The Government is helping people who have lost their jobs or experienced a reduction in their income as a result of coronavirus, as well as many people who receive Centrelink payments and concession cards.
If you were receiving an eligible Centrelink payment – such as Age Pension, Carer Payment, Jobseeker Payment, or Family Tax Benefit – or eligible concession cards and living in Australia between 12 March and 13 April 2020, then you will receive the $750 Economic Support Payment.
This payment is part of the Government’s support package to help Australians through the COVID-19 pandemic. The full list of eligible payments is available by clicking here.
You do not need to do anything to get this payment – Services Australia will pay $750 automatically if you are eligible. Most people should have received this payment in their bank account on the 17 April. People can only get this support payment once, even if they get multiple eligible payments.
A temporary Coronavirus Supplement has also been introduced. People who receive an eligible payment will get an extra $550 a fortnight on top of their regular income support payment for up to six months. The supplement will be applied automatically if people get:
- JobSeeker Payment, Partner Allowance, Widow Allowance, Sickness Allowance and Wife Pension
- Youth Allowance for job seekers
- Youth Allowance for students and apprentices
- Austudy for students and apprentices
- ABSTUDY for students getting Living Allowance
- Parenting Payment partnered and single
- Farm Household Allowance
Second Economic Support Payment
If you are not eligible for the Coronavirus Supplement you may get a second $750 Economic Support Payment. Services Australia will pay this from 13 July 2020. People may get this second payment if they were eligible on 10 July 2020 for any payments or concession cards that were eligible for the first Economic Support Payment.
For those who may have lost their jobs or seen a reduction in their income, the eligibility criteria for JobSeeker Payment and Youth Allowance has also been expanded. You may be eligible for these payments if you are a permanent employee and have been stood down or lost your job, a sole trader, self-employed, a casual or a contract worker whose income has reduced, or caring for someone who is affected by coronavirus.
The Government has waived asset testing for six months from 25 March for Jobseeker Payment, Youth Allowance for jobseekers, and Parenting Payment, as well as the liquid asset test waiting period, newly arrived residents waiting period, and seasonal work preclusion period. Income testing, income maintenance and compensation preclusion periods will still apply.
To make it easier and faster for people to claim, the Government has also removed a number of requirements, such as Employment Separation Certificates, proof of rental arrangements, and verification of relationship status.
More information about assistance available for those affected by coronavirus is available by clicking here.
Source – Money & Life – Hank Jongen – General Manager at the Department of Human Services