3.6.5.20 Qualification for SA - students

Note: SA closed to all new entrants on 20 March 2020 and ceases on 20 September 2020.

Those receiving SA before 20 March 2020 will continue to receive the payment for the length of their medical certificate, as long as they remain eligible. SA recipients who require income support after this time may transfer to JSP (1.2.1.05) or another income support payment, if eligible. Information in this topic only relates to the period prior to 20 March 2020.

Qualification (1.1.Q.10)

To qualify for SA, students who become incapacitated for study must have:

  • deferred from their course of study, AND
  • met the other qualification criteria, AND
  • been aged at least 22 years AND in receipt of ABSTUDY, OR
  • been aged at least 25 years AND in receipt of Austudy.

Explanation: The act of deferral is taken to indicate a commitment to resuming full-time studies when the temporary incapacity ends.

Students enrolled in a course of education that was part of a rehabilitation program who become incapacitated for study may have also qualified for SA.

Students who do not qualify for SA

Students did NOT qualify for SA if they:

  • were currently enrolled in a course of education, OR
  • had completed, abandoned or withdrawn from their course, OR
  • were less than 22 years old, OR
  • were between 22 and 25 years old AND in receipt of YA.

Explanation: For students who had completed, abandoned or withdrawn from their course of education due to illness, YA (incapacitated) is the appropriate payment if they were less than 22 years old or if they were between 22 and 25 years old, JSP (incapacitated) is the appropriate payment.

Students who were currently enrolled in a course of education and in receipt of YA (student) may have been granted an exemption from full-time study or reduction in their study load due to a temporary incapacity (1.1.T.70).

Act reference: SSAct section 666 Qualification for SA, section 685 Full-time students, section 542 Situations in which a person is not required to satisfy the activity test

Policy reference: SS Guide 3.6.5.10 Qualification for SA, 3.2.3.10 Qualification for YA, 3.11.5.10 Temporary incapacity

Last reviewed: 20 March 2020