How to claim

Complete the following steps to claim a Crisis Payment for National Health Emergency (COVID-19). Before you start, check if you can get it.

We encourage you not to come to a service centre during this period. If you need to establish your identity or create a Centrelink online account, you can do this using myGov.

You can’t get this payment if you haven’t contacted us within the first 14 days of entering quarantine or self-isolation, or caring for someone who is.

What evidence you need to provide

We need to verify that you’re eligible for this payment. That’s why we ask you to provide evidence that you, or the person you were caring for, were required to enter quarantine or self-isolation.

Evidence can include a text message or document confirming:

  • a COVID-19 test was taken
  • the results of a COVID-19 test.

The evidence must include the date and who did the test or issued the results. For example, the name of the medical or pathology centre.

You can’t use COVID-19 vaccination certificates to claim this payment.

We may need evidence that you’re in severe financial hardship. This includes evidence of:

  • cash you have on hand
  • money you have in the bank
  • shares
  • bonds
  • gifts
  • other money you can access.

Steps to claim a Crisis Payment for National Health Emergency (COVID-19)

  1. Visiting a service centre

    1. Get ready to claim

    The easiest way to claim is online. If you have a correspondence nominee they can also claim for you online. If you’re not getting an income support payment or ABSTUDY Living Allowance, you’ll need to claim one.

    To claim online, you need a myGov account linked to Centrelink. If you have a nominee they also need to have their own account. If you don’t have a myGov account or a Centrelink online account you’ll need to set them up.

    You’ll need your Centrelink Customer Reference Number (CRN) to link your Centrelink online account to myGov.

    If you ever got a payment from us you’ll still have a CRN, CRNs don’t change.

    If you don’t have a CRN, you’ll need to confirm your identity online through myGov to get one and link to Centrelink. You don’t need to visit a service centre.

  2. Claim online

    2. Make your claim

    1. Sign in to myGov and go to Centrelink.
    2. Select Payments and Claims from the menu, then Claims, then Make a claim
    3. Select Crisis Payments
    4. Select Apply for Crisis Payment for National Health Emergency
    5. Answer all the questions
    6. Submit your claim.

    When you’re ready:

    Sign in to myGov

    If you can’t claim online

    If you can’t claim online, you can call your regular payment line.

    Supporting evidence

    We will ask you to give us evidence to support your claim, like proof of taking a COVID-19 test or test results. 

    You can’t use COVID-19 vaccination certificates to claim this payment.


    3. Track your claim

    After you submit your claim online, you’ll get a receipt telling you:

    • the ID number of your claim
    • the date we estimate your claim will be complete
    • a link to track its progress.

    You can track the progress of your claim online. Sign in to myGov and go to Centrelink, or use the Express Plus Centrelink mobile app.

    We’ll let you know the result of your claim. We’ll send a letter to either your:

    If you don’t get electronic letters, we’ll send you a letter in the mail.

    If we need more details we’ll ask you for them.

    You have the right to appeal our decision. Read about reviews and appeals.

Next: What other help is available

We have a range of tools, information and other services to help you if you’re going through a crisis.

Page last updated: 15 September 2021