We know that many of you will be facing uncertainty around your financial situation. Many of you are facing job losses and forced business closures and are under significant stress. Here we have summarised the government measures to support individuals and households in response to COVID-19 in clear, simple language to make it as easy as possible for you. We have a similar summary for business owners that can be accessed here.
Please share this information if you think it will help family and friends. Know that our team of financial planners and accountants are here to support you. We are open for business and are conducting meetings via video call, or in-person on request. You can contact us here.
Government measures to support individuals and households
- Income support for individuals
- Payments to support households
- Early access to superannuation
Income support for individuals
A $550 fortnightly payment will be available to support individuals whose employment has been affected by COVID-19. This payment will be available for the next six months.
The payment is available to the following individuals:
- Full-time workers who have been stood down or otherwise lost employment, sole traders, the self-employed, casual workers, and contract workers
- Individuals required to care for someone who is affected by the Coronavirus
The Coronavirus supplement is not subject to asset testing, however they will be income tested. Sole Traders and those who are self-employed will be required to make a declaration that their business has been suspended or had turnover reduced significantly.
Payments to support households
Two separate $750 payments will be available to provide further support for those currently receiving regular government benefits. The first payment will be made automatically on 31 March and the second made on 13 July.
People eligible to receive this payment include those who are receiving Family Tax Benefit, Parenting Payment, Age Pension, Disability Support Pension and Carer Payment. You can view a full list of those eligible for payments here.
Early access to superannuation
Eligible individuals can access up to $10,000 of their superannuation balance in the 2019-20 financial year and a further $10,000 in 2020-21 financial year.
Those eligible include:
- Individuals that are currently unemployed or receiving job seeking payments, youth allowance, parenting payments, special benefit payments, or farm household allowances
- Individuals that were made redundant or had their working hours reduced by 20% or more in 2020
- Sole traders whose business was suspended or saw a reduction in turnover greater than 20 percent
Any amount withdrawn from super is not subject to tax.
We have focussed this summary on the measures most relevant to our clients. Full details of the Government measures to support individuals, including reducing superannuation minimum drawdown rates and social security deeming rates can be found can be found here.