The Government’s whole-of-economy support measures during the COVID-19 response include changes to JobSeeker.

See if your circumstances are reflected below or visit Services Australia’s Job seekers and coronavirus web page.

Scenarios

Asha, freelance writer

Scenario: Asha is a single parent of a teenage child and is self-employed as a freelance writer whose work is based on contracts as they arise. This includes written communications for small arts organisations. Asha represents herself and does not employ any staff. Her contracts have declined due to the coronavirus impacts on the economy, and she is earning $450 a fortnight.

What financial support is available? Asha will receive an income-tested JobSeeker Payment of $473.60, Energy Supplement of $9.50, and Pharmaceutical Allowance of $6.20, coming to an income support payment of $489.30. She also receives $242.20 of Family Tax Benefit Part A, Family Tax Benefit Rent Assistance of $164.08 and $110.60 of Family Tax Benefit Part B. With the Coronavirus Supplement of $550 added, Asha’s total fortnightly income (including her earnings) is $2,006.18.

Ahmad, theatre casual

Scenario: Ahmad works as a casual at a number of performing arts and theatre companies. He has been with all companies for less than one year. Due to the shutdown of non-essential services and public gatherings, he loses all of his income. Ahmad’s partner is also unemployed.

What financial support is available? Ahmad will receive a JobSeeker Payment of $510.80, Rent Assistance of $65.80, and Energy Supplement of $7.90, coming to an income support payment of $584.50 a fortnight. Ahmad will also receive the Coronavirus Supplement of $550, bringing his total fortnightly income to $1,134.50.

Lauren, production designer

Scenario: Lauren is a production designer who works in the screen industry as a freelancer. She does not have an ABN and is not considered a Sole Trader, but works contract to contract for different production companies as a non-ongoing employee. She is receiving no income as the production she was working on has stopped during to COVID-19 restrictions.

What financial support is available? Lauren is not eligible for JobSeeker as her partner earns over the payment threshold.

Susan, sole trader

Scenario: Susan is a principal carer and single parent of a young child. She works as a community arts practitioner and is a Sole Trader. She provides consultancy services to local councils and arts organisations and also delivers art therapy classes in an aged care home. As non‑essential services have been shut down and there are restrictions on visiting aged care homes, Susan now has no source of income.

What financial support is available? Susan may be eligible for a number of support measures, such as the Parenting Payment or JobKeeper.

Susan will receive Parenting Payment Single of $790.10, Energy Supplement of $12.00, and Pharmaceutical Allowance of $6.20. She also receives $186.20 of Family Tax Benefit Part A, $110.60 of Family Tax Benefit Part B and Rent Assistance of $164.08. This comes to an income support payment of $1269.18. Susan will also receive the Coronavirus Supplement of $550, bringing her total fortnightly income to $1,819.18.