Not-for profit entities that are not ineligible entities that pursued their objectives principally in Australia (on 1 March 2020), and also meet the turnover tests, are able to enroll in the JobKeeper payment scheme. Enrolment for the scheme has now been extended until 31 May 2020.
With religious practitioners now included as eligible for the JobKeeper program, here is some useful information from the ATO on the mechanics of how it can be collected. It is particularly detailed with information for religious practitioners under the Coronavirus Economic Response Package (Payments and Benefits) Amendment Rules (No. 2) 2020 (Division 3A, sections 12A, 12B and 12C).
The JobKeeper scheme provides wage subsidies of $1,500 per fortnight (before tax) for each eligible employee who remains employed and whose salary is still paid by the eligible employer. Permanent employees (either full time or part time), religious practitioners or long term casuals (without other permanent or full time employment) are eligible for the payment. Payments will be made to employers each month in arrears and payments will commence in the first week of May 2020.
Unlike other businesses, charities that are eligible entities and registered with the ACNC (other than universities or non-government schools) only need to show a decline in aggregate turnover of 15% to meet the turnover test. Unfortunately, charities that are not registered with the ACNC (or are universities or non-government schools) with aggregate turnover of less than $1 Billion will need to demonstrate a decline in turnover of 30% to be eligible for the scheme.
For an organisation registered with the ACNC under the subtype of advancing religion, it must be established that the BAS return for the employer entity reflects a turnover at least 15% less than for the same period last year. Where the members of a religious organisation are “employed” or, in the case of individuals, receiving a stipend or a fringe benefit, the “employer” can claim Job Keeper and will be paid $1,500 per fortnight for each “employee”. Such organisations may have internal arrangements in place to govern how the payment is receipted and applied.
The calculation is based on GST turnover (even where an entity is not registered for GST) and the ATO has provided advice on how to work out if an organisation meets the turnover tests. There are also alternative tests available in the event that the basic tests are not suitable, due to a change in an entity’s structure or due to significant growth in the previous year.
The Government has clarified the operation of the rules in regards to certain NFP entities: for more information see the Media Release 24 April 2020.