Disaster Recovery Allowance is a short term payment to help you if a declared disaster directly affects your income. You can get it for a maximum of 13 weeks. It’s payable from the date you lose income as a direct result of Queensland Bushfires, September 2019. Disaster Recovery Allowance is a taxable payment. You can ask us to withhold voluntary tax deductions from your payments. If you get Disaster Recovery Allowance you might be able to access Beneficiary Tax Offset. This reduces the amount of tax you may have to pay. You’ll need to contact the Australian Taxation Office to find out more about this.
Local Government Areas involved:
- Gold Coast
- Lockyer Valley
- Scenic Rim
- Southern Downs
The maximum payment rate is the equivalent of Newstart or Youth Allowance, based on your circumstances. Your rate of payment will be affected by your income prior to and following the disaster. If you’re independent, we’ll determine your maximum rate of payment by your accommodation and personal circumstances.
The income threshold is the most you can earn in the fortnight after your loss of income. You need to show you’ll earn less than the relevant threshold amount in that period.
Complete the following steps to claim the Disaster Recovery Allowance.
1. Get ready to claim
The fastest way to claim is over the phone.
To claim, either:
- call us on 180 22 66 where we can take your claim
- print and complete the Eastern Queensland Bushfires, November 2019 – Disaster Recovery Allowance claim form
- go to a service centre.
Phone lines are open 8 am to 8 pm (local time) Monday to Friday and 8 am to 5 pm (local time) Saturday and Sunday.
Call us on 131 202 to talk to us in languages other than English.
2. Get your documents ready
You’ll need to provide evidence supporting the claimed loss of income. For example:
- pay slips from an employer
- bank statements showing previous bank deposits from an employer
- a letter from your employer
- profit and loss statements
- income tax returns
- other account documents identifying cash flow.
If you’re having trouble getting these documents you should still lodge a claim without delay. You can provide your supporting documents to us within 28 days.
You may also need to confirm your identity. We’ll tell you how to do it during the claim process.
You will need to provide one document showing Proof of Birth or Proof of Arrival in Australia. Alternatively, you can provide any other approved documents that add up to the value of 50 points. For example:
- driver’s licence (40 points)
- bank card/statement (40 points)
- Medicare card (20 points).
3. Submit your claim
Remember, the fastest way to claim is over the phone.
If you print and complete a claim form, you can submit it and any supporting documents:
- in person at a service centre
- by faxing them to 1300 727 760
- by posting them to:
Emergency Processing Centre
Reply Paid 7815
Canberra BC ACT 2610
Please make sure your name is on your supporting documents so we can identify them
More grants in relation to Bushfires can be found here.
- be 16 years or older at the time of the fire and not a dependent child
- be an Australian resident or hold an eligible visa
- get an income by working in an affected Local Government Area or live in an affected Local Government Area
- lose income as a direct result of the Eastern Queensland Bushfires, November 2019
- show you will earn less than the relevant income threshold amount in the fortnight following the loss of income.
You must not get the following payments for the same period you’re claiming this payment:
- an income support payment or pension
- Parental Leave Pay
- Dad and Partner Pay
- ABSTUDY living allowance
- Farm Household Allowance
- a Service Pension from the Department of Veterans' Affairs.
If you’re a member of a couple, you can both receive this payment. You and your partner will need to complete separate claim forms.