The Guides to Social Policy Law is a collection of publications designed to assist decision makers administering social policy law. The information contained in this publication is intended only as a guide to relevant legislation/policy. The information is accurate as at the date listed at the bottom of the page, but may be subject to change. To discuss individual circumstances please contact Services Australia. SWPP provisions


This topic explains the following provisions as they apply to claimants who are serving the SWPP:

  • duration of the SWPP
  • start date of the SWPP
  • effect of further periods of work during the SWPP
  • health care cards, and
  • lump sum payments at the end of the season.

Duration of the SWPP

There is no limit on the duration of the SWPP, although the actual duration is determined from a calculation, which depends on:

  • the claimant's or partner's seasonal or intermittent work income
  • any income the claimant or partner earned during the relevant period of seasonal (1.1.S.60) or intermittent work (1.1.I.195)
  • the period worked, and
  • the date of claim.

Start date of the SWPP

An SWPP commences on the date of the claim. If the claimant is serving more than one SWPP they are served concurrently.

Effect of further work during the SWPP

The following table explains the effect of a claimant undertaking further work while they are serving the SWPP.

If the claimant … then …
completes a period of regular non-seasonal employment which ends before the SWPP would have expired the balance of the SWPP must be served.
engages in a second seasonal job a second SWPP is calculated and applies from the date of the second claim if a second claim is made within 6 months of the second seasonal job finishing.


A HCC cannot be issued to a seasonal/intermittent worker until any preclusion period is served and they are in receipt of a payment or allowance.

Exception: A claimant receiving maximum FTB Part A is automatically entitled to a HCC. A claimant might also be entitled to a HCC as a low-income earner, however this would depend on the claimant's on-going income at the time of claim.

Act reference: SSAct section 1061ZK(4) This section applies to a person on a day if … (FTB Health Care Card), section 1061ZO(1) to (4) Qualification (Low income Health Care Card)

Lump sum payment at the end of the work period

A claimant MAY still be required to serve the SWPP, if they receive a retainer for the period of their seasonal/intermittent work and a lump sum payment at the end of it. The application of the SWPP depends on when the lump sum is actually paid, as outlined in the following table.

If the lump sum is paid … then the claimant is subject to …
BEFORE a worker lodges a claim the SWPP rules.
AFTER a worker lodges a claim

the lump sum rules.

Explanation: This means the lump sum is apportioned over the following year instead of being treated as income in the fortnight of receipt.

WHILE a worker is serving a different waiting period

Example: LAWP.

the lump sum rules.

Act reference: SSAct section 1068-G7 Lump sum payments arising from termination of employment

Policy reference: SS Guide General provisions for income from employment

Last reviewed: