Morrison Frydenberg announcing COVID disaster payment

After the lockdown in Victoria was extended for another week, the pressure on the federal government it seems became too much to bear. And as metro Melbourne enters the second week of lockdown, the Federal Government has announced a new financial support package – Temporary COVIDF Disaster payment – to help people living in states and suburbs which have been forced into snap COVID-19 lockdowns.

The package will address those (able to qualify under its strict criteria) in metro Melbourne, facing the second week in lockdown with no job or income to hang on to.

Known as the Temporary COVID Disaster Payment the measure was announced by Prime Minister Scott Morrison yesterday.

Payments of $500 will be made available to employees who work more than 20 hours in a week. For those working less than 20 hours in a week, the amount available will be $325.

But they will have to meet the following qualifying criteria:


You must reside or work in an area defined as a Commonwealth-determined hotspot.

Immediately prior to the lockdown, you must be engaged in paid employment and unable to attend work and therefore unable to earn an income as a result of state health restrictions.

Age limit:

Yes, you must be aged 17 and over.

Savings threshold:

You must not have more than $10,000 liquid assets and must self-declare that to be the case.

Other benefits:

You must not be receiving an income support payment or pandemic payment.

Leave entitlement in reserve:

To qualify, you are not required to use up your annual leave, but if you are entitled to some other leave – such as special pandemic sick leave, you must exhaust those entitlements first.

Minimum lockdown length

The payment is available only if you have been subjected to lockdown of greater than seven days. The lockdown does not have to be state or city wide, it can be specific to your postcode and you can still qualify for the payment. The area must fall under the definition of a Commonwealth hotspot.

Making the application:

You can apply online through Services Australia website. There will also be a dedicated 1-800 number to apply by phone.

If a person is eligible for this Temporary COVID Disaster payment, they will be paid in the same week.

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