1. Modern Award increase 1/11/20

Over 70 of the 122 Modern Awards will increase their minimum wages by 1.75%, effective 1/11/20.

If you have Award-covered employees you need to ensure that they are being paid to at least the new minimum wages from the first full pay period on or after 1/11/20.

Here are some of the affected Awards:

  1. Black Coal Mining Industry
  2. Building and Construction General On-site
  3. Clerks Private Sector
  4. Miscellaneous
  5. Professional Employees
  6. Storage Services and Wholesale
  7. Telecommunications Services

For the full list of the Awards changing from 1/11/20 click here:


Don’t forget that the remaining 27 Awards will increase by 1.75% from 1/2/21. I will update everyone closer to the date. 2 of these Awards are:

  1. General Retail Industry
  2. Hospitality Industry (General)

2. Superannuation

From 1/7/21, if your new employee does not elect a super fund for their super guarantee payments, you will no longer be able to simply deposit the money into your Company’s default super fund, as you have been doing.  Instead, the Federal Government will be providing software (when, we don’t know) for employers to search online to find an already existing fund that your new employee has previously used. You are then required to deposit your employee’s super money into that fund until such time as the employee elects a different fund. I know – go figure!

3. JobMaker

If you employ a person from October 7 2020 until October 6 2021 you may be entitled to a wage subsidy from the Federal Government.  A broad summary of the conditions are:

  • The new employee must be between 16 and 35 years old
  • They must have been on Job Seeker, Youth Allowance or Parent Payment for at least one of the 3 months prior to their commencement date with you
  • Hiring the person must increase your headcount and payroll (the July-September quarter of 2020 will form the basis of the assessment for both headcount and payroll)
  • Employees can be full-time, part-time, fixed-term or casual
  • Backfilling a position will therefore not attract the subsidy
  • There is no decrease in turnover test like there is with JobKeeper
  • Eligible employers will receive $100 per week for new employees aged between 30 & 35; $200 per week for new employees aged between 16 & 29
  • Employers receiving JobKeeper payments are not eligible
  • There are other eligibility rules – please contact me for more details or speak to your accountant

4. JobKeeper changes

A new eligibility test from end September 2020 until March 2021 may mean that you are no longer eligible for JobKeeper payments for your employees.

You now have to show at least a 30% decrease in turnover between July-September 2020 and the same quarter in 2019 to remain eligible.

Payments have changed too – $1,200 per fortnight for employees working 20+ hours; $750 for others.

Don’t forget that you can become eligible again if your turnover decreases by 30% or more in the October-December 2020 quarter, compared to the same quarter in 2019. In any case, if you have been receiving payments up until the end of this calendar year, you will need to reassess your eligibility in January 2021, once you know your numbers for the Oct-Dec quarter.

Payments will be further reduced in the new year – $1,000 per fortnight for employees working 20+ hours; $650 for others.

Please ensure that you seek professional advice on these complicated matters before taking action. The above should be taken as a very broad summary of some of the changes affecting employers and employees. It is not intended as, nor should it be used as, specific advice for your business.