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July changes that may affect your business

The start of a new financial year brings a range of changes that may impact on your business.

With new laws, regulations and incentives being introduced at both state and federal levels, it can be hard to keep up with all of the changes that take effect from 1 July 2019 and whether they will apply to you.

To help guide you, here is a run-down of the most significant changes likely to impact on small businesses in Western Australia.

New minimum wages

Increases to both the state and national minimum wages will come into effect from the first pay period on or after 1 July 2019.

If your business operates under the WA state industrial relations system (which covers sole traders, micro businesses, unincorporated partnerships and unincorporated trust arrangements), the WA Industrial Relations Commission has announced a 2.75 per cent increase to WA’s minimum wage, lifting it to $746.90 per week or $19.66 per hour. If you have any questions about the new state minimum wage, contact Wageline.

If your business operates under the federal industrial relations system (which covers businesses such as ‘Pty Ltd’ companies), the Fair Work Commission has announced a 3 per cent increase to all minimum rates of pay under the federal modern awards. The new national minimum wage is now $740.80 per week or $19.49 per hour. Visit the Fair Work website to read more about the increase to the national minimum wage.

Single Touch Payroll

The way you report employee payments and superannuation will change with the introduction of Single Touch Payroll (STP) for all employers from 1 July 2019. The Australian Taxation Office (ATO) has provided small businesses with a three month transition period to help you get ready for STP, so you’ll need to have implemented this new process by 30 September 2019. Find out what you need to do to prepare for STP.

Inactive low-balance superannuation accounts

If you have been an irregular payer of your own super and have an inactive low-balance account, new laws (known as the Protecting Your Superannuation Package) will require superannuation providers to report and transfer these accounts to the ATO. Read our article on changes that may affect your super for more information.

Changes to penalty rates

The third round of changes to Sunday penalty rates in retail, hospitality and pharmacy national awards will start on 1 July 2019. These changes are part of the Fair Work Commission’s transitional arrangements that will see annual reductions in penalty rates taking affect until 1 July 2020.

See our penalty rate changes made simple fact sheet for the revised penalty rates for 2019 and beyond.

Increase and extension of instant asset write-off

In case you missed it during the Federal Budget announcement, the popular instant asset write-off for small businesses (with a turnover of less than $10 million) has been increased to $30,000 and the deadline has been extended to 30 June 2020.

Before making a large purchase, remember to speak to your accountant and assess how the asset will benefit your business. For more information read the instant asset write-off explained.

Jobs and Skills WA Employer Incentive

If you employ an apprentice or new entrant trainee from 1 July 2019 onwards, you may be eligible for the Jobs and Skills WA Employer Incentive. As part of the initiative, eligible small businesses will receive help to cover the cost of employing a new apprentice or entrant trainee.

Changes proposed in the federal and state budgets

There were also a number of changes proposed in the Australian Federal Budget and Western Australian State Budget, such as a cut to the company tax rate (federal) and increases to utilities and public sector services (state).

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