Who can get it

You need to meet eligibility requirements to get the Pandemic Leave Disaster Payment.

You may be eligible if you’re unable to work and earn income because you or someone you’re caring for has to self-isolate or quarantine due to COVID-19.

If you have to self-isolate or quarantine

You may get this payment if you have to self-isolate or quarantine for one of the following reasons:

  • you have coronavirus (COVID-19)
  • you’re required to isolate as a close contact of a person who has COVID-19 by your state or territory
  • a child you care for who is 16 years or under, is required to isolate as a close contact of a person who has COVID-19 by your state or territory
  • you’re caring for someone who has COVID-19
  • you’re caring for someone with disability or a severe medical condition who must self-isolate or quarantine because they’re a close contact of a person with COVID-19.

You must be living in the same household as the person with disability or a severe medical condition.

If you are a close contact

You’re a close contact if you either:

  • usually live with the person who has tested positive with COVID-19
  • have stayed in the same household for more than 4 hours with the person who has tested positive with COVID-19 during their infectious period.

From 27 April 2022, you’re also a close contact if your state or territory government requires you to isolate as a close contact.

An infectious period may be up to 3 days before a person experiences symptoms of COVID-19.

You may also be eligible if you meet all of the following:

  • your state or territory government doesn’t require you to self-isolate or quarantine
  • your employer has directed you not to attend the workplace
  • you’re not able to work from home.

If you are an essential worker

Your state or territory public health order may exempt essential workers who are close contacts from having to isolate. If you’re an essential worker who is able to work and earn income, you won’t be eligible for Pandemic Leave Disaster Payment.

You may be eligible if you’re an essential worker who is unable to work and earn income because you’re caring for:

  • someone who has COVID-19
  • a child under 16 years who is a close contact
  • a person with disability or severe medical condition who is a close contact.

In some states or territories, you may be eligible for the payment if you’re an essential worker who is unable to work because you:

  • need a negative Rapid Antigen Test (RAT) result to return to work
  • are unable to get a RAT
  • must remain in isolation or quarantine.

Check with your state or territory government if you’re an essential worker and if you have to work.

If you meet all the requirements

You must also meet all of the following:

  • you’re at least 17 years old and live in Australia
  • you’re an Australian resident or hold a visa that gives you the right to work in Australia
  • you’re living in Australia during your self-isolation, quarantine or caring period
  • you’re living in Australia at the time of your claim
  • you’re unable to work and lost at least 8 hours or a full day’s work in a 7 day period of self-isolation, quarantine or caring
  • you have no sick leave entitlements, including pandemic sick leave, personal leave or leave to care for another person
  • you have liquid assets of less than $10,000 on the first day of the period you’re claiming for.

Liquid assets are any funds readily available to you in cash or savings, or assets that can easily be changed into cash. For example, money loaned to other people.

You must submit a claim within 14 days of the start your isolation or caring period.

Your isolation or caring period must begin on or before 30 June 2022.

Page last updated: 29 April 2022