Not meeting mutual obligation requirements in the Community Development Program

Job seekers in the Community Development Program may get a penalty for not meeting mutual obligation requirements without a valid reason.

Mutual obligation requirements start again in a limited capacity from 9 June 2020.

Suspensions and penalties don’t currently apply. We’ll let you know when they start again.

Who this applies to

Job seekers in the Community Development Program who may get a failure and lose some or all of their payment for not meeting their requirements without a reasonable excuse.

Read more about the Community Development Program on the National Indigenous Australians Agency website.

Who this doesn’t apply to

There are different rules for job seekers in jobactive and Disability Employment Services or ParentsNext participants.

Read more about demerits and penalties for not meeting mutual obligation requirements.

When penalties apply

You must meet all your mutual obligation requirements.

If you don’t, your payment may stop. You may also get a failure and lose some or all of your payment.

You can get a failure if you don’t:

  • go to appointments with your Community Development Program provider
  • go to activities such as Work for the Dole
  • agree to or change a job plan if asked
  • show you’re actively looking for work if that’s part of your Job Plan
  • accept suitable job offers
  • go to job interviews
  • have valid a reason for leaving a job.

We’ll always speak with you before applying a failure or penalty.

Remember your appointment time and make sure you take part in Work for the Dole. You can also get SMS reminders if we have your mobile phone number.

Comprehensive compliance assessment

A comprehensive compliance assessment is how we find out why you’re not meeting your requirements.

We or your provider will refer you for this assessment if you continue to miss activities and appointments. We may also refer you if we’re concerned about your ability to meet your requirements.

Read more about comprehensive compliance assessments.

Serious failures

If, after a comprehensive compliance assessment we find you’ve been persistently non-compliant, you may get a serious failure.

You may also get a serious failure if you don’t:

  • accept a suitable job offer
  • start work you’ve accepted.

A serious failure means we won’t pay you for 8 weeks.

During this time, your payment may start again if you agree to do a compliance activity.

Unemployment non-payment period

If you choose to leave your job or you lose it because of misconduct, we may not pay you for either:

  • 8 weeks
  • 12 weeks if you got relocation assistance for the job from your provider.

This won’t affect family assistance payments.

We may waive the non-payment period if you meet certain conditions and are in severe financial hardship.

When to ask for a review of a decision

If you get a failure and disagree with the decision, you have the right to ask us to review our decision.

Read more about reviews and appeals.

Page last updated: 12 June 2020