Further to our blogs on 16th April 2020 and 31st March 2020, we are following up with an update on the set of rules which will govern the JobKeeper Payment Scheme, including more detail on the Alternative Test related to turnover decline.

What is on offer?

The JobKeeper Payment is a wage subsidy scheme available to businesses impacted by Covid-19. The Government will provide $1,500 (before tax) per fortnight to eligible employers per eligible employee for the period 30th March 2020 to 27th September 2020.

What’s the update on enrolment and payment dates?

The Commissioner has extended the time to enrol for the initial JobKeeper periods, from 30th April 2020 until 31st May 2020.

If you enrol by 31st May 2020 you will still be able to claim for the fortnights in April and May, provided you meet all the eligibility requirements for each of those fortnights. This includes having paid your employees by the appropriate date for each fortnight.

For the first two fortnights (30th March – 12th April, 13th April – 26th April), you will have until 8th May 2020 to make these payments. If you do not pay your staff by this date, you will not be able to claim JobKeeper for the first two fortnights.

Decline in Turnover Tests

Entities will need to satisfy the decline in turnover through a basic test or the alternative test.

Basic test compares the GST turnover of any months from March 2020 to September 2020 with a corresponding period in 2019. Businesses satisfying the test will demonstrate a shortfall of 30% or more.

Alternative test will apply when:

  • the entity commenced business after the relevant comparison period (the business did not exist in that period)
  • the entity acquired or disposed of part of the business after the relevant comparison period (the business is not the same business in that period as it is now)
  • the entity undertook a restructure after the relevant comparison period (the business is not the same business in that period as it is now)
  • the entity’s turnover substantially increased by:
    • 50% or more in the 12 months immediately before the applicable turnover test period; or
    • 25% or more in the 6 months immediately before the applicable turnover test period, or
    • 12.5% or more in the 3 months immediately before the applicable turnover test period.
  • the entity was affected by drought or other declared natural disaster during the relevant comparison period
  • the entity has a large irregular variance in their turnover for the quarters ending in the 12 months before the applicable turnover test period, excluding entities that have cyclical or regular seasonal variance in their turnover, or
  • the entity is a sole trader or small partnership where sickness, injury or leave have impacted an individual’s ability to work which has affected turnover.

If you fall into more than one of the classes of entities covered by the alternative test, you can choose which alternative decline in turnover test to apply. You only need to satisfy one of the tests (it does not matter if you do not satisfy one of the other tests that applies to you).

The rules relating to the JobKeeper Payment are available here.

JobKeeper Administration

The rules note that companies will need to notify the ATO of its current GST turnover for the reporting month and its projected GST turnover for the following month on a monthly basis.

The rules also note that once an employer decides to participate in the JobKeeper scheme, all eligible employees must be covered by the scheme.


The Australian Government has clearly outlined the rules of the JobKeeper Payment Scheme; it is urged that eligible businesses apply for the scheme to help assist with the employment of staff and business operations.

 Let Us Help

 If your business has a turnover of over $1 million, ABJ Solutions is offering a complimentary 30 minute Zoom meeting to help answer questions and model critical decisions with you. Get in touch with us today so that we can help guide you through this challenging time.