2.2.2.25 Hazardous jobs for PLP

The work test period for primary claimants in hazardous jobs

Where a primary claimant does not meet the work test because they ceased working in a hazardous job (e.g. jockeys, boxers or miners), the work test period will be the 392 days prior to the day the claimant is no longer performing work in the hazardous job.

From 1 January 2020, for the purposes of determining the eligibility of a claimant or making an initial eligibility determination, the work test period for a primary claimant will be the 392 days immediately before the day they ceased work if:

  • the primary claimant would not satisfy the usual work test, and
  • the primary claimant is pregnant or is the birth mother of the child, and
  • the primary claimant is performing or performed paid work of a particular kind before the child is born, and
  • the primary claimant will cease or ceased performing that kind of work on a particular day because of hazards connected with that kind of work that pose or posed a risk to the pregnancy, and
  • any conditions prescribed by the PPL Rules are satisfied.

The primary claimant must satisfy the work test requirements (2.2.2.10) during this period in order to meet the work test.

Evidence to support a claim under the dangerous jobs provision

Claimants may be asked to provide evidence to Centrelink at the time of their claim that shows:

  • Before their child was born they worked in a particular job. This can include
    • a letter from their employer, or
    • a copy of their contract/workplace agreement
    • a statutory declaration of their job description (for self-employed people).

AND

  • They stopped working because of hazards connected with the work which posed a risk to their pregnancy. This can include
    • a medical certificate, or
    • a letter from their employer, or
    • a copy of their Industry regulations or guidelines that confirm that they are unable to continue working due to the hazardous nature of their job.

Example 1: Sarah was employed as a jockey and was required to train and race horses.

On 3 March 2020, Sarah found out she was in the early stages of her pregnancy and she told her employer. As part of her industry agreement, Sarah was advised that she would have to cease work immediately due to the high risk of falling from the horse and the additional risk of abdominal trauma and placental abruption.

Sarah stopped work early due to a work place hazard to her pregnancy as a jockey. Sarah provided proof from her employer confirming that she was employed as a jockey and also a copy of the industry regulations to support her claim.

As Sarah met the dangerous job provision, her work test period can be moved to the 13 month period prior to the date she stopped work due to the hazard, 3 February 2019 to 3 March 2020. If Sarah meets the work test in her new work test period, she will meet the initial eligibility for PLP.

Example 2: Amy was employed as a miner. She was required to work underground with exposure to chemicals and physically demanding tasks.

On 10 June 2020, Amy found out she was 8 weeks pregnant and advised her employer. Amy's workplace agreement states that she had to stop work immediately due to the hazardous nature of her job and the risk to her unborn child.

Amy started a new job with the local bakery 1 October 2020. Amy's last day with the bakery was the 31 December 2020 before her baby's due date of 20 January 2021. Amy lodged a pre-birth claim for PPL, her work test period is from 25 December 2019 to 20 January 2021. Amy will not meet the work test due to her having more than a consecutive 12 week gap between 2 work days in her work test period.

Amy can still meet the PPL work test under the dangerous job provision if she can provide evidence from the mining company and her doctor to support her claim.

Amy provides proof from her employer that she was employed as an underground miner and a copy of her workplace agreement. She also provided a letter from her doctor to support her claim confirming the danger to her unborn child had she continued working in that field.

Amy met the dangerous job provision and her work test period was moved to the 13 month period prior to the date she stopped work as a miner, 15 May 2019 to the 10 June 2020. Amy still needs to meet the work test in her new work test period.

Act reference: PPLAct section 33(2) The work test period, section 35A Hours of qualifying work on a day in a PPL or DAPP period

Policy reference: PPL Guide 2.2.2 PPL scheme work test for PLP, 6.2 Initial eligibility & payability determinations for PLP

Last reviewed: 2 January 2020