Information for job seekers about Relocation Assistance

If you are having difficulty finding a job in your local area or you have found a suitable job outside your local area, but are concerned about the cost of relocating, the Relocation Assistance to Take Up a Job programme may be able to assist you.

The Relocation Assistance to Take Up a Job programme is an Australian Government programme which helps job seekers to relocate for work.

If you move away from home to take up an ongoing job and are an eligible job seeker, you may be able to get practical and financial relocation assistance under the programme.

Am I eligible for relocation assistance? 

You are eligible for relocation assistance if you apply to receive assistance before you move and start work, and you:

  • are registered as a fully eligible job seeker with a jobactive provider or are participating in Disability Employment Services
  • have been receiving an eligible income support payment (Newstart Allowance, Youth Allowance (other) or Parenting Payment) for the last 12 months
  • have mutual obligation requirements.

Where can I move to?

Your new location must be:

  • within Australia
  • at least 90 minutes away from where you currently live, based on reasonable travel routes.

If your move is between capital cities, your new location must have a lower unemployment rate than where you currently live.

How much assistance can I receive?

You may be eligible to receive up to:

  • $3,000 if you relocate to a capital city
  • $6,000 if you relocate to a regional area
  • an extra $3,000 if you relocate with dependent children.

What can I use the assistance for?

Relocation assistance is flexible and can be used for:

  • up to two months’ rent
  • rental bond and connecting utilities
  • removalist and travel costs
  • some employment-related expenses.

Speak with your jobactive or Disability Employment Services provider about whether you can receive your assistance as a reimbursement, an upfront payment, or whether suppliers can be paid directly.

What jobs can I do?

You can get relocation assistance if you move to take up any suitable work or an apprenticeship, but your new job must be ongoing.

There are penalties which may include loss of income support payments for up to 12 weeks if:

  • you leave your job without a valid reason within the first six months
  • your employer ceases your employment due to your misconduct
  • you accept relocation assistance but do not commence employment or do not relocate.

Penalties will not apply if it is not your fault that you lose your job, such as through redundancy or business closure.

How do I apply?

To apply for the Relocation Assistance to Take Up a Job programme, talk to your local jobactive or Disability Employment Services provider.

Want more information?

  • Call the Employment Services Information Line on 13 62 68
  • If you are registered with a jobactive or Disability Employment Services provider, ask them about eligibility information and what assistance you can receive, or call the National Customer Service Line on 1800 805 260
  • For a version of this information to print, download the Help to relocate and take up a job—information for job seekers fact sheet

Note that call charges apply for calls to ‘13’ and ‘1800’ numbers from mobile phones.