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- 16 to 21 years old and looking for full-time work or undertaking approved activities
- 18 to 24 years old and studying full-time
- 16 and 17 years old and have completed year 12 or equivalent, need to live away from home in order to study, or considered independent for Youth Allowance
- 16 to 24 years old and undertaking a full-time Australian Apprenticeship
Eligibility and payment rates
Eligibility for Youth Allowance
Youth Allowance provides financial help for young people who are studying full-time, undertaking a full-time Australian Apprenticeship, training, looking for work or sick.
Payment rates for Youth Allowance
Youth Allowance payment rates are a guide only. An income and assets test will be used to work out how much you can get. If you are dependent, the parental-means test will apply. If you are a dependent student less than 18 years, your payments will usually be paid to a parent or guardian.
|Your circumstances||Your maximum fortnightly payment|
|single, with no children, under 18 years, and living at parental home||$223.00|
|single, with no children, under 18 years, and required to live away from parental home to study undertake training or look for work||$407.50|
|single, with no children, 18 years or more, and living at parental home||$268.20|
|single, with no children, 18 years or more, and required to live away from parental home||$407.50|
|single, with children||$533.80|
|member of a couple, with no children||$407.50|
|member of a couple, with children||$447.40|
Single job seeker principal carer granted an activity test exemption for either:
Special payment rates
The special rates below apply if you are more than 22 years old, commencing full-time study, and are:
- a long-term income support recipient who is receiving or has received an income support payment, other than a student payment, for at least 26 out of the last 39 weeks, or
- a migrant student who does not speak English as a first language and is undertaking an approved course in English
|Your circumstances||Your maximum fortnightly payment|
|single, and living at parental home||$329.20|
|single, and required to live away from parental home||$495.00|
|member of a couple, with no children||$447.40|
From time to time, your Youth Allowance payment is reviewed. The amount you receive may be adjusted because your circumstances or a family member's circumstances change. This may include a change in your income, moving house, or separating from your partner.
If you are a dependant and receiving Youth Allowance, we will request details of your parents' taxable income in September each year.
If you are a student, we will request information about your future study intentions 4 weeks before your course is due to finish. You can provide this information online or with the Express Plus Students mobile app.
Income and assets test for Youth Allowance
The amount of Youth Allowance you can receive will depend upon your personal circumstances.
Residency requirements for Youth Allowance
To meet residency requirements you must be an Australian resident and in Australia on the day that you lodge your claim.
To be an Australian resident, you must be living in Australia as:
- an Australian citizen
- the holder of a permanent resident visa
- the holder of a special-category visa - that is, someone with a New Zealand passport living in Australia, or
- a New Zealand citizen who was in Australia on 26 February 2001 or for 12 months in the two years immediately before that date, or who was assessed before 26 February 2004 as 'protected'
Newly arrived residents generally have a 2 year waiting period before they can be granted Youth Allowance. Some exemptions apply for refugees, holders of certain other permanent visas, Australian citizens, and in some circumstances their partners and dependent children.
Higher rates of Youth Allowance when living away from home
If you need to live away from your parents' home in order to study or train, you may be eligible for the higher away from home rate of Youth Allowance.
Independence for Youth Allowance
If you apply for Youth Allowance, you will be assessed as being either dependent or independent. If you are dependent, the parental means test applies.
Study loads for Youth Allowance
To receive Youth Allowance as a student, you must be studying an approved course at an approved institution. In most cases, you need to be undertaking a full-time study load.
Allowable time for studying while receiving Youth Allowance
Allowable time is the length of time you can receive Youth Allowance while studying. Allowable time is based on the minimum time it would normally take to complete the course you are currently studying.
Other benefits while receiving Youth Allowance
If you qualify for Youth Allowance, you may be entitled to other payments and services, such as:
Once you have read about eligibility the next steps are:
- begin a claim
- submit your claim
- provide your supporting documentation
- we will assess your claim and let you know the outcome
Managing your payment
Change of circumstances while receiving Youth Allowance
You need to tell us within 14 days if your circumstances change while you are receiving Youth Allowance.
Reporting income while receiving Youth Allowance
If you are receiving Youth Allowance and you are working, you must report your employment income to us every fortnight, even if your income is zero.
For full-time students, your reporting day will be outlined in your Reporting and Income Statement, which is sent to you every three months. This also outlines what information you need to provide us and the balance of your Income Bank.
If you report your income by 5 pm on your reporting day, you will receive your payment on the next working day.
How to report your income
If you are a full-time student you can report your income in the following ways:
Advance payment options
You may be eligible to receive part of your Centrelink payment in advance. Accessing an advance payment depends on the type of payment you receive, how long you have been receiving it and the amount that you receive.
Payments paid while outside Australia
There are rules about getting your payment when you leave Australia.
Information you need to know about your claim for Austudy and Youth Allowance form (CI004)
This booklet contains information you may need to know about your claim for Austudy and Youth Allowance.
Self service options
Our self service options are a quick and effective way to deal with us. You can use self service where it's convenient to you and manage things yourself:
- online - you need to register to use some of the services, then you can do many things where and when it suits you
- on your mobile device - our Express Plus mobile apps are simple, fast and convenient, giving you more choices for dealing with Centrelink
- on the phone - you can self-register for Centrelink Phone Self Service
- using a self service terminal at one of our Service Centres
Youth Allowance eligibility video
Online roadmap video
Language, Literacy and Numeracy Program
Language, literacy and numeracy training is available to people who receive certain Centrelink payments. The training can improve your chances of getting and keeping a job by developing speaking, reading, writing and basic maths skills.