The latest round of lockdowns have been the toughest yet for many small and medium-sized businesses and individuals around Australia. In order to provide some much-needed support to those in Victoria, the Victorian Government has announced the Small Business COVID Hardship Fund.
What is the Victorian Government’s Small Business COVID Hardship Fund?
Through the Small Business COVID Hardship Fund, the Victorian Government will assist eligible businesses that have experienced a reduction in turnover of at least 70% with tax free grants of $10,000.
To receive the Small Business COVID Hardship Fund, businesses must not have been eligible for any prior grants between 27 May and August 2021 including:
- Business Costs Assistance Program Round Two
- Business Costs Assistance Program Round Two Extension
- Licensed Hospitality Venue Fund 2021
- Licensed Hospitality Venue Fund 2021 – July Extension
- Alpine Resorts Support Program
- Victorian Events Support Package, comprising of:
- Sustainable Events Business Program
- Impacted Public Events Support Program
- Independent Cinema Support Program
- Live Performance Support Program (Presenters)
- Live Performance Support Program (Suppliers)
What is the Eligibility Criteria for the Small Business COVID Hardship Fund?
To be eligible to receive funding, businesses must:
- Be located within Victoria
- Have experienced a reduction in turnover of at least 70% for a minimum consecutive two-week period (comparable to a benchmark period in 2019) as a direct result of COVID-19 restrictions since 27 May 2021
- Be registered for GST
- Hold an ABN
- Have annual payroll in Victoria of up to $10million in FY 2020
Non-employing businesses are eligible to receive funding if they meet the above criteria.
Along with meeting the above criteria, in order to receive the Small Business COVID Hardship Fund, employing businesses are also required to:
- Be registered with WorkSafe Vic
- Attest that the business is supporting its workers to access leave entitlements or working from home where possible
How Do You Apply for the Small Business COVID Hardship Fund?
Applications are now open and will close at 11:59pm 10 September 2021, or once program funds are exhausted – whichever occurs first.
Business owners who wish to apply for the grant directly must have the application verified by a qualified agent using this template. The individual making the application is required to provide ID in the form of one of the following:
- Drivers License
- Medicare Card
If you have any further queries, or would like assistance in preparing your application, get in touch with our Melbourne-based BlueRock accountants today.