Small Business Support Grant

The NSW COVID-19 Small Business Support Grant of $10,000 will be available to eligible NSW small business owners. The application form will be on the Service NSW website by 17 April.

Your business may be eligible if it:

  • operates in an industry highly impacted by the Public Health Order 2020 issued 30 March (listed below) and has suffered a decline in turnover of 75%
  • has between 1-19 employees and an annual payroll below $900,000 (the NSW payroll tax threshold)
  • has an annual turnover of more than $75,000 
  • was registered with an ABN at 1 March 2020
  • has an Australian Business Number and employs staff in NSW at 1 March 2020
  • has unavoidable fixed costs not otherwise the subject of other NSW and Commonwealth Government financial assistance measures.

Highly impacted industries

Eligible industries are those that have been subject to closure or are highly impacted by NSW Government health directions in relation to COVID-19 and include:

  • Retail trade
  • Accommodation and food service 
  • Rental, hiring and real estate services 
  • Administrative and support services 
  • Arts and recreation services.

JobKeeper payments

Small businesses that have been impacted by COVID-19 and employ workers can now register to receive the JobKeeper subsidy. This payment from the federal government is a subsidy to business owners that enables them to keep paying their workers even when revenue has declined.    

The amount of the JobKeeper subsidy is $1500 per fortnight for each eligible worker who was employed by the business on 1 March and who continues to work for the business. The subsidy amount of $1500 before tax per fortnight must be passed on to all eligible employees.  The subsidy is available to businesses for up to 6 months. The program starts on Monday 30 March 2020, and businesses will receive the first JobKeeper subsidy payments in the first week of May.  

Eligible workers include:

  • full-time and part-time workers, including those who have been stood down
  • casual workers who have been employed for at least the past 12 months
  • Australian residents, New Zealand citizens in Australia who hold a subclass 444 special category visa, and migrants who are eligible for JobSeeker Payment or Youth Allowance (Other) 
  • self-employed individuals.

Eligible businesses include companies, partnerships, trusts, sole traders, not-for-profits and charities.

Workers can only receive the JobKeeper payment from one employer.

For more information, visit JobKeeper Payment – information for employers.

Register your interest and apply online at the ATO JobKeeper payment.

Small and medium enterprise (SME) guarantee scheme 

The Australian Government will guarantee 50% of the value of eligible business loans to small and medium enterprises impacted by COVID-19. Maximum loan value is $250,000 and there will be a repayment-free period of six months. For more information, visit Supporting the flow of credit fact sheet – PDF.

Access to superannuation for sole traders

Sole traders who have suffered a decrease in income of at least 20% as a result of COVID-19 can apply to access their superannuation, to a total value of $10,000 this financial year, and another $10,000 next financial year. Withdrawals are tax free. For more information, visit Early access to superannuation – PDF.

Expanded access to JobSeeker payments

Sole traders may apply for JobSeeker benefits, including the Coronavirus supplement, in the event that their income significantly declines. Unemployment testing for sole traders has been temporarily removed to enable sole traders to continue operating their business and access government support. Income testing will apply, meaning a sole trader can earn up to $1000 per fortnight in business activities before losing access to the payment. Eligibility criteria and application forms can be accessed via myGov.

Financial institutions

The Australian Banking Association has announced banks will defer small business loan repayments for up to 6 months on business loans of up to $10 million. This support is available to landlords that opt in by contacting their banking institution directly. Landlords who organise loan repayment deferrals must agree not to terminate leases or evict current tenants for missed rental payments as a result of COVID-19. For more information, visit Australian Banking Association or contact your banking institution directly.

Facebook small business grants program

Facebook has announced a USD$100 million small business support scheme. The program includes cash grants and ad credits for up to 30,000 eligible businesses in 30 countries, including Australia. Applications are not yet open, but you can register with Facebook to receive updates.