Superannuation Guarantee (Administration) Amendment (Jobkeeper Payment) Regulations 2020 has now been registered, setting out that superannuation guarantee payments will only be required to be paid to an employee for the performance of work.
The regulations recognise that, in some cases, employees might receive an amount greater than their usual salary or wages because of the JobKeeper payment, including where the employee has been stood down or the amount that is required to be paid to the employee for the performance of work is less than $1,500 per fortnight.
The amending regulations are retrospective in nature, applying from the commencement of the JobKeeper scheme on 30 March 2020, and will affect superannuation contributions made in respect of the last two days of the first quarter of this year.
The regulations set out that employers do not need to make contributions for top-up payments to satisfy the wage condition for JobKeeper payments.
The explanatory statement of the regulations contains several examples of how the amendments will apply in practice.
For example, where an employee earns her usual wages of $1,000 per fortnight, and her employer pays an additional $500 per fortnight to meet the wage condition for JobKeeper, the additional payment of $500 is excluded from being salary or wages and is not subject to additional superannuation guarantee obligations.
However, the regulations do not apply if the salary or wages paid to an employee does not exceed the sum of the amount required to be paid for the performance of work.
The regulations also deal with salary sacrifice arrangements, and also clarifies that salary or wages of less than $450 in a calendar month will not be subject to superannuation contributions.
The amendments also stipulate that employers are not required to be entitled to a JobKeeper payment for the regulations to apply.
According to the explanatory statement, this is intended to allow the regulations to apply where an employer has a reasonable belief that it is entitled to a JobKeeper payment and has subsequently satisfied the wage condition in respect of its employees, but is ultimately not entitled to a JobKeeper payment.
You can view the amended regulations in full here.
Jotham Lian is the editor of Accountants Daily, the leading source of breaking news, analysis and insight for Australian accounting professionals.
Before joining the team in 2017, Jotham wrote for a range of national mastheads including the Sydney Morning Herald, and Channel NewsAsia.