Quick Reference Guide: Government Support for Businesses COVID-19 - Exit Advisory Group

Quick Reference Guide: Government Support for Businesses COVID-19


Your Quick Guide to the Australian Government and States COVID-19 packages.

The Australian Government and State Governments have a number of support packages and grants available for business owners and employees during COVID-19. Here is a quick guide so you can review what you are eligible for.

Updated information as at 20 April 2020. To ensure you are getting the most up to date information, please visit the Government sites as outlined in this document.







Employers that have had a reduction in revenue

Jobkeeper payments

Eligible employers will receive a $1,500 per fortnight 'job keeper payment' before tax for each employee.

Eligible employers:

- Turnovers of under $1 billion that have a reduction of revenue of 30%

- Turnovers of over $1 billion with a reduction of revenue of 50% 

The 30% or 50% revenue reduction is compared to the equivalent period last year (minimum of one month).

The fortnightly $1,500 payment per employee will start to be paid from 1 May 2020 and will be backdated to 30 March 2020. If employees have been stood down by their employer since 1 March 2020, they are still eligible for these payments.

Employers with aggregated annual turnover under $50M

Cash flow boost payments

Eligible businesses and not-for-profit (NFP) organisations will receive between $20,000 to $100,000 in cash flow boost amounts by lodging their activity statements up to the month or quarter of September 2020.

An additional cash flow boost will be applied when activity statements for each monthly or quarterly period from June to September 2020 are lodged. These credits are equal to the total boosts credited for March to June 2020. They will be paid out in either two or four instalments depending on your reporting cycle.

You must lodge your activity statement to receive the cash flow boosts.

Employers with apprentices and trainees

Wage subsidy for apprentices & trainees

A wage subsidy of 50% of apprentice/trainees wage during the 9 months from 1 Jan 2020 - 30 Sep 2020 will be made available to employers with existing apprentices and trainees (up to a max of $21,000)

Businesses with aggregated annual turnover under $500M

Increasing the instant asset write-off

Under instant asset write-off eligible businesses can:

  • immediately write off the cost of each asset that cost less than the threshold
  • claim a tax deduction for the business portion of the purchase cost in the year the asset is first used or installed ready for use.

Instant asset write-off can be used for both new and second-hand assets. Some exclusions and limits apply.


Accelerated Depreciation

Measures introduced in March 2020 provide an incentive to businesses with aggregated turnover of less than $500 million for the 2019–20 and 2020–21 income years, to deduct the cost of depreciating assets at an accelerated rate.

For each new asset, the accelerated depreciation deduction applies in the income year that the asset is first used or installed ready for use for a taxable purpose. You claim the deduction when lodging your tax return for the income year. The usual depreciating asset arrangements apply in the subsequent income years that the asset is held.

SME's with aggregated annual turnover under $50M

SME loan scheme

The Coronavirus SME Guarantee Scheme will provide small and medium sized business with timely access to working capital to help them get through the impact of the Coronavirus.

The Government will provide eligible lenders with a guarantee for loans with the following terms:

  • SMEs, including sole traders, with a turnover of up to $50 million.
  • Maximum total size of loans of $250,000 per borrower.
  • Loans will be up to three years, with an initial six month repayment holiday.
  • Unsecured finance, meaning that borrowers will not have to provide an asset as security for the loan.

SME Loan Scheme

For more detailed information on the Coronavirus SME Guarantee Scheme:


Participating Lenders

Federal Government



Participating Lenders

SME's with loans of up to $10M

Bank loan deferral for SME's

To be eligible, you must have less than $10 million total debt to all credit providers. You need to be current, and not in arrears as of 1 January 2020. It does not matter how many people you employ. Some banks are applying these criteria flexibly, so if you fall outside please contact your bank to discuss your situation.


Supporting the flow of credit


Australian Banking Association


Find out how your bank can help:



Australian Banking Association

Directors of companies that may become insolvent

Temporary relief for distressed businesses

The Government will temporarily increase the:

  • threshold at which creditors can issue a statutory demand on a company from $2,000 to $20,000;
  • threshold at which creditors can initiate bankruptcy proceedings from $5,000 to $20,000; and
  • time companies have to respond to statutory demands from 21 days to 6 months.

The legislation containing these measures was enacted on 24 March 2020. The temporary relief will operate for a six-month period starting on 25 March 2020 (being the day after Royal Assent was granted).

Federal Government


Foreign Investors

Changes to foreign investment framework

On Sunday 29 March 2020, the Treasurer announced two temporary changes to Australia’s foreign investment framework: all proposed foreign investments subject to the Foreign Acquisitions and Takeovers Act 1975 (the Act) would require approval, regardless of value; and to ensure sufficient time for screening applications, the FIRB would work with existing and new applicants to extend timeframes for reviewing applications from 30 days to up to six months.

Businesses & tax

Income tax deferral

GST deferral

PAYG variance

Remission of penalties

R&D lodgement deferral

Income tax - The ATO may allow businesses to defer income tax payments by up to 6 months. 

GST - the ATO is allowing impacted businesses that are currently on a quarterly reporting cycle to opt into monthly GST reoprting for faster access to GST refunds.

PAYG variance - The ATO is allowing affected businesses to vary PAYG instalment amounts. Businesses that vary their PAYG instalment to zero can also claim a refund for any instalments made for the September 2019 and December 2019 quarters. It's important to contact the ATO to get clarification.

Remission of penalties - the ATO may consider remitting any interest and penalties that have been applied to tax liabilities. Contact the ATO to discuss.

In all above cases you should contact the ATO to discuss options.

R&D lodgement - the Government has deferred lodgement dates for applications. Applications for the 1 Jul 2018 - 30 Jun 2019 will be accepted up to 30 Sep 2020.


Contact the ATO on 1800 806 218 if your business is impacted by COVID-19 and discuss it has affected your business, income, cash flow etc. 




JobKeeper payment

COVID-19 supplement (Income Support)

Partner income threshold increase

Early release of superannuation

The Australian Government is providing financial assistance to Australians to support them through the Coronavirus. This assistance includes income support payments, payments to support households and temporary early releases of superannuation.

Applicants are being encouraged to claim online or by phone.

For eligible recipients, an alternative to registering directly with Centrelink, is the ability to log onto their myGov account which has a button that says 'intent to claim'. This sends personal details directly to Centrelink.

For more information of the Australian Government’s Coronavirus financial assistance visit servicesaustralia.gov.au and ato.gov.au and dva.gov.au and dss.gov.au.

State Governments Support

Learn about the support packages and grants delivered by your state or territory.

New South Wales

COVID-19: What you need to know

COVID-19 help for small businesses

Payroll tax relief measures for New South Wales businesses impacted by COVID-19

NSW Government offers $440 million land tax break to support tenants and landlords


Coronavirus (COVID-19) business support

Funding for eligible Victorian businesses affected by COVID-19

Tax relief measures for eligible Victorian businesses impacted by COVID-19

Supporting Tenants and Landlords through Coronavirus


Queensland business and industry support for those affected by COVID-19

Low interest loans of up to $250,000 for carry on finance with an initial 12-month interest free period for businesses to retain staff

Support for landlords and tenants

Western Australia

COVID-19 coronavirus

Support for small business dealing with coronavirus

WA Government small business stimulus/relief package

Payroll tax measures for eligible Western Australian businesses impacted by the coronavirus

New laws to provide support for commercial and residential tenants and landlords

South Australia

COVID-19 business information and support

Support for businesses, jobs and the community impacted by COVID-19

Rental advice due to COVID-19


COVID-19 Government info for businesses

COVID-19 Business support packages

Commercial tenancy - Changes to commercial tenancies during COVID-19

Residential tenancy - Changes to residential tenancies in Tasmania during COVID-19

Australian Capital Territory


COVID-19 Economic Survival Package - supporting local businesses and the economy

Northern Territory

Coronavirus (COVID-19)

Business recovery - support for businesses

Additional Links and Resources:

Reserve Bank of Australia

The Reserve Bank has put in place a comprehensive package to lower funding costs and support the supply of credit to the economy.

More information: How the Reserve Bank is Supporting the Economy

Australian Taxation Office

Here are some information about ATO measures and tailored support during COVID-19.

Support for businesses and employers

Find out what support is available, including boosting cash flow, instant asset write-off, the backing business incentive and JobKeeper payments for your employees.

Support for individuals and employees

Find out what support is available, including JobKeeper payments, early release of superannuation and minimum drawdown rate options.

Additional support options

Find out about additional support options that can help during this time, including information on lodgment and payment, varying PAYG Instalments or claiming GST credits.

Fact sheets for landlords and tenants

Navigating this COVID-19 environment is challenging but it's critical to take advantage of any resources and support available. Ensure you are tracking any COVID expenses to put yourself in the best position to apply for current or future support. We've also shared some great resources from CPA Australia, including a Disaster Recovery Kit and a number of other resources to support you during this time.

Simon Bedard

Simon Bedard

CEO and Founder, Exit Advisory Group

If you would prefer to reach out directly, I would love to start a conversation. Connect with me and send me a message on Linkedin, or get in touch any of the ways below. Old fashion phone calls are also welcomed!



1300 133 540

Exit Planning | Maximising Company Value | Business Sales

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