Who can get it

You need to meet some rules to get JobSeeker Payment.

Eligibility rules

The rules you need to meet to get JobSeeker Payment depend on your situation.

You’ll need to meet all of these:

  • you’re between 22 and Age Pension age
  • you meet residence rules
  • you meet the income and assets tests.

You also need to meet rules for 1 of these situations:

  • You meet our definition of unemployed and you’re looking for work.
  • You’re sick or injured and are unable to do your usual work or study for a short time.

Temporary changes to eligibility rules during coronavirus (COVID-19)

You may be able to get JobSeeker Payment if your work situation changes because of COVID-19. The change in your work situation can be for 1 of the following reasons. You’re:

  • a permanent employee and have lost your job
  • a sole trader, self-employed, a casual or contract worker and your income has reduced
  • caring for someone who’s affected by coronavirus.

Keep in mind, we’ve temporarily waived some waiting periods due to coronavirus (COVID-19). Read more about upcoming changes during COVID-19.

Unemployed and looking for work

If you’re unemployed, or you’re not in full time work, you may get JobSeeker Payment. This can include if you’re doing part time or casual work.

If you get JobSeeker Payment and you earn income over a certain amount, it will affect how much you get. Read more about income tests.

You can use our Payment and Service Finder to help check if you can get a payment. You can also check what you can get if you’re affected by COVID-19.

Sick or injured and can’t do your usual work or study

You may be sick or injured, which stops you from doing your usual work or study for a short time. In this case, you may get JobSeeker Payment. You’ll need to meet certain rules and give us a medical certificate.

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

JobKeeper Payment

You need to report your JobKeeper Payment income if you get an income support payment. Read more about what happens if you get JobKeeper Payment.

Next: How much you can get

We pay JobSeeker Payment every 2 weeks. The amount you get depends on your personal situation.

Page last updated: 12 October 2020