What your commitments are

There are some things you must do to keep getting your Parenting Payment.

The Australian Government has announced changes to coronavirus (COVID-19) support. Find out how changes to coronavirus (COVID-19) support may impact you.

While getting Parenting Payment you need to do all the following:

Depending on your circumstances, you may need to either:

  • meet mutual obligation requirements
  • participate in ParentsNext.

This may apply even if you’re getting both JobKeeper Payment and Parenting Payment.

Mutual obligation requirements

If you live in a bushfire affected area of Western Australia

Mutual obligation requirements for job seekers and participants are temporarily paused from Tuesday 9 February to Tuesday 2 March 2021. This applies if you live in 1 of the following:

  • City of Swan
  • Shire of Mundaring
  • Shire of Chittering
  • City of Northam.

These arrangements apply if you’re in 1 of the following:

  • jobactive
  • Online Employment Services
  • Disability Employment Services
  • ParentsNext as a compulsory participant.

If you don’t meet your requirements during this period, no payment suspensions or financial penalties will apply.

You can read more about the temporary pause on the Department of Education, Skills and Employment website.

If you live in NSW, VIC, ACT, QLD, NT, TAS, SA or non-bushfire affected areas of WA

Mutual obligation requirements are tasks and activities you agree to do while getting Parenting Payment from us. They’ll apply to you when your youngest child turns 6 or if you’re a compulsory ParentsNext participant.

You must meet all of your mutual obligation requirements.

This means doing the tasks and activities in your Job Plan. Suspensions and penalties apply if you don’t.

If you’re in online employment services, you need to do the tasks on your dashboard.

You must attend all appointments with your provider. You may be able to do this in any of the following ways:

  • over the phone
  • online
  • in person, if safe to do so.

You can opt-in to get face to face services by contacting your provider. If you do, you’ll go to appointments and activities in person, if it’s safe to do so.

If you don’t want face to face servicing, you may be able to do these over the phone or online.

Read about mutual obligation requirements.

When penalties apply

There are demerits and financial penalties for not meeting your mutual obligation requirements.

This applies to you if you’re with 1 of these:

If you’re in the Community Development Program, the penalties are different.

When exemptions apply

You may be exempt from mutual obligation requirements in certain circumstances. This includes if you’re either:

  • impacted by coronavirus (COVID-19)
  • a sole trader or self employed.

Read about what exemptions may apply.

Report employment income

If you get an income support payment from us, you must report any income you and your partner get. This includes JobKeeper Payment. You may need to report every 2 weeks, even if it’s $0. This is so we pay you the right amount.

Before you get your first payment, you may need to report your and your partner’s income.

You can report your income in any of these ways, by:

You can check your reporting dates through your Centrelink online account.

When you report your income each fortnight, you may need to confirm you’re meeting your mutual obligation requirements.

Read about income reporting and get help using our Centrelink online account guides.

Change of circumstances

You must tell us if things change as it may affect your Parenting Payment.

You can tell us using the Express Plus Centrelink mobile app or your Centrelink online account through myGov.

Read about what you need to tell us.

Next: How to manage your payment

Your options for Parenting Payment.

Page last updated: 24 February 2021