Secondary claimant for PLP in exceptional circumstances - any other person


The PPL rules (1.1.P.220) prescribe the exceptional circumstances (1.1.E.100) in which any person who has primary care of the child may become a secondary claimant and receive the balance of the primary claimant's PLP in respect of the child. The specific circumstances relate to situations where the primary claimant can no longer care for the child, either because of incapacity or for legal reasons.

Note: A secondary claimant who is the partner of a primary claimant birth mother or primary claimant adoptive parent, or the child's other legal parent or that person's partner, who does not meet the eligibility criteria applying to secondary claimants in normal circumstances ( may meet the exceptional circumstances eligibility criteria.

Eligibility criteria

Secondary claimants in exceptional circumstances must meet the Australian residency test (1.1.A.110).

However, where the Australian residency test applies by reference to the child's DOB for a birth mother claimant, or date of placement for an adoptive parent primary claimant, the secondary claimant must meet the test from the date the individual anticipates becoming, or became the child's primary carer.

The person must:

  • be the primary carer of the child and have become the primary carer of the child on the day after the primary claimant ceased to provide such care, i.e. this must be a continuous block of care transitioning from one carer to another without any breaks (other than where the person is temporarily unable to be the primary carer (1.1.T.50) or where they have lost care for the child (1.1.L.30)), and
  • not have worked since becoming the primary carer (not applicable in cases where they lost care of the child without their consent, where they are a defence force member or a law enforcement officer and they have been compulsorily recalled to duty, or if they worked immediately after the change in care occurred while care arrangements were being settled).

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 (

Exceptional circumstances criteria

To be eligible as a secondary claimant in exceptional circumstances, the child must not have been entrusted to the person's care or the care of their partner because of a decision of a state or territory child protection agency under its relevant legislation, and the person must have, and expect to continue to have the care of the child for at least 26 weeks.

In addition:

  • if the person is the partner of the primary claimant for the child, the primary claimant must be or be likely to be incapable of caring for the child (1.1.I.05) for at least 26 weeks
  • if the person is not the partner of the primary claimant
    • both the primary claimant and the primary claimant's partner must be or be likely to be incapable of caring for the child for at least 26 weeks, or
    • the Secretary must be satisfied on reasonable grounds that
      • the person became the primary carer in special circumstances
      • it would be unreasonable (1.1.U.10) for the birth mother or other adoptive parent to care for the child, and
      • it is in the interests of the child (1.1.I.90) for the person to care for the child.

Act reference: PPLAct section 31A Newly arrived resident's waiting period, section 45 When a person satisfies the Australian residency test, section 47 When a person is the primary carer of a child, section 48 When a person returns to work, section 276 How this Act applies to claims made in exceptional circumstances

PPL Rules Subdivision When a secondary claimant is eligible for PLP, Subdivision Exceptional circumstances for secondary claims, Subdivision When a person is exempt from newly arrived resident's waiting period

Policy reference: PPL Guide 2.2.1 PLP eligibility overview, NARWP for PLP & DAPP

Last reviewed: 6 May 2019