News - Australian Government Second Stimulus - Key Measures

We are weathering the storm with our clients and the Cairns community through these turbulent times by providing as much helpful information as possible and rapidly adjusting to assist with practical and legal issues arising from this novel situation. 

Takeaways from the Government’s second stimulus package announced on 22 March 2020:

  • Insolvency and bankruptcy laws relaxed for 6 months:  minimum amount for creditor’s statutory demands and bankruptcy notices increased to $20,000 and time frames for responses extended to 6 months (from 21 days).
  • Debtors declaring their intention to enter voluntary bankruptcy will be given an extension to the protection period (from 21 days to 6 months) during which unsecured creditors cannot take further action to recover debts.
  • Directors will be relieved from personal liability for insolvent trading in the ordinary course of a company’s business for 6 months (criminal penalties still apply for dishonesty/fraud).
  • Unsecured loans for SME’s of up to $250,000 over a 3 year period, with no repayments for 6 months and with lenders receiving a 6 month exemption from responsible lending obligations to hasten access to credit.
  • SMEs and NFPs may receive cash payments of $20,000 to $100,000. The initial package has been enhanced to increase the wages withheld threshold to 100% with limits increased and additional payments introduced.
  • Early access to super for individuals affected: $10,000 tax free this financial year and next financial year. 
  • Two $750 tax free payments to recipients of particular income support (they do not count as income).
  • An additional $550 per fortnight for 6 months for recipients of particular income support, effectively doubling job seekers’ income support payments, with accelerated processing.

For further information including eligibility requirements, see the link below and view the Fact Sheets therein. 

https://treasury.gov.au/coronavirus

Should you require legal assistance, we are here to help.

Written by Kim Cousins, Associate, Commercial Law Division

email/kim)(oreillystevens.com