Centrelink’s Paid Parental Leave Is Changing on July 1: Here’s a Guide to the Support Payment

Centrelink’s Paid Parental Leave Is Changing on July 1: Here’s a Guide to the Support Payment

Ahead of the 2024-25 Federal Budget, news on changes to Paid Parental Leave has been a fairly hot topic in Australia. The Centrelink support payment is a hugely important one, and if you’re wondering what you can expect should you ever need to use Parental Leave Pay (or maternity leave) services, here’s a quick guide.

Centrelink maternity parental leave Australia. Credit: iStock

To begin, you’ll need to ensure you’re eligible for this Centrelink support payment.

There are different rules based on when your child was born or adopted, so read the below carefully.

For a child born or adopted before 1 July 2023:

Per Services Australia, Centrelink’s Parental Leave Pay is available if you meet the below.

You must:

  • be the primary carer for a child who was born or adopted before 1 July 2023
  • have met the income test
  • not be working during your Paid Parental Leave period except for allowable reasons
  • have met the work test
  • have registered or applied to register your child’s birth with your state or territory birth registry, if they’re a newborn
  • If you’re the child’s biological father or other parent, you’ll need to claim Dad and Partner Pay

For a child born or adopted from 1 July 2023:

You must meet the following criteria, per Services Australia.

  • be caring for a child born or adopted from 1 July 2023
  • have met the income test
  • not be working on your Parental Leave Pay days, except for allowable reasons
  • have met the work test
  • meet the residency rules
  • have registered or applied to register your child’s birth with your state or territory birth registry, if they’re a newborn.

You can read more about eligibility for this support payment here.

How much is the Paid Parental Leave payment in 2024?

For a child born or adopted before 1 July 2023:

Parental Leave Pay in Australia is currently based on the national minimum wage. At present, you will receive $882.75 per week or $176.55 a day before tax.

This payment is available for the following period, per Services Australia:

  • a continuous Paid Parental Leave period of up to 12 weeks which is 60 payable days
  • 30 Flexible Paid Parental Leave days
  • Your partner may also be eligible for Dad and Partner Pay for up to 2 weeks. This is 10 payable days

In total, this brings us to 100 available days of Paid Parental Leave through Centrelink.

For a child born or adopted from 1 July 2023:

Presently, you can receive $882.75 per week, or $176.55 a day before tax (the same as prior to July 2023).

This payment is available for the following period, per Services Australia:

  • You can get up to 100 days or paid support through this Centrelink program. If you’re a single parent, this will be reserved for you, and if you’re partnered, you can share the Parental Leave Pay with your child’s other parent how you like
  • Partnered parents will have 10 days allocated for the partner of the birth parent through Parental Leave Pay

It’s worth noting that if you have a multiple birth (more than one child), you can only claim Parental Leave Pay for one child.

For a child born or adopted before 1 July 2023:

  • The rules for these dates indicated that claims needed to be filed no later than 40 weeks after the birth or adoption of the child – the latest date for this passed in early April 2024.

For a child born or adopted from 1 July 2023:

Via Services Australia

  • You can claim from three months before the birth or adoption of your child
  • If you’re the first person to claim for this child, payment support must be claimed within 52 weeks of the child’s birth or adoption
  • If someone else has already made a claim for this child, you have up to two years from the child’s birth or adoption to claim the payment

Steps for claiming:

  1. Speak with your employer about your claim at least 10 weeks ahead of the birth or adoption. They will need to register with Centrelink for the payment.
  2. Ensure you have a Centrelink account linked to your myGov profile.
  3. You can file your claim online through myGov under ‘Make a claim or view claim status’ – ‘Make a claim’ – ‘Families’ – ‘Get Started’ and ‘Apply for Family Assistance’.

You can find more details on claiming the Centrelink support payment here.

What else should I know?

From July 1, 2024, the period for which parents can claim Parental Leave Pay will change (expect to hear about this in the 2024-25 Federal Budget.

If your child is born or adopted from this date, you may be eligible for 110 days of Paid Parental Leave, and 10 additional days for Partner Paid Leave.

In essence, Paid Parental leave is slowly increasing each year so that it will reach 26 weeks (130 days) by 2026.

Here is a table breaking down the future changes via Services Australia:

From July 1, 2024, new exemptions from the work test will also be accepted. They are, as listed by Services Australia:

  • family and domestic violence
  • a serious medical condition, for either you or an immediate family member you care for
  • a natural disaster declared by the Commonwealth or a state or territory

See more on the changes here.

In addition to this, the government has announced that as of July 1, 2025, government-funded Paid Parental Leave will have superannuation payments included (about time).


If you’d like to read up on more Centrelink support payments in Australia, here’s a guide to JobSeeker, Rent Assistance and Youth Allowance, too.


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