Before the birth of your baby

Check if you can get payments, register for self-service and think about child care. You can submit your pre-birth claim up to 3 months before your baby is due.

Check if you're eligible for payments

You might be able to get payments to help with the cost of having a baby and raising children:

  • Parental Leave Pay – helps eligible working parents take time off work to care for a newborn child
  • Dad and Partner Pay – gives eligible dads and partners up to two weeks off work with a newborn child
  • Family Tax Benefit (FTB) – is a two part payment to help with the cost of raising children. FTB may include a one-off lump sum of Newborn Upfront Payment. FTB may also include Newborn Supplement which is an increase to your FTB for 13 weeks
  • Parenting Payment – the main income support payment while you’re a young child’s main carer.

Use our Payment and Service Finder to find, estimate and compare payments and services you may be able to get.

Baby Bonus is no longer available. You may get Newborn Upfront Payment and Newborn Supplement instead.

Register for self service

If you’re a new Centrelink customer, you’ll need a Customer Reference Number (CRN) before you can start your claim. You can establish your identity and get one with myGov and link it to Centrelink. You can then make your claim through your Centrelink online account. You don’t need to visit a service centre. You can do most of your business with us online. Make sure you register for a self service option:

Submit your pre-birth claim for payments

You can submit a claim for some payments as early as 3 months before your baby's due date. Claiming early helps make the process quicker and easier once your baby arrives.

Sign in to your Centrelink online account through myGov to start your claim.

If you don’t have a myGov account, you can create one. You can use your CRN to link your Centrelink online account.

Select Make a claim on your homepage, then Make a claim. Select Get started from the Families category. Select Apply for Family Assistance (including Paid Parental Leave) to claim for:

Make sure you include any supporting documents we ask you for at the end of the claim. You can submit your documents online. We can't process your claim until we have all the required documents.

Remember, you can only submit a claim for Parenting Payment after the birth of your baby.

Get organised with Medicare

You can enrol your baby in Medicare once they arrive, but there are some things to think about before then.

If you have a partner, you should think about registering as a Medicare Safety Net family. If you’re registered as a family or a couple, we combine your medical costs. This means you’re more likely to reach the Medicare Safety Net threshold sooner.

To register as a Medicare Safety Net family either:

When you baby is born, you can also add them to your Medicare Safety Net family. You can do this when you enrol your baby in Medicare.

You may also want to copy or transfer to another card, such as your partner or spouse’s card. You can then ask us to copy your child onto that card after their enrolment.

You don’t have to be on the same card as your partner.

Talk to your employer

Discuss your plans for taking leave with your employer. You should give them written notice at least 10 weeks before you plan to start your leave.

Read about your rights and how to take leave from work on the Fair Work Ombudsman website.

Use the Supporting Working Parents website to find out about your rights in the workplace:

  • while pregnant
  • during parental leave
  • on returning to the workplace.

If you plan to get Parental Leave Pay, you should tell your employer. They may need to provide the Paid Parental Leave funds to you.

Learn about child care options

If you’ll return to work or study after the birth of your baby, you should look at your child care options. There may be a waiting list for child care services.

We offer help with the cost of child care through Child Care Subsidy and Additional Child Care Subsidy. You can only submit a claim for these after the birth of your baby.

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Page last updated: 2 September 2020