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. Part-time study or work exemption for under 18s

Circumstances of exemption

This exemption is available to young people who already have a substantial commitment to part-time study and/or work, or a combination of both.

Explanation: It would be unreasonable to make these recipients give this commitment up to undertake full-time education or training.

The main factor in determining whether the exemption should be applied, is whether the recipient is engaged in a constructive combination of activities which will improve their qualifications and job prospects. Substantial commitment would generally be demonstrated by an activity load of at least 25 hours per week, or assessed as appropriate for the young person's capacity.

This exemption would be appropriate for part-time Australian Apprentices (1.1.A.324) if it would be unreasonable to expect them to give this up for full-time education or training. If they are undertaking a full-time training block, they would be considered to be full-time students.

Early school leavers (1.1.E.05) who already have a substantial commitment to part-time study and/or work, or a combination of both and who are unable to study or undertake training full-time are still expected to undertake education or training or other activities appropriate to their capacity. Activities may include participation in part-time education or training or other approved activities, such as counselling or mediation.

Act reference: SSAct section 540 Qualification for YA - general rule, section 543A(2A)(l) … is engaged in part-time work …, section 543A(2A)(q) … is in other circumstances which, in the opinion of the Secretary …

Policy reference: SS Guide 1.1.M.160 Mutual obligation requirements, 3.11.9 Mutual obligation requirements for early school leavers

Duration of exemption

The exemption applies for the duration of the part-time work and/or study/training and/or Australian Apprenticeship.

Mutual obligation requirements (1.1.M.160)

An EPP is required. Additional activities are NOT required as the young person is already undertaking an activity load appropriate to their capacity and individual circumstances.

Act reference: SSAct section 543A(2A)(l) … is engaged in part-time work …

Social Security (Employment Pathway Plan Requirements) Determination 2015

Policy reference: SS Guide 3.11.3 Suitable activities

Last reviewed: