave), am I still eligible for the payment?

Yes, unless you are in receipt of any of these payments during the JobKeeper fortnight:

  • government parental leave or Dad and partner pay
  • a payment in accordance with Australian worker compensation law for an individual’s total incapacity for work.

The JobKeeper payment is a wage subsidy for your employer so if your employer is paying you an annual leave payment, the applicable tier 1 or tier 2 amount will subsidise part or all of this amount – it’s not an additional amount.

If you’re concerned about your leave balance and JobKeeper, see FairWork's website.

If I have multiple jobs, which employer am I eligible through?

You can only receive the payment from one employer at a time. Here are some different scenarios:

  1. Long-term casual and permanent job: In this situation, you can’t be nominated by your casual employer, you must choose your permanent employer. If your permanent employer isn’t eligible to claim the payment, you won’t be eligible either.
  2. Fixed-term contract and long-term casual: if you're a fixed term contractor at the appropriate eligibility date, and also a long-term casual, you can only choose to nominate through your fixed-term contract employer, not your casual employer. If the fixed-term contract is renewed before 28 March 2021, you will continue to be eligible for JobKeeper Payment under that employer. If your fixed-term contract isn’t renewed before 28 March 2021, you will likely cease being eligible for the JobKeeper Payment.
  3. Two long-term casual jobs or two permanent jobs: If you receive nominations from both employers, you can choose the one you want to get the payment from.
  4. Long-term casual who gets an additional permanent part-time job after the eligibility cut off date: If you were a long-term casual on the appropriate eligibility date and you later get an additional permanent job, you can still claim JobKeeper through your casual employer. You’re allowed to earn additional income while you are on JobKeeper as long as you maintain your employment relationship with your JobKeeper-eligible employer.
  5. My employment with my JobKeeper nominated employer ended before 1 July 2020: You can now be nominated by an alternative employer however you can still only be nominated by one employer at any given time.

My primary employer is no longer eligible under the JobKeeper extension. Can I claim with my secondary employer?

That depends. To be able to change your JobKeeper employer you need to meet a few criteria:

Between 1 March 2020 and 1 July 2020 you must have:

  • stopped employment with your previous employer, or
  • stopped being actively engaged as an eligible business participant

At the time you agree to be nominated you cannot:

  • have been rehired by your previous employer
  • restarted being actively engaged as an eligible business participant

You must also meet all other eligibility requirements for the extension.

If I start a new job, will I stop receiving JobKeeper?

Not necessarily. You can earn additional income without your JobKeeper payments being affected as long as you maintain your employment (including being stood down) with your JobKeeper-eligible employer.

How do I know if my employer is receiving JobKeeper?

Talk to your employer. If your employer chooses to participate in the JobKeeper scheme (they don’t have to), it’s their responsibility to notify each eligible employee that they intend to nominate.

If you meet the eligibility requirements and agree to be nominated, you need to complete a JobKeeper employee nomination notice and return it to your employer.

Once you have done this, generally you cannot change the employer who is claiming JobKeeper payments for you unless you are nominated by a new employer for JobKeeper fortnight 10 onwards (from 3 August 2020) and you meet certain requirements.

You can also refuse to participate if you choose.

Check out our employees page for more information.

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