Australian government departments or agencies occasionally provide limited one-off financial assistance to people who have suffered loss as a result of declared natural, environmental and other disasters. This factsheet provides links to relevant schemes managed by the Commonwealth and Victorian governments for people based in Victoria.
The Australian Government Disaster Recovery Payment is a Commonwealth Government–declared payment to assist people who have been adversely affected by natural disasters in various Local Government Areas.
More information about help in an emergency is available on the Commonwealth Department of Human Services website.
Other payments to help you in a crisis
You may be able to apply for an immediate income support payment, even if you are not already receiving a Centrelink benefit. The type of payment or assistance that you may be able to get will depend on your individual circumstances –examples include:
- Advance lump-sum payment
- Crisis payment, for people on benefits.
- Special benefit
- Carer adjustment payment
- Child disability assistance payment
- Special disability trust
- Pension loan schemes
- Early release of your superannuation.
For more information about financial assistance, call the Commonwealth Department of Human Services:
- Exceptional Circumstances Relief 132 850, Monday to Friday, 8:00am to 5:00pm.
- Farmer assistance 132 316, Monday to Friday, 8:00am to 8:00pm.
Victorian Government Department of Human Services
Financial crisis support options are outlined at the Victorian Government Department of Human Services (DHS) website.
It includes information on:
- DHS Personal Hardship Assistance Scheme
- managing insurance issues after an emergency (this link will take you to MoneySmart website)
- dealing with financial matters after an emergency
- the Personal Hardship Assistance Program Pre-paid card
If you need further information about your eligibility for emergency relief assistance, please contact the VicEmergency Hotline on 1300 226 226 or visit their website.
Note: The majority of one-off and special payments related to the 2009 Victorian Bushfires have now closed. More information regarding continuing schemes and cut-off dates is available at: http://www.dhs.vic.gov.au/bushfireappeal/Fund-Payments