JobKeeper Version 2

ATO Guidelines for JobKeeper

As we approach the end date for the initial JobKeeper period and transition into the extended JobKeeper Version 2, henceforth JobKeeper 2, employers must act now to plan for the two upcoming stages of the wage subsidy system.

The first period extends the current JobKeeper subsidy from the 28th September 2020 to 3rd January 2021 while the second period extends JobKeeper from the 4th January 2021 to 28th March 2021.

If your business requalifies for JobKeeper 2 from Monday, 28 September, your subsidy will be progressively reduced dependent on the number of hours employees work.

If you do not qualify you will need to reassess business profitability, cash flow and staff management strategies.

It will be important to let affected employees know what that new rate of the JobKeeper 2 payment arrangements will be.

Planning steps:

1. Review your eligibility for JobKeeper 2 – decline test 30%

  • To qualify for JobKeeper 2 the business must satisfy the 30% decline in turnover test for both the September and December quarters.
  • Compare the actual net GST revenue for the quarter in 2020 with the same quarter in 2019.
  • The comparison will be either on a cash or accrual basis based on how GST income is reported.
  • For a non-GST registered business, use either cash or accrual, but on a consistent basis.
  • Note that you may be eligible for one quarter but not the other.
  • Some alternate tests are available for start-up, drought-affected, irregular income and sickness affected businesses which will require specialist assessment.
  • You do not need to re-enrol for JobKeeper 2.

2. Identify eligible employees

  • Eligible employees are identified as either full or part-time based on the actual hours worked, including paid leave hours (sick, annual, carer, other) in the 28-day period ended either 28 February 2020 or 30th June 2020.
  • Tier 1 – Full-time: worked > 80 hours per 28 days
  • Tier 2 – Part-time/casuals: worked < 80 hours per 28 days
  • For eligible business participants, hours worked is based on “an assessment” of hours worked in operating the business in the month of February.
  • New employees can still be added to the scheme.

3. Calculate the new JobKeeper 2 subsidy

The original JobKeeper subsidy of $1,500 per fortnight is reduced in the September-December quarter and will be reduced again in the January – March quarter as follows:

 Old Rate 

New Rate
From 28th September 2020 

New Rate
From 4th January 2020

Full-time rate:
80 hours or more 

Per fortnight 

Per fortnight 

Per fortnight

Part-time rate:
Less than 80 hours

Per fortnight

Per fortnight

Per fortnight 

4. Communicate with employees

  • The original JobKeeper subsidy was to end on 28th September 2020.
  • Employers eligible for JobKeeper 2 should advise employees of the new payment subsidy amounts within 7 days of advising the ATO.
  • Employers no longer eligible should advise accordingly.

5. Implement the plan

  • Reassess your eligibility based on 30% decline test.
  • Identify eligible employees, working hours and payment amounts for each employee
  • Use single touch payroll to advise the ATO for each eligible employee of the new payment amount.
  • From 28th September commence payment of new JobKeeper 2 payments for all employees.
  • New employees can be registered from 28th September through the STP system.
  • From 1st October 2020 complete your monthly business declaration for September subsidy claim.
  • From 1st November 2020 complete your 999monthly business declaration for October subsidy claim


Your pdf copy: JobKeeper Version 2, Replaces Version 1 Effective 28 September 2020


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