Primary claimant for PLP - birth mother


Generally the birth mother of a child is the primary carer (1.1.P.230) of the child and the primary claimant of PLP, although other carers may be the primary claimant in particular circumstances as prescribed by the PPL Rules.

Priority of birth mother as primary claimant

The birth mother is given priority in eligibility for PLP as the primary claimant because she requires time to recover physically from birth, and to establish breastfeeding. For a birth mother primary carer to be entitled to PLP, she must have remained the child's primary carer since the birth of her child. Other carers of children as the result of changed arrangements, such as adoptive parents, may be able to claim PLP if they are the primary carer of a child.

Eligibility criteria

Birth mothers who are primary carers and primary claimants for PLP must meet eligibility criteria relating to:

They must:

  • have been the primary carer of the child since the child's birth (unless their child is stillborn or has died, or they are the birth mother in an adoption or surrogacy situation, or they are temporarily unable to care for their child or have lost care of their child without their consent), and
  • not have worked since becoming the primary carer (not applicable if their child was stillborn or has died, if they have lost care of their child without their consent, and if they are a defence force member or law enforcement officer and they have been compulsorily recalled to duty).

Note: From 1 January 2019, a NARWP applies to PLP. There are a range of exemptions from the effect of the NARWP for PLP and situations where the NARWP does not apply (

Act reference: PPLAct section 31 When a person is eligible for parental leave pay, section 31A Newly arrived resident's waiting period, section 47 When a person is the primary carer of a child, section 54 Who can make a primary claim, secondary claim or tertiary claim

PPL Rules Part 2-3 Eligibility for PLP, Part 2-4 Claims for PLP

Policy reference: PPL Guide 2.2.1 PLP eligibility overview, 2.2.2 PPL scheme work test for PLP, 2.2.3 PPL scheme income test for PLP, 2.2.4 PPL scheme Australian residency test & absences from Australia for PLP, NARWP for PLP & DAPP, 2.2.13 Return to work & when paid work is for a permissible purpose for PLP

Last reviewed: 20 March 2019