Who can get it

You may get this if you’ve left your home because of an extreme circumstance such as fire, flood or community violence.


Extreme circumstances are events such as severe property damage from a house fire or flood. It can also be community violence.

To get this payment you must be all of the following:

  • Moving house due to an extreme circumstance, such as fire, flood or community violence
  • eligible for, or getting, an income support payment or ABSTUDY Living Allowance
  • in severe financial hardship
  • in Australia when the extreme circumstance happened and when you submit your claim.

You must also meet all of the following. You:

  • experienced an extreme circumstance where it's unreasonable for you to return to your home in the near future
  • intend to establish or have established a new home
  • couldn’t have predicted that the extreme circumstance would happen
  • couldn’t have avoided the extreme circumstance
  • must contact us within the required timeframe.

We’ll ask you for evidence of the extreme circumstance that led you to claim, such as a police or fire report.

If you don’t meet these criteria you can use the Payment and Service Finder to explore other support options.

When you can’t get it

You can’t get it if any of the following apply:

  • have been evicted from your home because you didn’t pay your mortgage or rent
  • haven’t experienced an extreme circumstance but chose to move homes
  • haven’t established or intend to establish a new home.

You also can’t get this payment if you got a disaster relief payment for the same extreme circumstance such as:

  • Australian Government Disaster Recovery Payment
  • Disaster Recovery Allowance
  • any other payment or allowance from your local or state or territory governments, or the Commonwealth.

When to contact us

To get this payment you must contact us within 7 days of deciding that you can’t return to your home.

We consider you to have made contact if you do 1 of these to get a payment or concession card:

  • begin a claim using your Centrelink online account
  • call us on your regular payment line
  • visit a service centre.

After contacting us, you must submit your claim within 14 days.

Page last updated: 3 March 2022