Compliance Update – July 2020

The new financial year has brought new rates from the ATO, and the Federal Government and the FWC have announced changes that may impact your HR and payroll.

Increases to parental leave flexibility in Australia
Parents of children born or adopted on or after 1 Jul 2020 will have more flexibility in how they receive their Government paid parental leave entitlements. For the first 12 week period of paid parental leave, Services Australia makes payment to the employer who passes the payment to the employee. For the 30 Flexible Paid Parental Leave days, the employee will receive payment from Services Australia directly.

The high income threshold announced
The Fair Work Commission have released updates for the new financial year, which include an updated high income threshold and compensation limit for dismissals.

From 1 July 2020:

  • the high income threshold will increase from $148,700 to $153,600
  • the compensation limit will be $76,800 for dismissals occurring on or after 1 July 2020.

New cents per kilometre from 1 July 2020
The Commissioner of taxation has determined that the rate is 72 cents per kilometre for the income year commencing 1 July 2020. The rate last changed in 2018, which saw the rate rise to 68 cents from 66 cents.

Unpaid pandemic leave
The Fair Work Commission has extended the option for unpaid pandemic leave in some awards. This determination relates to the Commission’s decision in April 2020 to introduce two weeks of unpaid pandemic leave and the ability to take twice as much annual leave at half pay into 99 different awards.

JobKeeper extension
On 21 July, the Government announced it is extending the JobKeeper Payment until 28 March 2021 and is targeting support to those businesses and not-for-profits which continue to be significantly impacted by the Coronavirus. From 28 September 2020, eligibility for the JobKeeper Payment will be based on actual turnover in the relevant periods, the payment will be stepped down and paid at two rates.

Paid pandemic leave for residential aged care employees
The Fair Work Commission has granted access to paid pandemic leave for residential aged care employees covered by the Aged Care, Nurses and Health Professionals Awards. The new entitlement starts from the first pay period on or after 29 July 2020, and is available for 3 months.

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