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Wage Subsidy Audits for COVID-19 - Giles & Liew Chartered Accountants

COVID-19 Wage Subsidy Audits

May 12, 2020

COVID-19 Wage Subsidy Audits

As more businesses prepare to reopen under Alert Level 2 and others look forward to even greater flexibility in business operations, the spotlight is being shone on those businesses that have received the Wage Subsidy in error.  With the notable ease that business owners were able to apply for and then receive the 12-week payout, there will be some businesses that did not meet the accompanying declaration at the time of application or do not meet the criteria and accordingly, these businesses are required to repay any amount received in error.  Some business owners have already sought to voluntarily return the subsidy, with others taking a “wait and see” approach.  There have been a number of audits already performed where it was concluded that some businesses must repay the wage subsidy.

In light of these audits being conducted, while not every business will be audited and we note that these audits may be selected at random, we suggest it is prudent that your business has the supporting documentation in place to prove that you met the Wage Subsidy declaration at the time of application.

In order to ensure your business will stand the scrutiny of a Government audit, there are set criteria that your business must have met, which will differ depending on whether you applied for the Subsidy before 4pm on the 27th of March 2020 or after.  Refer to the links below for the declaration criteria that applies to you:

Declaration before 4pm on 27th March 2020:

Declaration on or after 4pm on 27th March 2020:

Whether your business will be selected to be audited or not is an unknown however ensuring that you have all your documentation in order now in preparation for such an event will give you comfort over whether you will be able to keep the Wage Subsidy and enable you to make business decisions in light of such.  Should you be audited, getting together this information now will help to make the audit a straightforward procedure for your business.

As your trusted Business Advisors, we can help you collate the documentation you need to determine your eligibility for the Wage Subsidy and our team welcomes a discussion to get this process underway so that we can help you create some sense of clarity amidst all the uncertainty we are currently facing.


About Rohit Prasad

Rohit Prasad Director - Giles & Liew Chartered AccountantsRohit Prasad
CA qualified, Senior Business Advisory Manager Rohit has extensive experience across a variety of accounting and finance functions. He has expertise in farm accounting and in working with clients with investment portfolios and international tax issues. Rohit is also a wealth of knowledge in the area of IT, combining both his accounting and IT experience to deliver robust solutions at both a practice level internally and externally to clients.

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