*This information is correct as of 4 August 2021

With COVID-19 continuing to disrupt both individuals and businesses across New South Wales, from restrictions to strict lockdowns and everything in between, the Government has announced that that there will be varying financial assistance packages on offer to varying businesses and individuals. These packages are for those hit the hardest from Coronavirus, so continue reading if you would like to know a little more about the financial aid on offer across New South Wales.

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COVID-19 Disaster Payment 

The COVID-19 Disaster Payment is a federal payment designed to assist workers across various areas of NSW who have been affected by a state public health order, including lockdowns, movement restrictions and/or hotspot designations. The payment depends on a range of factors, including location and your personal circumstances, so the amount can change between individuals.

More information can be found here.

Pandemic Leave Disaster Payment

If you have been unable to work due to quarantine requirements, self-isolation or caring for someone with COVID-19, you may be eligible for the Pandemic Leave Disaster Payment. Full eligibility details can be found here, however it is generally for those in NSW that have been told to quarantine or self-isolate because:

  • They have COVID-19;
  • They have been in close contact with a person who has COVID-19;
  • They care for a child, 16 years or under, who has COVID-19; and/or
  • They care for a child, 16 years or under, who’s been in close contact with a person who has COVID-19.

Additional information can be found here.

Crisis Payment

A Crisis Payment for those in NSW is a one-off lump sum which can be given to those in extreme financial hardship who have experienced one of the following circumstances:

  • They, or someone they are caring for, has been required to quarantine or self-isolate due to COVID-19;
  • Experienced an incident of family and domestic violence;
  • Had to leave home because of a natural or other disaster not covered by a disaster relief payment;
  • Arrived in Australia as a Humanitarian Entrant for the first time; or
  • Released from prison or psychiatric confinement.

Other eligibility criteria also apply. In most cases, Services Australia must be contacted within 7 days of the extreme circumstance occurring. However, if the extreme circumstance is due to COVID-19, contact must be made within 14 days. Further information about the Crisis Payment can be found here.

Crisis Payment for National Health Emergency (COVID-19)

A Crisis Payment is available specifically for those affected by COVID-19. Known as the Crisis Payment for National Health Emergency (COVID-19), it is a one-off payment and eligibility includes:

  • eligible for an income support payment or ABSTUDY Living Allowance; and
  • in severe financial hardship; and
  • in Australia when claiming.

More information can be found at the Services Australia website here.

Special Benefit

Finally, there is the Special Benefit financial payment. This is applicable to those in NSW who are not eligible for any other payments from Services Australia, however are experiencing financial hardship for reasons beyond an individuals control. This is only available to those who are ineligible for all other income support payments - more information can be found here.

COVID Financial Aid

If you are unsure if you are eligible for any payments, head to the If You Need a Payment page here and find out more information and eligibility requirements.

Assistance for Retirees

If you have retired, there are two changes that have been made to assist during COVID-19:

  • Superannuation minimum drawdown requirements: For the 2019-20, 2020-21 and 2021-22 income years, the Government is reducing the minimum drawdown requirements by 50%; and
  • Deeming rates for pensioners: As of 1 May 2020, the lower deeming rate for pensioners is 0.25% and the upper deeming rate is 2.25%.

Additional information can be found here.


*This information is to be used as a guide only. Always complete your own research and speak to the relevant qualified professionals before making any decisions, as every set of circumstances differs.