COVID-19 Update - Centrelink Assistance
Under the current difficult circumstances, where people are requiring income support due to the impact of COVID-19 on businesses and employment, we are aware there is high demand for assistance from Centrelink. Below is information for new and existing Centrelink customers on how to lodge an intent to claim.
New Centrelink customers:
1. Please start your claim online through my.gov.au
2. You must have a myGov account before you can lodge the intent to claim
3. Your myGov account must be linked to Medicare or the ATO
4. Follow the prompt to register you intention to claim
5. Services Australia will call you to process your claim, including setting up a Customer Reference Number (CRN)
*There is no longer a requirement to provide employment separation certificates to claim the JobSeeker payment.
Centrelink New Customers Fact Sheet
Current Centrelink customers:
You do not need to do anything to receive the Economic Support Payment or Coronvirus Supplement. These will be paid automatically to you if you are on an eligible payment.
Centrelink Existing Customers Fact Sheet
Support for Sole Traders
The Government is expanding the eligibility criteria for JobSeeker Payment to support sole traders and Australians who are self-employed if their income is negatively affected by the economic impact of the Coronavirus.
Under temporary changes to social security rules, sole traders will be encouraged to keep their business operating but may be able to access
income support should their earnings take a significant hit.
The changes mean that sole traders who were now eligible for JobSeeker or Youth Allowance (other) would also receive the $550 fortnightly Coronavirus supplement.
Previously to determine if a self-employed person was unemployed for the purpose of accessing social security payments they had to be
genuinely willing to seek and be available to take up alternative work, effectively requiring their business to close. If someone remained
committed to continuing with their business then they were not considered unemployed and could not access payments.
This test has been temporarily removed to allow sole traders to continue operating. Income testing will apply consistent with current
arrangements which allows individuals to earn more than $1,000 per fortnight before losing access to payment.
Under the temporary arrangements a range of JobSeeker Payment eligibility criteria has been relaxed including waiving the assets test, liquid
assets waiting period, seasonal work preclusion period and newly arrived residents’ waiting period.
Information is available here - www.dss.gov.au/coronavirus.
For urgent assistance, Services Australia phone line hours are Monday to Friday from 8am-8pm and on weekends from 9am-5pm.
Services Australia JobSeeker phone line – 132 850.
For all other Services Australia enquiries go to www.servicesaustralia.gov.au.