Specialist tax advisory firm Greenwoods & Herbert Smith Freehills has now partnered with law firm Herbert Smith Freehills to launch a free online app, in a bid to help businesses identify their eligibility for the JobKeeper payment scheme.
According to the firms, the app will take employers through a series of general and technical questions, and provide preliminary guidance on whether employers are eligible for the scheme and what their next steps are.
Herbert Smith Freehills’ Australian head of legal operations, Libby Jarvis, said both firms identified the need for the app after speaking with a number of clients who were struggling to determine whether their business could benefit from the scheme.
“We had been getting a significant number of questions from our clients in relation to the JobKeeper payment scheme, so together with Greenwoods, we set about creating a user-friendly tool which allows employers to access the combined expertise of our firms, at any time,” Ms Jarvis said.
“The app will help employers navigate the regulatory nuances of the JobKeeper scheme and determine their eligibility. For more complex questions or legal requirements, our teams are here to support clients with detailed, tailored advice.”
Eligibility has been a big concern for employers, with a new Australian Bureau of Statistics survey revealing that around one out of five businesses had not registered for the scheme because they believed their business was ineligible.
Greenwoods & Herbert Smith Freehills partner Toby Eggleston, who helped develop the app, said that while the $130 billion JobKeeper scheme was designed to support individuals and businesses through the COVID-19 crisis, it was not a straightforward experience for employers.
“The rules around the JobKeeper payment scheme can be complicated, and guidance about the scheme is scattered across various platforms,” Mr Eggleston said.
“We hope that by bringing this information together in one place and equipping employers with details on a range of topics, the app will help Australian businesses navigate this difficult time.”
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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.