When you'll get your first payment

There may be 1 or more waiting periods that apply before you get your first job seekers Youth Allowance payment.

When you’ll get paid

In most cases, you’ll get your first Youth Allowance payment 2 weeks after we approve your claim. You may have to wait longer if any waiting periods apply. Once your payment starts, we’ll pay you fortnightly.

We calculate the waiting periods that apply to you when we assess your claim. You can expect to hear from us within 21 days of submitting your claim. The time it takes us to assess your claim doesn’t affect your waiting period.

It’s best to submit your claim as soon as possible after your work ends. This way there may be less time between your last payment from your employer and your first payment from us.

We have tips and tools for budgeting and managing your money during this time.

Once you’ve completed your claim check your Centrelink online account through myGov. It will tell you when:

  • we’ve accepted your claim
  • your payment will start
  • you need to report your income
  • your first income report is due.

You’ll need to report your income before we can make your first payment.

Why you may have to wait

You have savings or other money

You may have to wait 1 to 13 weeks if you or your partner have liquid assets over certain limits. Liquid assets are any funds readily available to you or your partner. This includes money owed by your or your partner’s employer.

Read about liquid assets waiting periods.

You got a lump sum payment when you finished work

You may have to wait if your employer paid you a lump sum as either:

  • annual leave
  • a redundancy when you left.

The time you have to wait is relative to the lump sum payment. Read about income maintenance periods.

You recently finished seasonal work

You may have to wait if you or your partner finished seasonal, contract or intermittent work in the 6 months before claiming.

The time you need to wait depends on how much you earned and how long you were working. Read about the seasonal work preclusion period.

You’re new to Australia

If you've recently arrived in Australia as a resident, you may have to wait up to 4 years to qualify. Read about the newly arrived resident’s waiting period.

You’ve moved to an area with fewer job opportunities

If you moved to an area with fewer jobs within 6 months before claiming, a 26 week non-payment period may apply.

You’ve had a compensation payment

You may have to wait if you’ve had a lump sum compensation payment. The time you have to wait is relative to your lump sum payment. Use our estimator or contact us for information about your compensation preclusion period.

Other waiting periods

Due to COVID-19 the ordinary waiting period doesn't apply at the moment.

It starts again from 1 July 2021.

Next: How to report and manage your payment

To keep getting Youth Allowance for job seekers payment you need to report your income every 2 weeks. You also need to keep meeting your mutual obligation requirements.

Page last updated: 1 April 2021