We’re changing some rules to make it easier to claim a payment

7 April 2020

There’s new rules to help you get a payment from us if you’ve lost your job due to coronavirus.

New eligibility rules

We’ve temporarily changed some of the eligibility rules for JobSeeker Payment and Youth Allowance for job seekers. You can claim 1 of these payments if you’re:

  • a permanent employee who’s lost their job
  • a sole trader, self employed, a casual or contract worker whose income has reduced
  • in quarantine or self isolation due to coronavirus
  • caring for someone who’s affected by coronavirus.

When you claim you don’t need to give us a:

  • Employment Separation Certificate
  • letter from your employer
  • relationship verification form, if needed
  • information about your savings.

However, there are other eligibility rules including residence rules and income tests you’ll need to meet.

Changes to waiting periods and asset test

We’ve temporarily removed the following waiting periods:

  • 1 week ordinary waiting period
  • liquid assets waiting period
  • newly arrived residents waiting period
  • seasonal work preclusion period.

There are other waiting periods like the Income Maintenance waiting period that may still apply. We’ll let you know if any apply and how long you need to wait before you get your first payment.

We’ve also temporarily removed the asset test.

Income tests will still apply

We take into account your and your partner’s income. If you’re under 22, we may take into account your parent’s income.

For JobSeeker Payment, we’re increasing the amount your partner can earn before your payment stops. From 27 April 2020, the partner income limit at which your payment will cancel temporarily increases to $3,086.80 per fortnight. This amount may be higher if you get Rent Assistance or Pharmaceutical Allowance with JobSeeker Payment. We also take into account any income you earn.

Coronavirus Supplement

If we approve your claim, you’ll get the $550 Coronavirus Supplement. This payment is taxable. It starts from 27 April 2020. We’ll pay it each fortnight with your income support payment. If you’re on Income Management or have a Cashless Debit Card, part of your payment will go to these.

Economic Support Payments

There are 2 Economic Support Payments of $750 each.

You can get the first $750 payment from 31 March 2020. You must be getting an eligible payment from us or have concession card from 12 March to 13 April 2020.

You may also get a second $750 Economic Support Payment from 13 July 2020. You’ll get it if you’re getting an eligible payment or have an eligible concession card on 10 July 2020. You won’t get this payment if you’re getting the Coronavirus Supplement.

If you’re on Income Management or have a Cashless Debit Card, 100% of the Economic Support Payment will go to your account or card.

For more information

Read more about the:

The Government has announced a fortnightly JobKeeper payment of $1,500, before tax, for workers through their employer. The Australian Tax Office and your employer will work out if their business is eligible for JobKeeper Payment. You don’t claim this payment. You can find out more about the JobKeeper Payment on The Treasury website.

Please regularly check our COVID19 information for updates to help if you’re affected by COVID19.

Page last updated: 5 May 2020