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Each Australian State and Territory has implemented COVID-19 response measures.

A summary of some of the measures is provided below which include payroll taxes, loan funding, land tax relief and a framework for landlord/tenant rent arrangements. It is important to note there is additional detail (in some cases, significant), so please seek appropriate advice.

New South Wales

  • A waiver of payroll tax for three-months for businesses with payrolls up to $10m.
  • The next round of NSW payroll tax cuts will be brought forward by raising the threshold limit to $1m in 2020-21.
  • A deferral of payroll tax payments for all businesses for six months.
  • Businesses with payrolls of $10m or less are eligible for 25% reduction in annual liabilities for 2019-20 when completing their annual reconciliation.
  • Landlords that provide tenants impacted by coronavirus with rent relief will be eligible for a reduction in land tax. This reduction will be the lesser of the amount of rent reduction provided to a tenant for any period between 1 April, 2020, and 30 September, 2020, or 25% of the land tax otherwise payable.


  • A six-month payroll tax deferral will be extended to all businesses across the state, and refund of two months’ worth of payroll tax.
  • Landlords may be eligible for a land tax rebate, reducing land tax liabilities by 25% for eligible properties for the 2019-20 assessment year.
  • A three-month deferral of land tax liabilities for the 2020-21 assessment year.
  • A waiver of the 2% land tax foreign surcharge for foreign entities for the 2019-20 assessment year.
  • A waiver of State land rent for six months.


  • If a landlord provides tenants impacted by COVID-19 with rent relief, they will be eligible for a 25% discount on their land tax, while any remaining land tax can be deferred until March 2021.
  • Businesses with annual taxable wages up to $3m will have their payroll tax for the 2019-20 financial year waived.

Western Australia

  • Small businesses that pay payroll tax will receive a one-off grant of $17,500.
  • The $1m payroll tax threshold brought forward six months to July 1 2020.
  • Payroll tax payments to be deferred until 21 July, 2020, for COVID-19 impacted businesses.
  • Land tax relief grant of 25% for the 2019-20 bill for commercial landlords that provide rent relief to small businesses that have suffered a 30% reduction in turnover due to COVID-19.

South Australia

  • 25% reduction on 2019-20 land tax liability that is only eligible for landlords who pass on the reduction as rent reduction to their tenants.
  • Deferral of the third and fourth instalment for 2019-20 land tax liabilities.
  • 6-month payroll tax waiver if Australian grouped wages <$4m.
  • A 6-month payroll tax deferral if Australian grouped wages >$4m.


  • Small and medium businesses with an annual payroll of up to $5m in Australian wages can apply for a waiver of payroll tax payments for the three months up to June 30 2020.
  • A one-year payroll tax rebate for new employees under 24, employed between April 1 and December 31.
  • One-off $5,000 grants for businesses that hire an apprentice or trainee.
  • Heavy vehicles over 4.5 tonnes will have the registration and road component of motor tax waived for 12 months.



This publication has been carefully prepared, but it has been written in general terms and should be seen as broad guidance only. The publication cannot be relied upon to cover specific situations and you should not act, or refrain from acting, upon the information contained therein without obtaining specific professional advice. Please contact the BDO member firms in Australia to discuss these matters in the context of your particular circumstances. BDO Australia Ltd and each BDO member firm in Australia, their partners and/or directors, employees and agents do not accept or assume any liability or duty of care for any loss arising from any action taken or not taken by anyone in reliance on the information in this publication or for any decision based on it. BDO Services Pty Ltd ABN 45 134 242 434 is a member of a national association of independent entities which are all members of BDO Australia Ltd ABN 77 050 110 275, an Australian company limited by guarantee.

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