Sound Advice Will Help You Meet The Challenges

Empowering SMEs (Issue 069)

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Greetings from ESS Small Business – Tax Ruling on JobKeeper and Research & Development.

The Australian Taxation Office has issued a draft taxation determination relating to “Notional Deductions for Research and Development Activities Subsidised by JobKeeper Payments”.

This ruling indicates that, under the “At Risk Rule”, if a business has received JobKeeper payments that were paid to employees who were involved in research and development activities, you cannot claim the wage expense that you have received as a JobKeeper payment, as a Research and Development Incentive Claim.

If the employee is 100% engaged in research and development activities, the business can claim any payment in excess of $1,500 per fortnight paid to that employee.

If the employee is working for less than an 100% of his/her time on research and development activities, a proportionate adjustment on the Research and Development Incentive Claim will need to be made up to the $1,500 per fortnight received from the JobKeeper Scheme.

If your company has been involved in a research and development project, you wish to claim the research and development incentive and you're receiving JobKeeper payments for employees involved in the research and development activities, we suggest that you consult your accountant before finalising your company’s income tax return and research and development rebate claim for 2019/20.

If you're currently receiving JobKeeper payments, have you checked your revenue receipts for the June quarter as compared to the June Quarter 2019 to determine whether there has been a reduction of 30% or more?

If you have suffered a reduction of more than 30%, you have satisfied the first test for a continuation of JobKeeper after 30th September.  Your business will also have to show a reduction of 30% or more in turnover in the September quarter, as compared to the September 2019 quarter.

In the next "COVID-19 Survival Panel" webinar for SMEs to be presented on Wednesday, 5th August 2020, Amanda Gascoigne, Amanda Gascoigne Consulting, will make a presentation “Utilising Your Accountant to Add to Your Business”.

Amanda Gascoigne is a Chartered Accountant, has been a small business owner for 21 years and had her own accountancy practice for 18 years working primarily with SME clients.

She has pivoted in recent years and now helps small and solo accountancy practice owners have better practices, better lives and also helps them have better relationships with their clients through her coaching and mentoring business exclusive for accountancy practice owners.

Amanda has indicated that one thing she realised while she was in an accountancy practice was that a large proportion of their new client's previous accountant, wasn’t proactive in selling them advisory services.  Their business model was to simply provide the compliance services that the clients asked for and were hesitant to suggest value-added services, such as tax planning, budgeting and cashflow planning and business planning.

Amanda will share with the attendees some of the types of services that SMEs could consider investing in over the next 12 months.

Peter Towers, Managing Director, ESS Small Business will make a presentation on government grants that are available to assist small businesses and medium-sized enterprises.

You can register for the free webinar on Wednesday, 5th August 2020 at 12-noon AEST by clicking here or logging onto the ESS Small Business' website > Webinars.

In the last "COVID-19 Survival Panel" webinar Matt Pinter, Managing Director of Billfolda and the Chair of the Crowdfunding Institute of Australia, commented on “Taking Opportunities in a Crisis”.

Peter Towers, Managing Director, ESS Small Business suggested that SMEs should consider upgrading their accountant to perform a 'Chief financial Officer' role so as to improve the standard of business commercial advice that the leadership team of small businesses and medium-sized enterprises would be receiving.

You can view the recording of our most recent webinar targeted at small businesses and medium-sized enterprises by clicking here.  You can view the PowerPoint slides that were utilised by Peter Towers by clicking here.

We would like to invite you to visit the ESS Small Business website > Survival in Difficult Times > Learn More where you will find details of the products ESS Small Business has developed to assist small businesses and medium-sized enterprises to gain a better understanding of strategies which will assist you to survive in your business during 2020/21.

Our suggestion is that you have a discussion with your accountant about the services that you would like them to provide for you during this year.  If your accountant is too busy to be able to consider these matters, we would invite you to contact us and we will give you an introduction to accountants who are located around Australia, who subscribe to our products and services, who can advise you on the business processes that we are suggesting.

If you are interested in accepting our invitation or wish to obtain any further information about the services that ESS Small Business or our affiliated accountants offer, please send an email to:

If you have a friend or colleague who you think might find this article interesting, we invite you to pass the article on to them.

Stay safe!  Have a great day!

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Episode 69 - Sound Advice Will Help You Meet The Challenges

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