How to protect yourself when dealing with us
Information to help you prepare a safety plan and deal with Child Support, Centrelink or Medicare.
Call 000 if you are in danger.
To access 24/7 counselling and support call 1800RESPECT on 1800 737 732.
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Safety planning is thinking about things you can do to be safer when living with violence or abuse. As part of your safety planning, there are things you can do if you deal with Centrelink, Medicare or Child Support.
Calling us for help
You can contact us if you have questions about:
- Centrelink payments or debts
- Medicare payments or processes
- Child Support assessments or debt.
If you’re affected by family and domestic violence, you can let us know. Anything you tell us is private. Any of our staff can help you access the right support.
Our social workers can also provide free, confidential counselling. They can refer you to other services that might help. You can contact a social worker by calling us on the same number you use to call Centrelink and asking to speak with one.
If you don’t usually call Centrelink, call the Employment Services line on 132 850. You’ll then need to ask to speak with a social worker. Keep in mind that you may need to wait on hold before you speak to someone.
Get help to understand our information
If you need help to understand information about our payments and services, there are accessible options available. For example, we can help if:
- you have a hearing or speech impairment
- you need to talk to someone in your language
- you or someone in your care has a disability, illness or injury.
To speak to us in your language, call:
- 131 202 about Centrelink payments and services
- the Translating and Interpreting Service (TIS National) on 131 450 about Medicare or Child Support payments and services.
We also have a Centrelink Indigenous Call Centre. If you’re Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander, call 1800 136 380 to speak to our trained staff.
Keeping your personal details safe
If you’re concerned about the security of your Child Support, Centrelink or Medicare records, let us know. If someone else has access to your online accounts, you can change your passwords at any time.
If you don’t already have a myGov account we can help you set one up. You can then link it to your Centrelink, Medicare or Child Support online account. This is a secure, safe and convenient way to do your business with us.
We can help you end an arrangement if someone else:
- has permission to deal with Centrelink, Medicare or Child Support on your behalf
- is getting and using your Centrelink payment.
We’ll let you know if we need to tell the other party about the change.
You can also authorise someone to deal with us on your behalf. This could be a person or an organisation.
Getting your own payment
We can check if you can get payment from us. As part of your safety planning, you may have secure access to a bank account in your name only.
If you already get payments from us, we can send your payments to that account. To do this, you’ll need to change your bank account details. We can help you do this, or you can do it online. Remember, you’ll need to do this separately for Centrelink, Medicare and Child Support.
You can use our Payment and Service Finder to see what payments and services you may be able to get.
You may need to meet mutual obligation requirements to get a Centrelink payment. Talk to us or to your provider if you can’t:
- attend an appointment
- meet your mutual obligation requirements.
Getting your own Medicare card
You can transfer to a new Medicare card if it’s unsafe to stay on your current card. To do this, call Medicare on 132 011 and tell us what you want to do. We’ll direct you to the next step.
If your child has a My Health Record, both parents may be able to view Medicare information for their child. Go to My Health Record for more information on controlling the information in your My Health Record.
Getting your own letters and mail
Remember to update your personal details with us.
This could be a new postal address or phone number. This is to make sure only you get payments and correspondence from us. You can do this when you call us, or by using our online services through myGov.
Setting up a child support agreement
You may have an existing child support case or need to apply for Child Support to get Family Tax Benefit.
Call us on 131 272 if you’re concerned about:
- seeking child support from your ex-partner
- us contacting your ex-partner.
Page last updated: 15 September 2020
This information was printed 25 September 2020 from https://www.servicesaustralia.gov.au/individuals/subjects/family-and-domestic-violence/how-we-can-help-you-family-and-domestic-violence-concerns/how-protect-yourself-when-dealing-us. It may not include all of the relevant information on this topic. Please consider any relevant site notices at https://www.servicesaustralia.gov.au/individuals/site-notices when using this material.