Program of Support for DSP

You may need to take part in a Program of Support for at least 18 months in the 3 years before you claim Disability Support Pension.

Program of Support providers

Programs of Support include:

These providers work with you to help you prepare for, find and keep a job. This may include help with looking for jobs, studying, work experience or rehabilitation.

Other programs may also count if you started the program before 5 January 2015.

Participation in a Program of Support

To show you’ve actively participated in a Program of Support you must comply with the program and show either of the following:

  • you participated in the program for at least 18 months (78 weeks) in the 3 years before claiming
  • if the length of the program was less than 18 months, you completed the program, or
  • your condition stopped you from improving your ability to prepare for, find and keep a job by continuing to participate in the program

You must actively participate in a Program of Support for it to count. Any periods where your participation stops don’t count.

Example 1 – Dev’s program stopped due to his condition

Dev is 26 years old. He worked in the construction industry until he suffered a head injury in a car accident. After recovering from his injury, Dev had difficulty with concentration and memory. He was unable to go back to his job as a carpenter. However, he was happy to look for work with help from an employment services provider.

Unfortunately, Dev’s condition got worse over time. He then developed epilepsy and the government suspended his driver’s license. Dev had only done 50 weeks of the Program of Support in the 3 years before claiming DSP.

Dev attends a Job Capacity Assessment. The assessor looks at the medical evidence and gives Dev a 10 point impairment rating under Table 7 for the functional impact of his head injury. He also has a 10 point rating under Table 15 for the functional impact of his seizures. Dev’s overall impairment rating is 20 points split over 2 tables.

Dev needs to show he has actively taken part in a Program of Support for at least 18 months in the 3 years before claiming DSP. Dev’s medical conditions meant he couldn’t participate in the program.

We still consider Dev to have completed a Program of Support because the employment services provider stopped the program due to Dev’s medical conditions.

Example 2 – Tony didn’t start a program

Tony has had obesity since his teens. He worked as a storeman for 35 years. He’s been finding it more difficult to do physical work and resigns. He applies for DSP a few months later.

Tony attends a Job Capacity Assessment. The assessor looks at the medical evidence and gives Tony a 10 point impairment rating under Table 1 for fatigue caused by obesity. He also has a 10 point rating under Table 4 for back pain secondary to obesity. Tony’s overall impairment rating is 20 points split over 2 tables.

Tony needs to show he’s actively taken part in a Program of Support for at least 18 months in the 3 years before claiming DSP. Tony never started a Program of Support because he was working shortly before claiming DSP.

Tony isn’t eligible for DSP because he never started a Program of Support.

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Page last updated: 24 November 2017