A one off payment to help people who are experiencing difficult or extreme circumstances.
- a victim of domestic violence or other extreme circumstance
- affected by a natural disaster that is not covered by the Disaster Recovery Payment
- released from prison or psychiatric confinement, or
- arrived in Australia for the first time on a refugee or humanitarian visa
Eligibility & payment rates
You may be eligible for Crisis Payment if you:
- have established an entitlement to or are receiving an income support payment
- meet residence requirements
- are in severe financial hardship, and
- submit your claim within 7 days after the event where you:
- have left your home and cannot return because of an extreme circumstance such as domestic violence, and you have set up or intend to set up a new home
- have left your home due to a natural disaster, and you have set up or intend to set up a new home
- remain in your home after experiencing domestic violence, and the family member responsible has left or has been removed from your home
- have served at least 14 days in prison or psychiatric confinement as a result of being charged with an offence and have just been released, or
- have arrived in Australia as a humanitarian entrant for the first time
You cannot be paid Crisis Payment if you have received a Disaster Recovery Payment or another disaster relief payment for the same event.
If you have received only in-kind assistance, such as replacement of electrical goods or the provision of food, you may still get Crisis Payment.
Each disaster is different and as a result the timing and nature of financial assistance varies. Read more about how we help in an emergency.
Severe financial hardship
You are considered to be in severe financial hardship if:
- you are a member of a couple, and your available funds are less than twice the equivalent of 2 weeks of the maximum payment rate of the income support payments, or
- you are not a member of a couple, and your available funds are less than the fortnightly equivalent of 2 weeks of the maximum payment rate of your income support payment
Crisis Payment is a one off payment equal to 1 week’s payment at your existing income support payment rate. The Crisis Payment does not include extra allowances or supplements.
If you are already receiving or qualify for a payment from us, with the exception of Family Tax Benefit or Child Care Benefit, you may be able to get Crisis Payment as an extra payment.
You can usually only get Crisis Payment 4 times within any 12 months. If you are:
- a newly arrived migrant with a refugee or humanitarian visa, you can claim this payment once
- a released prisoner, the number of times you can claim this payment is not limited, but you must be eligible for a primary payment, for example Newstart Allowance, on each occasion to be eligible for Crisis Payment
To be eligible for Crisis Payment you must meet the residence requirements of your income support payment and:
- be in Australia at the time of crisis and when you submit your claim, or
- have returned to Australia and claimed within 7 days of being released from a prison outside Australia
Once you have read about eligibility the next steps are:
- register an intent to claim
- decide how you will submit your claim
- complete your forms
- complete the supporting documentation, and
- submit your claim
We will then assess your claim and let you know the outcome.
We can help you if you speak a language other than English.
We have a range of translated information in your language
We provide free interpreters and a free translation service to help you conduct your business
Call our Multilingual Phone Service to speak to someone in your language about Centrelink payments and services
Select the options that describe your circumstances then explore a suggested list of possible Centrelink and Medicare payments and services online.
Select your state and topics of interest to find links to government and community organisation support.
- Age Pension
- Bereavement Allowance
- Carer Allowance
- Carer Payment
- Centrelink online accounts
- Disability Support Pension
- Double Orphan Pension
- Family Tax Benefit
- Newstart Allowance
- Parental Leave Pay
- Parenting Payment
- Partner Allowance
- Sickness Allowance
- Special Benefit
- Widow Allowance
- Widow B Pension
- Wife Pension
- Youth Allowance