1. Eligibility criteria
You may be eligible for Sickness Allowance if you are unable to work due to a temporary illness or accident. You must be:
- 22 years or older, but under age pension age, and have a job or getting ABSTUDY as a full time student, or
- 25 years or older, but under age pension age, and getting Austudy as a full time student, and
- able to meet income and asset test requirements
- able to meet residence requirements
- able to provide a medical certificate from your doctor stating you can’t work or study.
There may be a waiting period.
You may be exempt from serving the ordinary waiting period if you:
- reclaim a payment within 13 weeks of receiving an income support payment or a Department of Veterans’ Affairs Service Pension
- are doing an approved work or study program such as the New Enterprise Incentive Scheme
- are undertaking a rehabilitation program
Centrelink may waive the ordinary waiting period if you’re experiencing severe financial hardship.
If you were working, you may be required to take unused sick leave before becoming eligible for a Sickness Allowance.
2. Making a claim
Intent to claim
It is best to call Centrelink on the People with disability line or visit a service centre to register your intent to claim as a first step.
If you can’t claim online, call us on the People with disability line
You can claim Sickness Allowance online. If you have an online account you can use that or you can Register
You don’t need to complete the online claim in one session. You can save your answers and do your claim later. You’re only asked questions relevant to your circumstances.
If you can’t claim online:
If you can’t claim online, complete the Claim for Sickness Allowance form. If you don’t have access to a printer, pick up a form from a service centre or call the People with disability line and it will be posted to you.
You may need to provide some documents to support your claim including:
- Income and Assets form
- Confirmation of identity documents
- a medical certificate from your treating doctor
Centrelink may also ask you to complete other forms including:
|If you||Complete this form|
|Are self-employed or involved in a business||Business details|
|Have involvement in a private company||Private company details|
|Have involvement in a private trust||Private trust details|
|Currently pay rent where you live||Rent Certificate – only if we give you one to complete|
|Are a resident in Australia or another country||Residence in Australia and other countries|
|Have separated from your partner since you last claimed a payment or service||Separation details|
|Have recently left your employment||Employment Separation Certificate|
Next Section: Disability Support Pension