The federal government unveiled the next phase of income support measures on Tuesday, with JobKeeper and the JobSeeker boost to continue, but at a reduced rate.
JobKeeper would be reduced to $1,200 per fortnight for full-timers, and $750 for part-timers or eligible casuals working less than 20 hours per week. This rate will run from 28 September to 31 December.
This would reduce again for the March quarter next year, with full-timers to receive $1,000 per fortnight and those who work less than 20 hours per week receiving $650.
JobSeeker will also continue to be supplemented by a booster, but to the tune of $250 rather than $550 lasting until December.
But while currently those who receive JobKeeper are not allowed to claim JobSeeker as the income from JobKeeper was too high, the new phase will see some Aussies eligible to double-dip on both payments.
Here’s how it works
JobSeeker is available to anyone earning less than $1,256 in fortnightly income, which is more than what some full-timers or part-timers will be getting under the new JobKeeper scheme.
According to the Grattan Institute, full-timers receiving $1,200 per fortnight via JobKeeper could be able to claim $284 worth of JobSeeker between October and December.
That will take their gross income to $1,484 – just $16 less than it was on the previous JobKeeper rate.
Part-timers receiving $750 per fortnight could be eligible for $554 worth of JobSeeker, meaning their gross income will be just $196 less than it was on the previous JobKeeper rate.
Treasury confirmed to Yahoo Finance that the ‘double-dip’ was legitimate.
“Employees receiving the JobKeeper Payment may be eligible for other government assistance, including JobSeeker, subject to the eligibility requirements for those payments,” said a Treasury spokesperson.
“Social Security recipients are required to provide up to date details of their income to Services Australia, and JobKeeper payments should be reported as part of this process.”
To qualify for the JobSeeker payment however, Australians will need to demonstrate they are actively looking for work by applying for four jobs per month from 4 August – or face having their payments cancelled.
“So if there is a job to be taken and a job that is being offered, then it is an obligation, a mutual obligation, for those who are on JobSeeker to take those jobs where they're on offer,” the Prime Minister said on Tuesday.
What about the assets test?
The assets limit is currently waived for JobSeeker claims, but the government will be re-introducing the test from 25 September.
That means single JobKeeper recipients with $5,000 in funds will have to wait one week before they can claim JobSeeker, and those with $11,500 or more will have to wait 13 weeks
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