Not-for-profit Law
Legal help for community organisations

COVID-19 response

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Justice Connect has a range of initiatives to respond to COVID-19 issues. We’re providing legal help to people and community organisations affected by the pandemic. 

We have free resources and webinars on issues not-for-profits are facing, including managing contractual obligations, holding meetings and navigating employment challenges.

If these don’t answer your specific question, please contact us.

June 2020 - We updated our briefing note on some of the most pressing issues COVID-19 poses for not-for-profits, including employment, contracts and insurance. With thanks to Clayton Utz for assistance with this update. 

August 2020 - Joint Policy Statement: Addressing the pandemic insurance gap for volunteers 

We are calling on all Australian governments to have the back’ of Australia’s volunteer workforce in the COVID-19 crisis by overcoming the pandemic insurance gap for volunteers. We have published a Joint Policy Statement with Volunteering Australia outlining our recommendations. 

Government support

The Federal Government's economic response to COVID-19. 
The Government has extended the JobKeeper Payment until 28 March 2021. It is targeting support to those businesses including not-for-profits who continue to be significantly impacted by COVID-19.
 
The JobKeeper payment is administered by the Australian Taxation Office (ATO). View the full list of COVID-19 support measures on the ATO website. The ATO has also published a list of FAQs for taxpayers and launched a new webpage to support not-for-profits during the pandemic. 

The ATO published a fact sheet that answers the question 'Can charities disregard NDIS payments received?'. You can download the pdf version of the fact sheet below.

Also, see our FAQ 'how can I make sure I retain my employees' on our COVID-19 governance webpage for related information.
 
State and territory governments have also announced economic responses to COVID-19:

Victoria - Responding to COVID-19dealing with rent in response to COVID-19COVID-19 and your rightsVictorian government business support fund

Volunteers in Victoria - eligible volunteers in Victoria have access to the COVID-19 Worker Support Payment. This is a one-off $1,500 payment to financially support Victorian workers who have been instructed to self-isolate or quarantine at home because they have either been diagnosed with COVID-19 or have been identified as a close contact of a confirmed case. For more information, see our news item

Ban on evictions and rental increases extended - The Victorian government has extended the ban on evictions and rental increases to the end of the year. The extension includes residential and commercial tenancies until 31 December, except in specific circumstances. For more information, see our news item. 

Government support for disability care workers - Staff working across sites present one of the highest risks for introducing the virus into disability residential services, so the Victorian and Commonwealth Governments will work together to reduce the movement of staff between sites while supporting disability care workers.  A $15 million Worker Mobility Reduction Payment scheme to compensate disability residential service providers for delivering a 'one worker-two sites' cap will be established. The funding will cover the lost hours of work for staff as well the higher cost of sourcing additional workers. The scheme will run until December 2020. For more information, see the media release from the Office of the Premier.  

South AustraliaCOVID-19 business information and supportrental advice

Western Australia - Department of the premier and cabinet COVID-19 community advice, COVID-19 consumer protection

Northern Territory - COVID-19 business support

Queensland - COVID-19 business support, support for commercial landlords, support for commercial tenants, The Residential Rental Hub

New South Wales - COVID-19 business support, property moratorium 

Tasmania - Responding to COVID-19, emergency business support packagescommercial tenants affected by COVID-19 emergency

Other resources

Financial advisor Grant Thornton has also published commentary on government economic measures in response to COVID-19. Their post on the JobKeeper subsidy covers how to determine turnover for JobKeeper purposes. 

Social Ventures Australia has published a guide on COVID-19 government support to charities and not-for-profits (as at 12 August 2020)

Our Community has launched a campaign 'save our sector', giving the not-for-profit sector access to their library of capacity building resources to help organisations stay afloat until we get to the other side of COVID-19. You can access their list of trusted sources to help not-for-profits with COVID-19 here.

Our other resources

We have many other free resources that will be relevant to you. Access our complete library of resources on these subjects here: