Payments for job seekers

We offer income support if you’re looking for work or completing approved studies to help you get a job.

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Income support while you look for work

You may be able to get a payment while you look for work.

Newstart Allowance is an income support payment while you’re unemployed and looking for work, or doing approved activities to find a job. It's for people between 22 years of age and Age Pension age.

Youth Allowance for job seekers is financial help if you’re 21 or younger and looking for work, or temporarily unable to work.

Parenting Payment is an income support payment while you’re a young child’s main carer. This payment supports parents or guardians to help with the cost of raising children.

JobSeeker Payment from 20 March 2020 this is the new working age payment. It will be the main income support payment if you’re at least 22 years of age and under Age Pension age.

Payments to help you study or train

You may be able to get a payment while you’re studying.

Austudy is for full time students and Australian Apprentices aged 25 or older.

ABSTUDY is for Aboriginal or Torres Strait Islanders who are studying or undertaking an Australian Apprenticeship.

Youth Allowance for students and apprentices is financial help if you’re 24 or younger and studying or an Australian Apprentice. To get this payment you need to be 16 to 24 years of age.

You may be eligible for other payments if you’re studying or training and getting certain income support payments.

You may be able to get the Pensioner Education Supplement. This payment helps with the ongoing costs of full time or part time study in a secondary or tertiary course.

You may also be able to get Education Entry Payment.

Child care costs while you study or look for work

Child Care Subsidy helps with the cost of approved child care.

If you’re transitioning to work from certain income support payments you may be able to get Additional Child Care Subsidy. This gives some families extra help with child care fees. Read more about who can get the Transition to Work subsidy.

We pay these subsidies to your child care provider to reduce the fees you pay.

Job seekers with disability

Disability Support Pension provides financial support if you can’t work because you have a physical, intellectual or psychiatric condition. You may also get this payment if you’re permanently blind.

If you’re eligible for Disability Support Pension, you may also get other benefits including a Pensioner Concession Card. If you start work you may still get this payment, depending on the number of hours you work and how much you earn.

Mobility Allowance helps you take part in approved activities when you have a disability, illness or injury. It helps with transport costs if you can’t use public transport without substantial help, either permanently or for long periods. To get this payment you must be looking for work or taking part in paid or voluntary work, study or training.

You won’t get Mobility Allowance if you’re getting a funded package of support through the National Disability Insurance Scheme.

Youth Disability Supplement provides extra financial support to young people with physical, intellectual or psychiatric disability who get certain income support payments.

Other government and community support services

There are a range of other organisations that provide support services and information you may find helpful. You can use the Payment and Service Finder to find help in your area.

JobAccess offers help and workplace solutions for people with disability who are looking for work, and their potential and current employers.

The Department of Education, Skills, and Employment offers a range of services, including:

  • jobactive - connects job seekers with employers through a network of providers
  • the New Enterprise Incentive Scheme - helps job seekers who want to become self-employed business owners
  • Job Jumpstart - an online resource with tips and articles about careers and job hunting.

My future is Australia's national career information and exploration service. It helps with career decisions, planning career pathways and managing work transitions.

MoneySmart has information to help you make the most of your money. Read the Losing your job section on the MoneySmart website.

beyondblue is an independent, not for profit organisation for depression, anxiety and related mental health disorders in Australia.

MensLine Australia gives professional telephone and online support and information services for men with family and relationship concerns.

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Page last updated: 13 February 2020