The Government has announced 3 key measures to help workers neutralise the negative economic effects stemming from COVID – 19.
1. Extension of Wage Subsidy
- The Government will extend the wage subsidy for another two week period beginning the period 12 August 2020 to 10 September 2020.
- For businesses to qualify, the business must have had a drop of 40% or more in a 14 day period within the time frame 12 August 2020 and 10 September 2020.
- The Decline in revenue must be related to COVID – 19
- The payments will be the same as the previous two wage subsidies ie $585.80 for people working 20 hours or more per week and $350.00 for people working less than 20 hours per week.
- Application for this wage subsidy extension will apply from 1pm on 21 August 2020 to 3 September 2020.
- MSD have advised that you cannot receive more than one COVID-19 payment from them at the same time, which means that if you received a subsidy up to and including 1 September 2020, then you only have a small window of opportunity to apply for the latest wage subsidy, -2 September to 3 September 2020.
2. Leave Support Scheme
- The government has also removed the need for businesses to show a revenue drop of 40% in order to qualify for the COVID 19 Leave Support Scheme.
- The Minister of Finance, Grant Robertson went on to say “ this means businesses with workers who have been told by health officials or their medical practitioner to self-isolate will receive the equivalent of the wage subsidy to help cover that person’s wages for the time they cannot be at work.”
- The scheme is designed to remove fears from people who record a positive result and fearing their employment could be at risk.
3. Mortgage Deferral Scheme
- The Government has agreed to extend this scheme to 31 March 2021.
- Back in March of this year, the Reserve bank made it easier for banks to offer the deferrals to customers for a period of up to six months by not treating the suspended loans as impaired loans that require the banks to hold more capital.
- The Scheme was due to finish on 27 September 2020.