COVID-19 Quick Q and A

COVID-19 Quick Q and A Main Image


Q. What is the difference between JobKeeper and JobSeeker? Which should I apply for?

A. JobKeeper is administered by the ATO and paid to employers who then pay their employees. JobSeeker is administered by Centrelink and is a form of social security for those looking for work. 

Q. My business only started three months ago or had experienced growth over the past year and won’t show a 30% write-down in turnover - am I eligible to apply for JobSeeker? 

A. Where a business was not in operation a year earlier, or where their turnover a year earlier was not representative of their usual or average turnover, the Tax Commissioner will have discretion to consider additional information that the business can provide to establish that they have been adversely affected by the impacts of the Coronavirus

Q. What happens if my employer wants me to remain stood down?

A. You are entitled to the JobKeeper payment if you remain stood down. The JobKeeper payment applies so long as you are still employed by the business.

Q. What happens if my employer wants me to return to work?

A. If the employer has useful work for you to perform, the stand down period would end and you would resume performing your regular duties and receiving you regular pay. You must be paid the greater of the JobKeeper payment, or the amount legally payable for the work performed.

Q. Can my employer make me take leave during this period?

A. Your employer can request than an employee agrees to take paid annual leave provided that the employee retains a balance of at least two weeks. You must consider the request and must not unreasonably refuse the request.

Q. Where can I travel?

From Friday 15 May, the following is allowed:

  • public gatherings of up to 10 people;
  • food and drink premises can open, but only to seat a maximum of 10 customers at any one time – this includes cafes and restaurants, a restaurant within a registered club or pub, or a cellar door that serves food;
  • up to 5 visitors may visit another household at any one time;
  • weddings can have up to 10 guests plus the people conducting or assisting in the conduct of the service, a photographer, a videographer, and the couple;
  • indoor funerals and memorial services can have up to 20 mourners and outdoor funerals up to 30 mourners;
  • religious gatherings and places of worship can have up to 10 worshippers;
  • outdoor playground and exercise equipment can be used with caution; and
  • outdoor pools can open with restrictions.

Read FAQs on what has changed.
*Hunter (NSW) information only

Recent and upcoming changes - October 2020

News and announcements

See more COVID-19 news and media releases.

Capacity increase for entertainment venues

From Monday 28 September 2020, theatres, cinemas and concert halls across NSW will be able to increase capacity up to 50%, to a maximum of 1000. These venues also have the option of continuing to calculate capacity based on the 4 square metre rule, if that better suits their operational model.

Visitors at home

If there are more than 20 visitors at a home at any one time, every person will be held individually responsible for a breach of the public health order.


Venues can take bookings for weddings and other events to be held in the future for more people than allowed under current rules, as long as the rules that apply when the event is held are obeyed.

Up to 150 people are allowed to attend a wedding service, including at a place of public worship.

Up to 20 people in the official wedding party are permitted on the dance floor. Only these 20 people can be on the dance floor at any one time. There can be no rotation of different people.

Churches and places of public worship

If a place of public worship has multiple buildings at a single location:

  • each building can have as many people as allowed under the 4 square metre rule, up to a maximum of 100 people or 150 people for a wedding
  • each building must be designated as a separate area with its own separate external entry and exit, its own COVID-19 Safety Plan and staff and attendees should not mix across services.

Auctions and open house viewings

People attending an on-site auction or viewing a home to lease or buy the property are exempt from the 20 visitor rule and will not be counted as visitors.

Real estate agents must have a COVID-19 Safety Plan in place for viewings or inspections of on-site open homes and for public auctions. They do not need a separate plan for each individual inspection or auction.

Visitors allowed at a residence and outdoor gatherings - October 2020

Up to 20 visitors may visit another household at any one time. The total number of visitors includes adults and children. (A member of the household is not counted as a visitor.)

  • There is no daily limit to visitors to your home, so long as you don’t have more than 20 visitors at any one time.
  • If you are over 70 or have a pre-existing medical condition, you should limit the number of visitors and take care at all times.  
  • You can have guests from any household so long as it does not exceed 20 visitors in total. 
  • An overnight stay as part of a visit to someone’s house is allowed.

If there are more than 20 visitors at a home, every person will be held individually responsible for a breach of the public health order.

As the home is a high transmission area, the NSW Chief Health Officer strongly recommends a COVID-Safe precautionary approach of having no more than 10 visitors at a time. 

For more information, please visit the NSW Government webpage here.