(Corona Virus)

Updates & Resources

Everything you need to know.
Coutts is with you.
The newest COVID-19 relief payments for individuals and businesses: are you eligible?

On 13 July 2021, the NSW Government announced further economic support packages for businesses and individuals suffering from the current COVID-19 lockdown. If your business or not-for-profit organisation has been impacted by the ongoing restrictions, you may be eligible to apply for the new grants from 19 July 2021.

Learn more here.

Major New COVID-19 Support Package to Help Tens of Thousands of Businesses Across NSW

The NSW Government today announced a major new grants package and changes to the Dine & Discover program to help tens of thousands of small businesses and people across NSW impacted by the current COVID-19 restrictions.

Continue reading here.

The Financial Relief Available to NSW Businesses

Several lenders, including all four major banks, have offered loan relief to NSW businesses impacted by the two-week lockdown.

On Saturday (26 June), the NSW government announced that everyone who has been in Greater Sydney for any reason since Monday, 21 June 2021 – including the Blue Mountains, Central Coast, Wollongong and Shellharbour – would need to enter a 14-day lockdown period.

Find out more here.

Federal Government extends Home Builder Program for another 3 months, but at a lower rate
  • The Home Builder program, due to finish at the end of the year, will be extended until March 31
  • Contracts signed between January and March next year will attract a lower rate of $15,000
  • People will be given more time to start construction
  • Price caps in NSW will be lifted to $950,000 and Victoria will be lifted to $850,000

For more info, please click here.

Urgent Update – JobKeeper and JobSeeker to continue to March 2021!

Today, 21st of July 2020, the PM and Treasurer have announced that the JobKeeper and JobSeeker schemes will be extended to March 2021.

A review into JobKeeper found that the scheme “met its objectives, was well targeted and prevented widespread business closures and job losses.” Therefore a decision has been made to extend the scheme to March 2021.

The ongoing scheme however will now have two payment tiers and tougher eligibility requirements. Businesses will also have more frequent turnover-reporting requirements to remain eligible for the payments.

In terms of Jobseeker, “That payment will continue at that level until the end of September, then it will be lowered for the six month extension,” Cormann explained.

If you need any employment advice during Covid19, whether you are an employee or an employer we can help guide and support you through it. Please do not hesitate to contact us today!


To our Valued Clients:

After serious consideration and to assist in the protection of our team, our families and you our valued clients, we have implemented changes to our attendance protocols.
Until further notice attendance at our office will be by appointment only. Please contact us on 1300 Coutts (1300 268 887) to schedule an appointment.

If you are sick, or if you have returned from overseas and are required to self-isolate for a period of 14 days, we respectfully request that you do not attend our office and instead contact us to reschedule or arrange a phone consultation.

In this webinar, Karena Nicholls and Belinda McLean discuss the employment issues arising due to the current COVID-19 lockdown measures.

Karena Nicholls from Coutts Lawyers & Conveyancers joins Sue Larsen as she hosts a panel of experts to discuss how to transition to telehealth assessments.

Karena Nicholls from Coutts Lawyers & Conveyancers joins Sue Larsen as she hosts a panel of medicolegal experts to discuss transitioning to telehealth.

Attention aged care, nursing, and health industries: Paid pandemic leave has started, for some.

This will apply for the next three months to employees covered by:

  • the Aged Care Award, and

  • the Nurses Award or the Health Professionals Award if they are employed by residential aged care providers or required to work in residential aged care facilities,

who are required to self-isolate or quarantine.

The entitlement is for up to two weeks’ paid leave on each occasion of self-isolation, unless the worker can work at home or remotely during self-isolation.  Casual employees engaged on a regular and systematic basis are included, with no minimum employment period.  For casuals, payment will be based on an average of their earnings over the previous six weeks.

with Coutts
Episode 1 – Where are we now?

In this webinar Amanda Olic, head of our Commercial Law team, talks about the legal implications of Covid19 to businesses.


Guide to the Legislative Changes in Response to Covid-19

Coutts Guide to Covid 19 Packages

Government Gazette of the State of New South Wales


Dear valued clients, referral and networking partners,

In line with the NSW Premier’s guidelines regarding a state-wide lock down of non-essential services, our physical offices will be moving towards shutting down in the near future and we will keep you updated as the government makes further announcements.

Our staff will be moving towards working from home where possible HOWEVER we will remain operational during this time. During this time, all our clients and referral partners will still have access to staff during business hours.

Contact numbers for all staff can be found by clicking here

One thing remains constant – and that is the commitment Coutts has to continuing to effectively deliver our professional services to you. Should you, your friends or family have any general concerns or need assistance, we’re only a phone call 1300 268 887 or email away. We thank you for your continued support as we continue to support you.

Kind regards,

Adriana Care
Managing Partner.

Karena Nicholls
Q&A with Karena Nicholls (Partner) our injury compensation & employment specialist

Section 524 of the Fair Work Act 2009 enables an Employer to stand down employees in certain circumstances:-

(a)    Industrial Action (other than that arranged by the Employer);

(b)    Breakdown of machinery or equipment, if the employer cannot reasonably be held responsible;

(c)     A stoppage of work for any cause which the employer cannot reasonably be held responsible.

When an employee cannot be usefully employed because of one of the circumstances listed in (1) above. Usefully employed means that an employer is able to obtain some benefit or value of work that could be performed by an employee then the employer would not be able to stand down the employee.

No, the Employer is not required to make payments to the employee in that period.

Yes, an employee will continue to accrue entitlements under the National Employment Standards as well as any entitlement to public holidays.

No, an Employer cannot force you but this may result in a stand down or a redundancy if the business structure needs to change.

(a)    That the business no longer require the person’s job to be performed by anyone because of changes in operational requirements.

(b)    The business must consult with any employees who are covered by an modern award or enterprise agreement (as per the relevant consultation provision);

(c)     It must not have been reasonable in the circumstances for the person to be redeployed with the business or an associated entity.

(a)    Redundancy pay as calculated on the time the employee has been employed;

(b)    Notice

(c)     Any accrued annual leave and Long Service Leave.

Your employer should consult you.

You need to check the terms of the Agreement or Contract as it may have terms in relation to stand down and seek advice.

No. An employee is not taken to be stood down during a period when the employee is taking paid or unpaid leave that is authorised by the employer; or is otherwise authorised to be absent from his or her employment.

No, you are protected under the Workers Compensation Act 1987. However, after 26 weeks an Employer can terminate your employment if you are unable to return to pre injury employment. Your weekly entitlements should continue through the Insurer, if eligible.

1.       Contact your suppliers and discuss options

2.       Contact your Landlord and discuss options

3.       Look at your Employee entitlements and assess your position

Disclaimer: This is general advice, if you require advice for your circumstances please contact Karena Nicholls, Partner, Injury &Employment Division.

Banks: Home loan financial hardship contact information

Below are the contact phone numbers and website links for a range of lenders.

Please anticipate longer wait times so it may be better to lodge a request via the website as the preferred method.

1800 252 845 or this link

13 30 95 or this link

1800 701 599 or this link

1800 067 497 or this link

St George 
1300 303 110 or this link

1300 787 144 or this link

13 30 30 or this link

1800 225 223 or this link

1300 349 166 or this link

ME Bank 
13 15 63 or this link

COVID-19 (Coronavirus) Government advice & resources:
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