Changes to your employment guide

The COVID-19 pandemic has caused major disruption in employment Australia-wide.

Many employees, sole traders, and employers across the public, private and non-profit sectors are adapting to new ways of working and navigating changes in employment circumstances. For some of us this may mean a decrease or loss of income and the need to access government support.

Changes to your employment can be stressful, particularly when they’re due to circumstances beyond your control. These changes may also impact you financially. Use this guide to help you navigate your options in terms of the assistance you can get.

This guide provides general information only on things to consider when your employment circumstances change. It doesn’t replace the need for professional legal and/or financial advice.

My hours/duties have changed

I've been stood down

My role was made redundant

I resigned

My employment was terminated

My employer went bankrupt / into liquidation

I’m retiring

  • Check your entitlements for an Early Retirement scheme on the Australian Taxation Office website.

  • If you want to access your super you will need to meet a condition of release. General information is available on the Australian Taxation Office website or contact your super fund to find out about your options.

  • For more detail on what you can do to plan for your retirement, you can find more on our Retirement Hub.

My income has stopped

  • If your super account is inactive and your balance falls below $6,000 it may be rolled over to the Australian Taxation Office.

    Read more about ATO-held super on their website.

What do I do about my life insurance?

  • Leaving your employment may mean that any life insurance policies held inside superannuation could be impacted.

    You may want to ensure you continue to have the correct levels of cover for you and your family. 

    Talk with your super fund to see what your options may be.

I’m experiencing financial hardship because of COVID-19. What government support could I get?

  • If you need assistance, Centrelink can advise you on any government benefits you may be entitled to access. Some benefits have waiting periods, which means it’s important to contact them as soon as you lose your job. Find out more at centrelink.gov.au.

    • Temporary early release of super to eligible individuals: Apply via myGov for $10,000 this financial year, and $10,000 next financial year.

This is a guide only and does not constitute legal or financial advice. Please ensure you refer to your own Human Resources division of your employment for information specific to your circumstances. You should also seek your own legal and financial advice.

Other references include: 

Australian Taxation Office

Fair Work Ombudsman

Fair Entitlements Guarantee (FEG)

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This information is prepared by BT – a part of Westpac Banking Corporation Westpac Banking Corporation ABN 33 007 457 141 (Westpac or Westpac Group). Information current as at 20 May 2020.

This information is only general and educational in nature. It does not take into account your personal objectives, financial situation or needs and so you should consider its appropriateness, having regard to these factors before acting on it.

This document may contain material provided by third parties derived from sources believed to be accurate at its issue date. While such material is published with necessary permission, the Westpac Group accepts no responsibility for the accuracy or completeness of, nor does it endorse any such third-party material. To the maximum extent permitted by law, we intend by this notice to exclude liability for this third-party material.

BT cannot give tax advice. Any tax considerations outlined in this document are general statements, based on an interpretation of current tax laws, and do not constitute tax advice. As such, you should not place reliance on any such taxation considerations as a basis for making your decision.