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
Your eligibility for Crisis Payment is based on your current circumstances - the reason why you are experiencing severe financial hardship.
You may be eligible for Crisis Payment if you:
- are eligible for or are receiving an income support payment
- meet residence requirements
- are in severe financial hardship, and
- submit your claim within 7 days of 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 submit a claim for 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
If you are not a member of a couple we will consider you to be in severe financial hardship if your available funds total less than 2 weeks of the maximum rate of your income support payment.
If you are a member of a couple, we will consider you to be in severe financial hardship if your available funds total less than 4 weeks of the maximum rate of your income support payment.
Crisis Payment is a one off payment equal to a 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 are eligible for an income support payment from us, you may submit a claim for Crisis Payment. If you receive Family Tax Benefit or Child Care Benefit, you must also be receiving an additional income support payment.
The number of times you can receive Crisis Payment depends on the reason you are making the claim. If you are:
- a newly arrived migrant with a refugee or humanitarian visa, you can only claim once
- a released prisoner then you can claim each time you are released from prison - you must have been held for more than 14 days and be eligible for an income support payment, such as Newstart Allowance, each time you claim, or
- experiencing extreme circumstances, you can receive a maximum of 4 Crisis Payments within a 12 month period
To be eligible for Crisis Payment you must meet the residence requirements 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
Once you have read about eligibility the next steps are:
- register an intent to claim
- choose your claiming option
- provide supporting documents
- submit your claim
- we will assess your claim and let you know the outcome
Select the options that describe your circumstances, then explore a 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