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. Education or employment disadvantage (YA & DSP)

Special safety net

The special safety net criteria exists for people who are disadvantaged. To qualify as independent under this category, the person must meet all the following criteria:

  • be at least 18 years old, AND
  • have had full-time employment of at least 30 hours per week for a period of at least 12 months, or for periods that total at least 12 months, AND
  • not be living at the home of either or both of their parents, AND
  • in the Secretary's opinion, be specially disadvantaged (1.1.S.270) with respect to education or employment, AND
  • not be receiving financial support, whether directly or indirectly, from their parent/s or from another person who is acting as their guardian on a long term basis.

Examples: The following examples illustrate where independence will be established under the 'education or employment disadvantaged' category.

  • Jason, 20, has worked as a full-time delivery driver for the past 6 months. Previously, he worked 3 months as a full-time sales assistant and 3 months as a garbage collector. He left school at age 15, and does not live at home. He is an unskilled labourer and has not completed the Higher School Certificate. He receives no financial assistance from either parent. Jason qualifies as independent under the special safety net criteria.
  • Jenny, 18, left school before completing year 12, and left home a year ago. She started a full-time hairdressing apprenticeship, but became unemployed after 12 months. Jenny qualifies as independent under the special safety net criteria.

Act reference: SSAct section 1067A(11) People who are disadvantaged

Last reviewed: