COVID-19: Summary of Tax Breaks and Cash Assistance

Updated March 31st 2020

Updated as at 31 March 2020

Important note: Federal Government measures still need to pass parliament, however Labor has pledged to support the legislation for these measures.

Business – Federal Government
Business – Other Measures
  • NSW government
    • Payroll tax – for businesses whose total grouped Australian wages for the 2019/20 financial year are no more than $10 million
      • For businesses who lodge monthly payroll tax returns no payment for the months of March, April or May 2020 will be required. Lodgement still required.
      • Annual tax liability reduced by 25% when they lodge their annual reconciliation, which is due on 28 July
  • Western Australia government
    • Payroll tax – businesses with a payroll between $1 million and $4 million will receive a one-off grant of $17,500
    • Payroll tax – small and medium sized businesses affected by COVID-19 can now apply to defer payment of their 2019-20 payroll tax until July 21, 2020
  • New Zealand government
    • A wages subsidy equal to $585.80 per week for a full time New Zealand employee for a period of 12 weeks is available for eligible business whose turnover has reduced by 30% or more due to COVID-19.

Individuals – Federal Government

  • Expanded access to government income support for individuals including permanent employees who are stood down
    • Update 31/3/2020 – If a spouse is still working and earning income they can earn up to $80,000 (up from $48,000) and the non working spouse will still be eligible some government income support.
    • If a stood down employee is getting paid by their employer, for example annual leave or receiving income protection they are not eligible
    • Extended access for payment due to start from 27 April 2020.
    • Example payment for a person with a partner is $1,068 per fortnight.
    • Factsheet: Income support for individuals
  • Eligible individuals can access up to $20,000 from their superannuation
    • Criteria for access includes being made redundant or working hours reduced by more than 20%.
    • Up to $10,000 can be accessed by 30 June 2020 and then another $10,000 prior to 30 June 2021.
    • Factsheet: Early access to superannuation
  • Two separate payments of $750 to social security, veteran and other income support recipients and eligible concession cardholders.
  • Minimum pensions drawdown rates have been reduced by 50% for the 30 June 2020 and 30 June 2021 years

Bank and lender repayment holidays

  • Numerous banks and lenders have announced they will support individuals and business customers during this time. If you are experiencing financial hardship during this time we suggest you contact your lender(s) to request repayment holidays.

Travel restrictions

  • The following states have announced they are closing their borders, except for essential services, which may affect business and personal travel:
    • Western Australia
    • Tasmania
    • South Australia
    • Northern Territory
  • The Federal government has also advised that the Australian borders are closed except for Australian citizens, residents and immediate family members.

Source for updated information

The Australian Government is recommending that people refer to the following website for updates and further information:

Download the Factsheets