Centrelink Crisis Payment

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Updated July 2017

Centrelink Crisis Payment

A one off support payment if you’re in difficult or extreme circumstances.

Eligibility basics

This payment can help if you:

  • leave a violent relationship
  • get out of jail
  • have been in a psychiatric institution
  • are on a refugee or humanitarian visa
  • go through a natural disaster not covered by the Disaster Recovery Payment

Eligibility payment rates

Who can get it?
Crisis Payment can help if you:

  • get out of jail
  • are experiencing family and domestic violence
  • have been in prison or psychiatric confinement for 14 days
  • have severe financial hardship
  • are a Humanitarian entrant in Australia for the first time
  • go through a natural disaster not covered by the Disaster Recovery Payment
  • are eligible for an income support payment - not including Family Tax Benefit or Child Care Benefit

If you get Family Tax Benefit or Child Care Benefit, you must also get another income support ;payment to be eligible for a crisis payment.

Other rules to meet
You must meet residence rules.
You must apply or make an intent to claim within 7 days of your crisis.

Who can’t get it
You can’t get Crisis Payment if you’ve received a Disaster Recovery Payment or another disaster relief payment for the same event.

Severe financial hardship
You’re in severe financial hardship if you’re:

  • single and your funds total less than 2 weeks of the highest rate of your income support payment
  • part of a couple and your funds total less than 4 weeks of the highest rate of your income support payment

Help in an emergency
Each disaster is different so the timing and type of financial help varies.
If you only got in-kind help, like new electrical goods or food, you can still claim for Crisis Payment.
Read more about how we help in an emergency .

How much you can get and how often

This one off payment is equal to a week’s pay at your existing income support payment rate.
It doesn’t include extra allowances or supplements.

How often you can claim
The number of times you can get Crisis Payment depends on the reason you’re making the claim. If you:

  • have arrived in Australia on a refugee or humanitarian visa, you can only claim once
  • are a released prisoner you can claim each time you leave prison you must be in custody for more than 14 days and remain eligible for an income support payment each time you claim
  • are going through extreme circumstances, you can get up to 4 payments over 12 months

Residence rules

On the day you claim Crisis Payment you must meet the residence rules of your income support payment and:

  • be in Australia when the event occurred and when you submit your claim, or
  • have returned to Australia and claimed within 7 days of being released from a prison outside Australia

Claiming

Check if you’re eligible before you start your claim.
Then:

  • find out what you need before you start your claim
  • fill in your claim form
  • submit the form and other documents we ask for
  • wait for us to assess your claim and tell you the result

Resources

Services
We can help you if you are going through family and domestic violence or extreme circumstances.
We’ll help you get Crisis Payment and access:

Who runs it?

Centrelink

Contact

To find your nearest Centrelink Customer Service Centre.
Ph: 13 28 50
Web: Centrelink Centrelink Crisis Payment.