Business guide to Coronavirus

Financial support for businesses

In extremely trying times for small business owners, access to government funding support is critical and often tricky to navigate and access. Here is a simple guide to the support on offer to assist eligible businesses. 


For sole traders without employees

Funding option 1

What: The instant asset write-off threshold has been increased from $30,000 to $150,000 

Who: There’s expanded access to include businesses with an aggregated annual turnover of less than $500 million (up from $50 million). 

When: This applies from 12 March 2020 until 30 June 2020, for new or second‑hand assets first used or installed ready for use in this timeframe.

How this can help: Allows a business to invest in eligible assets like business equipment and benefit from immediate tax deductions in FY19/20.

Get started: For more information visit:

Funding option 2

What: A time limited 15-month investment incentive to support business investment and economic growth over the short term, by accelerating depreciation deductions. 

Who: Businesses with a turnover of less than $500 million will be able to deduct 50% of the cost of an eligible asset on installation, with existing depreciation rules applying to the balance of the asset cost.

When: This applies to eligible assets acquired from 12 March 2020 and first used or installed by 30 June 2021.

How this can help: This can help improve business cashflow by lowering the after tax cost of eligible assets (e.g. equipment) purchased by the business.

Get started: For more information visit

Funding option 3

What: The Australian Tax Office (ATO) is providing relief for some tax obligations.

Who: For businesses affected by the Coronavirus outbreak, on a case-by-case basis.

When: Immediately.

How this can help: If businesses are experiencing difficulties with tax obligations because of COVID-19, they may be eligible for help tailored to their circumstances.

Get started: Contact the ATO’s Emergency Support Infoline for businesses on 1800 806 218 for more information or to request this help.

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For business with employees

Funding option 1

What: Boosting Cashflow for Employers payment of up to $25,000 back to business, with a minimum payment of $2,000 for eligible small and medium businesses that employ staff. The payment will be tax free.

Who: Small and medium business entities with aggregated annual turnover under $50 million and that employ workers will be eligible. Eligibility will generally be based on prior year turnover.

When: Will be applied for a limited number of activity statement lodgements. The ATO will deliver the payment as a credit to the business upon lodgement of their activity statements. Where this places the business in a refund position, the ATO will deliver the refund within 14 days.

How this can help: The payment will be delivered by the Australian Taxation Office (ATO) as a credit in the activity statement system from 28 April 2020 upon businesses lodging eligible upcoming activity statements.

Eligible businesses that withhold tax to the ATO on their employees’ salary and wages will receive a payment equal to 50 per cent of the amount withheld, up to a maximum payment of $25,000.

Eligible businesses that pay salary and wages will receive a minimum payment of $2,000, even if they are not required to withhold tax.

Get started: For more information visit:

Funding option 2

What: An apprentice or trainee wage subsidy of 50% of their wage paid from 1 January 2020 to 30 September 2020. Employers will be reimbursed up to a maximum of $21,000, per eligible apprentice or trainee ($7,000 per quarter).

Who: Small businesses employing fewer than 20 fulltime employees who retain an apprentice or trainee. 

Employers of any size and Group Training Organisations that reengage an eligible out of trade apprentice or trainee will be eligible for the subsidy. The apprentice or trainee must have been in training with a small business as at 1 March 2020.

When: Employers can register for the subsidy from early April 2020. Final claims for payment must be lodged by 31 December 2020.

Employers will be able to access the subsidy after an eligibility assessment is undertaken by an Australian Apprenticeship Support Network (AASN) provider. 

How can this help: This can provide cashflow support to businesses as well as continuance of employment for apprentices and trainees.

Get started: Eligibility assessment criteria are still yet to be confirmed (as at 3:30pm 20 March) but for help and support you can call Apprenticeship Support Australia on 1300 363 831  Monday to Friday 8:30am – 5:00pm (AEST). Apprenticeship Support Australia an Australian Apprenticeship Support Network (AASN) provider.

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