JobKeeper update for employees aged 16 and 17

BY Australian Retailers Association
08 May 2020

From JobKeeper fortnight 4, commencing on 11 May, there are new eligibility requirements for employees that are 16 and 17 years old.

This means that 16 and 17 year old employees who identified as eligible under the original eligibility criteria for the first three JobKeeper fortnights (from 30 March until 10 May 2020) may no longer be eligible employees under the JobKeeper wages subsidy scheme from JobKeeper fortnight 4 commencing 11 May.

For 16 and 17 year olds to remain eligible employees, they need to meet the following additional criteria:

From 1 March 2020, the employee aged 16 or 17 was either:

  • Independent
  • Not in full time study

These terms are defined in the Social Security Act 1991 and further guidance can be found on the Services Australia website at

In a practical sense this means that full time students are no longer eligible employees unless they are also independent from JobKeeper fortnight 4.

However, employers can still claim for those 16 and 17 year olds who had already identified as eligible employees for JobKeeper fortnights 1 to 3 from 30 March up until 10 May 2020.

What employers need to do

Employers will need to provide their 16 and 17-year old employees with the new JobKeeper Employee nomination notice and have them complete and return it as soon as possible to confirm if they meet the new eligibility criteria and that they agree to be nominated for JobKeeper fortnight 4 commencing on 11 May.

If your 16 and 17 years old employees are no longer eligible, you will no longer identify them as an eligible employee from JobKeeper fortnight 4 which commences 11 May.

Where to go for more information

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Australian Retailers Association

Founded in 1903, the Australian Retailers Association (ARA) is Australia’s largest retail association representing Australia’s $320 billion sector, which employs more than 1.3 million people. As the retail industry’s peak representative body, the ARA works to ensure retail success by informing, protecting, advocating, educating, and saving money for its 7,500 independent and national retail members throughout Australia. For more information, visit or call 1300 368 041.

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