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Centrelink is the name of the statutory authority that administers the payment of financial assistance from the Commonwealth Government to individuals.

Legislation administered by Centrelink includes:

It can be particularly useful to refer also to the Australian Government's Guides to Social Policy Law.

Centrelink payments include a range of pensions, allowances and benefits which are paid to eligible people in certain circumstances.

Some common types of Centrelink payments include:

  • Aged pension;
  • Austudy;
  • Carer’s Pension;
  • Disability Support Pension;
  • Family Tax Benefit Payments;
  • JobSeeker Payment;
  • Parenting Payment;
  • Youth Allowance

For a full list of Centrelink payments and their eligibility criteria, see the Guide to Australian Government Payments on the Services Australia website.

Eligibility to receive a Centrelink payment will depend on a wide range of factors, including a person’s income and assets, whether they are studying, a member of a couple, a parent, have a disability, are a carer, or are a retiree, as well as many other factors [Social Security Act 1991 (Cwth) Chapter 2]. Generally speaking, to be approved for a Centrelink payment a person must also meet residence requirements, although there are some exceptions to these rules [see section 7].

Disputes over Centrelink matters most commonly arise when a person’s application for a payment is rejected, when an existing payment is reduced or cancelled, or where a person has been overpaid and Centrelink has raised a debt against them. These issues are explored further in this chapter.

Applying for and receiving Centrelink payments  :  Last Revised: Mon Mar 23rd 2020
The content of the Law Handbook is made available as a public service for information purposes only and should not be relied upon as a substitute for legal advice. See Disclaimer for details. For free and confidential legal advice in South Australia call 1300 366 424.