About Business Support Fund reassessments

The first round of the Business Support Fund was launched in March 2020, supporting more than 94,000 businesses with $10,000 grants for each successful applicant.

A number of businesses, however, were found not to be eligible.

In line with recommendations made by the Victorian Ombudsman, the Department of Jobs, Precincts and Regions is reassessing relevant cases to ensure fairness for all applicants.

Business Victoria will invite first-round Business Support Fund applicants to be reassessed if:

  • your application for the first round of the Business Support Fund was returned for revision, placed back into ‘draft’, and was not completed before the deadline OR
  • you applied for Stream One of the first round of the Business Support Fund and were ineligible because of your ANZSIC industry code, and did not apply for Stream Two and were enrolled in JobKeeper OR
  • your application was assessed as ineligible because we could not verify your ASIC registration. In this case, you will be invited to be reassessed if you:
    • subsequently had the ASIC registration backdated (for example, when a previous registration had lapsed and not been renewed); or
    • applied with details that could not be verified on the ASIC register at the time, but you can now provide evidence of registration, or show your business is exempt from registration requirements.

Eligibility criteria

If your application is reassessed, you must have met all the eligibility criteria for the fund in March to June 2020. That means in that period your business must:

  • employ people
  • have a turnover of more than $75,000
  • have a payroll of less than $650,000
  • hold an Australian Business Number (ABN) and have held that ABN at 16 March 2020 (date of the State of Emergency declaration)
  • have been engaged in carrying out the operation of the business in the Australian State of Victoria on 16 March 2020
  • operate in an industry sector that has been subject to closure or highly impacted by shutdown restrictions announced by the Victorian Government OR be enrolled as eligible participants in the Commonwealth Government’s JobKeeper Payment scheme.

Next steps

  • If you fall into one of the reassessment categories, you will receive an email and/or SMS from Business Victoria with further instructions. Note: please also check your junk or spam email inbox for emails from covid19programs@ecodev.vic.gov.au.
  • If you have not received an email and/or SMS, but believe that you fall into one of the reassessment categories, please submit an expression of interest to be reassessed.
  • We’re asking businesses to wait for an email invitation to avoid creating duplicate applications, which can cause delays.

Information you will need for your reassessment

To complete your reassessment form, you will need:

  • your ABN
  • your business name as registered with ASIC/ACNC/CAV
  • your identification, for example, driver’s licence
  • if being reassessed under Stream Two, your Jobkeeper ATO receipt ID number, which can either be the receipt number on your JobKeeper Business Monthly Declaration or your Jobkeeper enrolment receipt number from the Australian Taxation Office (ATO)
  • your WorkCover Employer Number (optional)
  • a valid Business Activity Statement from the time of the program (optional).

For more information on what evidence can be provided with your reassessment, please read the frequently asked questions (FAQs) below.

What is the process for reassessment?

  1. If you meet the criteria for reassessment, we would have sent you a confirmation email and/or SMS on 27 April 2021.
  2. You will receive a second email with a personalised link to your reassessment form.
  3. Complete the reassessment form and submit your details by the deadline listed in the second email.
  4. Business Victoria will inform you of the outcome via email. In most cases, this will be done by 30 June 2021. If an application is complex or requires more information from partner agencies, such as the State Revenue Office and the Australian Taxation Office, it may take longer to process.

Frequently asked questions (FAQs)

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Business Victoria will be reconsidering applications and will be inviting applicants to be reassessed if:

  • we requested further information from you, your application was placed into draft and you did not resubmit with additional information before the fund closed
  • you applied for Stream One of the Business Support Fund and were ineligible because of your ANZSIC industry code, and did not apply for Stream Two and were enrolled in JobKeeper
  • you were assessed as ineligible because we could not verify your ASIC registration and you:
    • have since had your ASIC registration backdated
    • applied with business entity details and we could not establish ASIC registration, and you can now provide evidence of registration or exemption from a requirement to be registered.

If we reassess your application and it meets all the eligibility criteria for the grant, then you will be eligible to receive the grant.

Successful recipients will receive $10,000.

Your invitation email will provide the date that you need to submit your reassessment form by – it will be three weeks from the date you received your invitation email.

If you are not in an eligible ANZSIC class, and were not a participant of JobKeeper, your application will not be eligible to receive a grant.

We plan to complete all reassessments by 30 June 2021. If your reassessment is complex or we require additional information, it may take longer, but we will keep you updated on your case.

We will reconsider applications from business owners if:

  • we requested further information from you, placed your application into draft and you did not resubmit with additional information before the fund closed
  • you applied for the first stream of the Business Support Fund and were ineligible because of your ANZSIC industry code, and did not apply for Stream Two and were enrolled in JobKeeper
  • you were assessed as ineligible because we could not verify your ASIC registration and you:
    • have since had your ASIC registration backdated
    • applied with business entity details and we could not establish ASIC registration, and you can now provide evidence of registration or exemption from a requirement to be registered.

You also must meet all the eligibility criteria for the grant.

No. We are only reconsidering certain applications from business owners who previously applied for the first round of the Business Support Fund.

Business Victoria has a range of other support programs to help your business, including the Business Recovery and Resilience Mentoring program.

You can also access the Upskill My Business program for free online courses, live and on-demand events and a range of business resources.

The Small Business Digital Adaptation Program provides $1200 in rebates for small businesses to access a range of digital business tools.

You can call the Business Victoria hotline on 13 22 15 and if you have a reference number, please have this information with you.

No. The purpose of this grant is to support ongoing businesses, as such the grant can only be awarded to businesses and not individuals.

You will be eligible if your business at the time of your application for the first round of the Business Support Fund (30 March to 1 June 2020) met all the eligibility criteria for the program.

You can reapply to have your application reassessed if:

  • we requested further information from you, placed your application into draft and you did not resubmit with additional information before the fund closed.
  • you applied for the first stream of the Business Support Fund and were ineligible because of your ANZSIC industry code, and did not apply for Stream Two and were enrolled in JobKeeper
  • you were assessed as ineligible because we could not verify your ASIC registration and you:
    • have since had your ASIC registration back dated
    • applied with business entity details and we could not establish ASIC registration, and you can now provide evidence of registration or exemption from a requirement to be registered.

After you applied for the grant, we would have sent you an email asking for further information.

You can call the Business Victoria hotline on 13 22 15 and, if you have your application reference number (starting with a ‘GA’), please have it on hand. Our Escalations Team will follow up to verify your details.

We contacted first-round Business Support Fund applicants who are eligible to be reassessed for a grant via email and/or SMS on 27 April 2021.

If you need further assistance, call the Business Victoria hotline on 13 22 15.

If you have not received an invitation but believe that you fall into one of the categories of first-round Business Support Fund applicants entitled to a reassessment, please complete and submit the Expression of Interest form.

Please note that completing the EOI form does not guarantee reassessment. For businesses to be reassessed, they must meet the eligibility criteria outlined on the Business Support Fund reassessment webpage.

Once your EOI has been received by Business Victoria, it will be acknowledged within one working day and provided to the review team.

The review team will contact you within 14 days to discuss the next steps.

Please note that completing the EOI form does not guarantee reassessment.

We recommend that you read the program guidelines and the frequently asked questions to understand what is required for reassessment before submitting an EOI.

EOI submissions will close at 11:59pm on Monday 21 June 2021.

Our review team will progress your EOI submission based on the information you provide. If the team finds your application is eligible for reassessment, they will contact you and inform you of this. They will also outline the next steps for reassessment, including:

  • completing your unique application form which the review team will send you
  • providing supporting documentation with regards to your business’ payroll and enrolment with JobKeeper between March and June 2020.

If the review team finds your business’ application to the Business Support Fund is not eligible for reassessment, they will contact you via phone within the 14-day period to inform you of this.

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You can provide your Jobkeeper ATO receipt ID number in the reassessment form as evidence that your business was a participant in the Commonwealth’s JobKeeper Payment scheme. This can either be the receipt number on your JobKeeper Business Monthly Declaration or your Jobkeeper enrolment receipt number from the Australian Taxation Office (ATO).

You will be asked to declare that your business employed people at the time of the program in your reassessment form.

You may also provide your WorkCover Employer Number, which can be found on your WorkCover insurance policy’s certificate of currency.

You do not need to provide your BAS with your reassessment form.

However, you may be asked to provide it later for audit purposes or if we require further information to progress your reassessment.

If you choose to provide BAS with your reassessment form, or if you have been asked to provide one by us, please provide a valid BAS from the time of the program (31 March to 1 June 2020).

You do not need to provide evidence of your payroll with your reassessment form. We will verify your business’ payroll through matching data with the State Revenue Office (SRO) and, if relevant, WorkSafe Victoria.

However, you may be asked to provide evidence of your payroll later for audit purposes or if we require further information to progress your reassessment.

No. Government grants received, including from JobKeeper or other Business Support Fund rounds, are “payment for no supply” and not taxable. Therefore, they are not included in annual turnover figures.

For the purpose of this program, you will need to ensure that your GST registration was active on 16 March 2020.

The Business Support Fund was established to provide support to small employing businesses. Being registered for GST demonstrates that your business was a genuine operation which you and your employees relied on for income.

A business must register for GST when it has a GST turnover (gross income minus GST) of $75,000 or more.

If your business was registered for GST on 16 March 2020 and it is still operating today and meets all the other eligibility criteria, then you are eligible for a grant.

Businesses with a 2019-20 turnover of more than $75,000 that are not required under relevant taxation legislation to be registered for GST may also be reassessed if they meet the other eligibility criteria.

Businesses must be registered with the responsible federal or state regulator as required by law.

A business is an entity with a business name registered with the Australian Securities Investment Commission (ASIC).

Charities or not-for-profit organisations must be registered with the Australian Charities and Not-for-profits Commission (ACNC).

Incorporated associations must be registered with Consumers Affairs Victoria (CAV).

If your business was not registered with the required regulators on 16 March 2020 you will not be eligible to receive a grant.

  • Register on the ASIC website if you are a business.
  • Register on the ACNC website if you are a charity or not-for-profit organisation.
  • Register on the CAV website if you are an incorporated association.

To be eligible, your ASIC registration must be active as of 16 March 2020.

Information on updating your ASIC registration is available on the Australian Securities and Investments Commission website.

We will endeavour to reassess and pay all eligible applications by 30 June 2021. However, complex applications may take longer. We will inform you if your application’s reassessment requires more time.

Please check your junk or spam inbox for emails from covid19programs@ecodev.vic.gov.au. If our email notifications cannot be found, please call Business Victoria on 13 22 15 to check that we have your correct email address.

The status of your application will appear in the Business Victoria Grants Portal:

  • Draft – you have started an application
  • Submitted – you have accepted the terms and conditions and submitted
  • Under assessment – your application has been received and is being assessed by the Business Victoria team
  • Successful – your application was successful
  • Unsuccessful – your application was unsuccessful.

From the time you submit your application, you will receive progress notifications.

We cannot contact you while your application remains in ‘draft’ as you haven’t yet given permission for the department to use your contact details.

Yes. Completing the reassessment form ensures that we have up-to-date contact details and bank account information for your business, as well as the necessary information that will enable us to reassess your application.

Please also make sure that you complete and submit your reassessment form by the deadline listed in your invitation email. We cannot reassess your application if the reassessment form is not submitted or remains in draft.

You can contact Business Victoria on 13 22 15 and we will tell you which category you belong in.

You are not required to tell us if you do not want your application reassessed. However, if you do not advise us, you will continue to receive communications from Business Victoria regarding your reassessment.

Please email covid19programs@ecodev.vic.gov.au or call the Business Victoria hotline on 13 22 15 to advise us that you do not want your application reassessed.

If you cannot complete your application by the deadline listed in your invitation email, please call Business Victoria on 13 22 15 as soon as possible.

Update your contact details by following these steps.

1. Click on the Grants Portal link in the email notification you received (as indicated below).

Image 1 shows an example email requesting different identity documents be supplied as part of a BCAP application. A red box highlights an in-text link to the Grants Portal.

2. In the Grants Portal, select the application with the same ‘GA’ reference number quoted in the email.

Image 2 shows a screenshot of the DJPR grants portal with the 'Reference No." column highlighted in a red box.

3. Follow the link to your application.

Image 3 shows a screenshot of the grants portal and a red box highlights a link to, "Business Costs Assistance Program - Non-employing Businesses"

4. Select the Proof of Identity tab on the left of your application preview page.

Image 4 shows a screenshot from the grants portal. On this screen, a series of options are shown to the left of screen, all written in white text, contained in green boxes and sitting on under the other. The 4th option is "Proof of identity" and is highlighted with a red box.

5. Update your proof of identity by selecting the type of ID (for example driver’s licence) you want to update or provide a new ID type and enter the relevant details. Then, select next page.

Image 5 shows the screen the users finds after clicking on 'Proof of identity". Using red boxes it highlights a dropdown menu toward the top of page that reads "Driver Licence" and a button at the bottom of page that reads "Next page >>".

6. Review your application details on the preview page and scroll down to resubmit your application. Note that you must resubmit your application for your changes to be received by our team.

Image 6 shows a screenshot of the application declaration screen the user finds when submitting new identification documents. Full text is available in the grants portal. At the bottom of screen a "Save and submit" button is highlighted in a red box.

7. When you reach the confirmation page below, your application with the updated Document Verification System (DVS) details will have been received. Please note that the DVS will only allow four attempts per application, the original details plus three correction attempts.

Image 7 shows a screenshot of the 'Submission received' screen that a user will see when succussfully supplying new identification documents.

Download a copy of these instructions: Updating Proof of Identity Details in Grant Hub forms (PDF 633.93 KB)PDF icon