Capability assessment

An assessment done by us to find out if you’re capable of meeting your current mutual obligation requirements.

Who this applies to

The capability assessment applies to both:

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When we do them

Your provider will refer you to us for a capability assessment if you get 5 demerits in 6 months. You may also need to have an assessment if you do any of the following things:

  • you don’t go to a job interview
  • you behave inappropriately at a job interview
  • you don’t act on a job referral.

If you need to have a capability assessment, you can't report until you call us on the Employment services line.

Why we do them

We do a capability assessment to find out if your requirements are right for you in your current circumstances.

How the assessment works

We do the assessment over the phone. We’ll talk with you about all of the following:

  • your reasons for not meeting your requirements
  • whether your circumstances have changed
  • whether there’s anything stopping you from attending your appointments or activities.

A Capability Assessment usually takes about 30 minutes depending on your circumstances.

What you need for the assessment

We may ask you for documents or other information to support your reasons for not meeting your requirements.

This may include the contact details of any professional or support worker who is either:

  • helping you with any issues
  • understands your issues and reasons for not meeting your requirements.

A friend or relative can be with you at the assessment if you need support.

Interpreters or special requirements

We can arrange a qualified interpreter to help at your assessment. You need to tell us in advance if you need an interpreter or have any other special needs.

What happens after the assessment

At the end of the assessment we’ll let you know the outcome and you'll be able to report. We’ll also let your provider know the outcome.

If the assessment finds you’re not able to meet your requirements because of your current circumstances:

  • you’ll move back to the green zone with no demerits
  • your provider will do a new plan with you.

If we find you’re able to meet your current requirements you’ll move to the penalty zone.

If you miss any requirements when you’re in the penalty zone, you may get a financial penalty or have your payment cancelled.

If you meet all your requirements for 3 months while you’re in the penalty zone you’ll move back to the green zone with no demerits.

How we protect your privacy

We’re bound by law to protect your privacy and provide a confidential service. This includes any personal details we collect or hold about you. We only provide your details to someone else when allowed by Commonwealth law or when we have your permission.

At your assessment, we’ll talk with you about what details we may share with your provider.

You may also talk to us about your right to see your details under freedom of information.

Read more about your right to privacy.

Page last updated: 17 February 2021