Centrelink Benefits

What Benefits will Centrelink be providing?

  • The Government announced it will provide a temporary ‘Coronavirus Supplement’ of $550 a fortnight to new and existing income support recipients from 27 April 2020 for six months. People will receive their usual payment plus $550 each fortnight for the six-month period.
  •  
  • The government also announced that they will provide two ‘Economic Support Payments’ of $750 each.
  • ‘Crisis Payments’ may be available if you need to self-isolate, are in severe financial hardship and you can get an income support payment. The Crisis payment is a one-off payment equal to a week’s pay of your existing income support payment rate.

Who is Eligible to Receive the Coronavirus Supplement of $550 per fortnight?

The Coronavirus Supplement will be provided to people receiving (currently or after making a claim due to COVID-19):

  • JobSeeker Payment
  • Sickness Allowance
  • Youth Allowance for jobseekers
  • Parenting Payment Partnered
  • Parenting Payment Single
  • Partner Allowance
  • Sickness Allowance
  • Farm Household Allowance.

To discuss your personal circumstances and determine your eligibility, please contact Centrelink via MyGov/over the phone.

Who is Eligible to Receive the Two Economic Support Payments of $750?

To be eligible for the first Economic Support payment you must be residing in Australia and be receiving payments or hold a concession card with Centrelink (a list of the eligible payments/concession cards can be found here under the heading ‘Two Economic Support Payments’).

To be eligible for the second Economic Support Payment, you must satisfy the requirements of the first Economic Support Payment but also you must not be receiving the Coronavirus Supplement of $550 per fortnight.

To discuss your personal circumstances and determine your eligibility, please contact Centrelink via MyGov/over the phone.

I am a Sole Trader/Self Employed and my Business has been Impacted/Significantly Reduced due to COVID-19, What Assistance is Available to Me?

Centrelink has expanded its eligibility for Jobseeker Payments to include Sole Traders and Self-Employed people. Sole Traders/Self Employed people will need to make a declaration to Centrelink to state that their business has been suspended or their turnover has reduced significantly due to COVID-19.

I Have Been Made Redundant, Lost My Job or I am Still Currently Employed but My Hours Have Significantly Reduced; What Assistance is Available to Me?

If you have been made redundant or lost your job due to COVID-19, you will be eligible for assistance from Centrelink. Please make a claim via MyGov or contact Centrelink over the phone.

If you are still currently employed but your hours have reduced significantly, you may be eligible to receive assistance from Centrelink. If this circumstance is relevant to you, you will need a written/signed letter from your employer to confirm that your hours have significantly reduced before making a claim.

I am a Business Owner and My Business Has Closed Due to COVID-19, What Assistance is Available to Me?

Similar to the points noted above, if you have experienced a significant downturn in business due to COVID-19, you may be able to receive the Coronavirus Supplement or the two Economic Support Payments.

To discuss your personal circumstances and determine your eligibility, please contact Centrelink via MyGov/over the phone.

I am Currently Caring for Someone Who is Infected or in Isolation Due to COVID-19, What Assistance is Available to Me?

Centrelink has expanded its eligibility for Jobseeker Payments to include people caring for someone infected or in isolation as a result of contact with Coronavirus. You will therefore be eligible to receive jobseeker payments.

I am Currently Receiving Centrelink Benefits; do I Need to Apply for the Coronavirus Supplement or Economic Support Payment?

No, Centrelink will automatically pay the Coronavirus Payment to eligible recipients each fortnight from 27 April 2020.

I am not Currently Receiving Benefits from Centrelink how do I Access These Benefits/How do I apply for Benefits?

If you are not already getting a payment and need/want to claim, a claim can be completed via MyGov or over the phone with Centrelink.

Centrelink has streamlined the application process to allow those impacted by COVID-19 to access benefits in a more timely manner.

It is encouraged that you utilize the online services available (you will need to create a MyGov profile if you do not already have one), however, if you are unable to access online services, please call Centrelink.

How is Centrelink Streamlining the Application Process for Assistance?

The Government has temporarily waived:

  • The assets test (any assets you own do not impact upon the assistance you receive)
  • The Ordinary Waiting Period, Liquid Assets Waiting Period, Seasonal Workers Preclusion Period and Newly Arrived Residents Waiting Period – this means you will receive funds in a more timely manner.
  • From 27 April 2020, the need to provide employment separation certificates, proof of rental arrangements and proof of relationship status.
  •  

I Earn Income from Rental Properties or Other Investments, How Does This Impact Any Assistance That I May be Eligible For?

Income testing still applies and will impact your eligibility to receive funding and the amount of funding that may be received from Centrelink. To determine if your other investments impact your eligibility and to obtain further advice surrounding amounts that you may be able to receive. We suggest you contact Centrelink via MyGov or over the phone to discuss your personal circumstances and determine how your investments impact your eligibility.

I Don’t Have a Customer Reference Number (CRN) with Centrelink/I Can’t Remember my CRN

When dealing with Centrelink you will receive (if you have not received one already) a CRN. Your CRN is a way to identify your personal records with Centrelink. The CRN contains nine numbers and a letter, for example: 123 456 789A.

If you have previously received payments from Centrelink you will already have a CRN. If you have never received payments or corresponded with Centrelink in the past, a CRN will need to be provided to you as part of your claim process.

Details surrounding finding/obtaining your CRN can be found here.

<<Date>>

To Whom it May Concern,

Re: Reduction in Working Hours of <<Employee Name>>

Due to the impacts of COVID-19, I confirm that the hours of <<Employee Name>> have been significantly reduced due to a downturn in business.
If you require any additional information in relation to the above, please don’t hesitate to contact me via email <<enter your email address>> or phone <<enter your landline or mobile number>>.

Yours sincerely,
<<Your Business Name>>

<<Director/Business Owner’s Name>>
<<Position of Signatory e.g. Director>>