Families - coronavirus (COVID-19)

Find out about your family payments and child support if you’re affected by coronavirus (COVID-19).

There are changes to claims and your obligations due to coronavirus (COVID-19). This includes changes to waiting periods, the income test, what you need to give us, and your obligations. We’ve suspended participation requirements for Disability Support Pension. We’ve also paused a range of Centrelink debt raising and recovery activities.

From 6 April to 28 June 2020, you won’t need to pay child care fees when you access child care.
Learn about the $750 one off Economic Support Payment as part of the Government’s response to coronavirus (COVID-19).

Child Care Subsidy (CCS)

You won’t need to pay child care fees when you access child care between 6 April and 28 June 2020.

During this time, you should:

  • enrol or re-enrol your child with a service
  • keep your child enrolled
  • continue using child care as you need.

If you need to enrol or re-enrol your child you should talk to your child care service. You’ll also need to confirm their enrolment with us.

You won’t get Child Care Subsidy and Additional Child Care Subsidy during this time. But you should make sure you stay eligible for Child Care Subsidy, for example by:

On 29 June 2020, your Child Care Subsidy will start again as long as you stay eligible. There’s nothing you’ll need to do to start it again.

You should continue to update your family income estimate as necessary, especially if you get Family Tax Benefit.

If you paid fees before 6 April 2020

Your child care service may waive your fees between 23 March and 5 April 2020. You should speak to them about this.

If your child was absent before 6 April 2020

In response to coronavirus, you were given 20 extra absences per child for the 2019-20 financial year. This means you can get up to 62 absences this year for any reason.

Family Tax Benefit (FTB)

Coronavirus may impact your Family Tax Benefit (FTB). This includes if:

If your family income changes

Your family income estimate affects how much FTB you can get. If you or your partner stop work, your family’s income may change. Read our guide about how to update your income estimate.

When you get payments from us

You may need to include some payments you or your partner get from us in your family income estimate. This includes:

  • JobSeeker Payment
  • Parenting Payment
  • Coronavirus Supplement.

The $750 Economic Support Payment is a non-taxable payment. You don’t need to include it in your family income estimate.

If your child’s over 16 and can’t study

When your child turns 16, you may continue to get FTB for them. However, they need to be in full time secondary study or exempt from the study requirements.

Your child may still meet these study requirements even if:

  • they’re sick or isolated
  • their school closes
  • you choose to keep them away as a precautionary measure.

If they intend to return to study, you’ll continue to qualify for FTB. There’s nothing you need to do.

Parental Leave Pay

In most cases, your employer pays your Parental Leave Pay. If your employer can’t pay you because of coronavirus, we can pay you.

Tell us about this change online. Sign in to your Centrelink online account through myGov, then select Parental Leave Pay Circumstances.

If we haven't assessed your claim yet, call the Families line.

The Work Test

The work test hasn’t changed.

If you can’t get Parental Leave Pay, you may be able to get Newborn Upfront Payment and Newborn Supplement. This is after your child’s birth.

You may be eligible for another payment now. Find out more if you need a payment because of coronavirus (COVID-19).

If you stopped work because of the risk to your pregnancy

Depending on your individual work circumstances, we may move your work test period under the Dangerous Job provisions. If you had to stop working due to the risk of coronavirus, you may still meet the work test. You must provide proof from your employer and a medical professional. This proof must confirm you stopped work because of the risk to your pregnancy.

Child Support

If you have a child support assessment and your situation has changed, tell us so we can update your details. This includes if your income levels have decreased or care of your children has changed.

This is important so we can make sure your assessment is correct.

You can update your details online, through the Express Plus Child Support mobile app or by calling us.

Contact us

If you’re concerned about coming to a service centre to do business with us you can use our online services.

If you don’t have access to a self service option please call either:

Family and domestic violence

If you’re affected by family and domestic violence, we can help. We provide information, support and referrals.

Page last updated: 6 April 2020