Getting a medical certificate

Tell us if you can’t work or study for a short time due to a sickness or injury. You’ll also need to give us a medical certificate.

Why you need to give us a medical certificate

You need to meet your mutual obligation requirements if you’re getting JobSeeker Payment.

If you’re sick or injured, you may get a temporary exemption from your requirements. You’ll need to give us an approved medical certificate so we can work out if we’ll either:

  • give you an exemption
  • reduce or change your requirements.

Read more about what happens when you give us a medical certificate.

If you can’t work or study because of coronavirus (COVID-19) you don’t need to give us a medical certificate.

We’ll give you an exemption for up to 14 days if you’re either:

  • self-isolating
  • caring for someone who needs to self-isolate.

Call us on the Centrelink Employment Services line to let us know. We may ask for a medical certificate after 14 days if you still need to isolate.

What information you need to give us

Your medical certificate must have all of the following information:

  • what the illness, injury or disability is
  • how long it will take for you to recover
  • the period you’ll be unable to work, participate or study.

It also needs to tell us if you’re unable to do these for at least 8 hours per week.

Types of medical certificates

There are 2 types of medical certificates you can give us:

  • Centrelink Medical Certificate form
  • non-Centrelink medical certificate.

We prefer a Centrelink medical certificate form as this helps us assess your request faster.

Who can complete a medical certificate

Only authorised medical doctors may complete and sign the Centrelink Medical Certificate form. A medical doctor is a person with recognised medical qualifications, such as a general practitioner, physician or surgeon.

If you live in some rural or remote areas without a doctor, a community nurse can complete your medical certificate.

Centrelink Medical Certificate form

Your doctor can either:

  • fill the Centrelink Medical Certificate form online, or print it and complete it by hand
  • give us a Centrelink Medical Certificate online using Health Professional Online Services.

Non-Centrelink medical certificate

Your doctor may choose to use their own form. We’ll accept it as long as it has the required details and your doctor signs it.

When to give us a medical certificate

You can do this if you’re sick or injured and you’re either:

  • making a new claim for JobSeeker Payment
  • already getting JobSeeker Payment and you’re unable to meet your requirements.

Applying for an exemption when you claim JobSeeker Payment

If you’re applying for an exemption when you claim, tell us if you’re:

  • still doing paid work or study but you’re doing less hours because of your sickness or injury
  • unable to look for work because of your sickness or injury.

You can submit your medical certificate as one of your supporting documents. Read about how to submit your documents.

Applying for an exemption if you’re already getting JobSeeker Payment

You can apply for an exemption at any time. Your medical certificate will help us decide if your sickness or injury affects your ability to either:

  • do any suitable work
  • participate in other activities such as online training.

How to give us your medical certificate

If your doctor gives you the completed medical certificate, you can submit it online using either:

Read about uploading documents online.

If you can’t submit it online, you can either:

You need to keep meeting your mutual obligation requirements until we finish assessing your request for an exemption. This includes attending appointments with your employment services provider.

Page last updated: 5 September 2022.