What financial support is available and how to get it



Victoria was plunged into an instant five-day lockdown on Thursday after a cluster of COVID-19 infections rose to more than a dozen cases.

A full list of restrictions and reasons for leaving home is available here.

But what financial support and relief from bills is available for those struggling to make ends meet during the state’s fifth lockdown?

Locked up in Sydney? Read our Sydney specific guide here.

Victoria Lockdown: Cash Payments

Cash payments are available to residents affected by Victoria’s fifth foreclosure, provided they meet certain criteria.

COVID-19 Disaster Payments

The federal government introduced the COVID-19 disaster payment in June in response to the latest lockdown in Victoria.

He then changed the schedule on Thursday night, announcing that the payments would be co-funded with the Victoria state government.

People who lost between 8 and 20 hours of work are eligible for a payment of $ 375, which rises to $ 600 for those who lost 20 or more hours of work.

Previously, a $ 10,000 liquid asset test applied, but it was dropped Thursday night.

Payment is available to people aged 17 or older who reside in a Commonwealth-declared COVID-19 hotspot and who have lost their jobs as a direct result of a government lockdown.

It will be paid in arrears from July 23 after submitting requests to ServicesAustralia.

But the payment is not available to people who are receiving other types of income support such as JobSeeker or the Pandemic Disaster Payment. It doesn’t start until the eighth day of a lockdown, and applicants should not have “appropriate paid leave rights”.

You can request payment online through your MyGov account.

Paying for Pandemic Disaster Leave

Residents required to self-isolate, self-quarantine or care for someone with COVID-19 may be eligible for lump sum payments worth $ 1,500 over 14 days.

But the payment is not available to people who receive income from paid work or who already receive an income support payment from the federal government.

Applicants should also not be entitled to appropriate leave, such as sick leave or personal leave.

Services Australia said the easiest way to claim payment was over the phone. The number is 180 22 66.

A full list of eligibility requirements is available here.

Test the isolation payment

Victorians who must self-isolate while awaiting a COVID-19 test result can request a payment of $ 450.

You must be 17 or older, tested for COVID-19, or be a caregiver for someone who has been tested in Victoria.

You must also have missed work due to isolation as well and received no income or salary payments during your period of isolation.

Those who receive federal income support are also not eligible.

You can apply online through the Department of Employment, Constituencies and Regions website.

reduction of the bill

Relief is available for Victorian residents unable to pay their bills during the extended lockdown.

Bank loan deferrals

Australia’s big four banks – Commonwealth Bank, ANZ, Westpac and NAB – are offering deferrals on loans to people affected or recently affected by lockdowns.

Relief is available on request (so it’s best to call your bank).

Home loan deferrals will be granted on a monthly basis while business loan deferrals of up to three months are available for SMEs.

Banks have also offered to waive fees and notice periods on cash deposit and farm management accounts for up to three months, and have pledged to reimburse merchant terminal fees for up to three months as well.

To ask for help, call your bank or contact them online.

Interest Free Loan Program

Low-income households in Victoria can access interest-free loans of up to $ 3,000 to help pay rent and utilities.

The loans are repayable over 24 months through the interest free loans site.

Reduction of the energy bill

Victorians can access grants to help pay overdue utility bills during the lockdown.

You must have an eligible concession card, such as a retirement, health care, or veterans gold card.

The subsidy is valued at up to $ 650 on each utility bill, with a separate request for each service (electricity, gas and water).

To request an application, the Victorian government advises contacting your utility retailers.

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