Transition to Work assistance is paid to help clients to:
Transition to Work assistance is available to clients seeking or taking up paid work. It consists of:
A Transition to Work Grant is available to help clients with the costs of seeking or taking up paid work. This assistance is available to people who meet the qualifying criteria and have an essential cost because of their job search, job interview or job offer.
Transition to Work Grants replaced Work Start Grants and Pathways Payments from April 2007.
A Transition to Work Grant may be available to:
To receive a Transition to Work Grant, a client is required to:
A person aged under 18 may be treated as being in exceptional circumstances if they:
Clients generally cannot receive a Transition to Work Grant if they are entering self-employment.
Income, asset and residency tests apply.
Income and asset limits for a Transition to Work Grant are shown in table TW.1.
table TW.1: Income and asset limits for Transition to Work Grants (applicable from 1 April 2012)
|Status of client||Income limit1||Asset limit|
|Single 16–17 years||$468.23||$1,025.11|
|Single 18 years or over||$538.15||$1,025.11|
|Married with or without children||$781.62||$1,708.10|
|Sole parent, one child||$653.01||$1,708.10|
|Sole parent, two or more children||$687.98||$1,708.10|
Parental cash assets and income are taken into account if the client is:
The costs that may be met by a Transition to Work Grant are:
A maximum of $1,500 in Transition to Work Grants is available in any 52-week period.
A Transition to Work Grant may be paid to a client seeking part-time work when it is reasonable and appropriate for the client to be seeking part-time work. This may apply when:
The part-time position must involve at least 15 hours of work a week.
In these circumstances, a Transition to Work Grant may be paid for:
In other circumstances, the position must involve at least 30 hours of work a week.
Transition to Work Grants replaced Work Start Grants from April 2007.
Before April 2007, a Work Start Grant was available to meet the essential costs of taking up paid employment or attending a job interview. After April 2007, Work Start Grants were incorporated into the assistance delivered as Transition to Work Grants.
A Work Start Grant was non-taxable, non-recoverable assistance available to a client aged 16 or over who, without help to meet the costs involved, would not be able to:
Job interviews and job offers needed to be for positions involving at least 15 hours of work a week.
In any 52-week period, a maximum of $300 worth of grants was available in most circumstances. Residency, income and cash asset tests applied.
A maximum of up to $550 worth of grants in any 52-week period was available when a client obtained a grant for:
To receive a Work Start Grant, a client was required to:
Residency, income and cash asset tests applied.
Transition to Work Grants replaced Pathways Payments from April 2007.
A Pathways Payment helped clients who entered paid employment with the living costs they encountered between the cancellation of their benefit and the receipt of:
To be eligible, clients had to:
The Pathways Payment was equal to two weeks’ payment (after tax) of the benefit cancelled to enter paid work. If a client with a debt to Work and Income received a Pathways Payment, their debt repayments were suspended for a period of three months.
A Pathways Payment was non-taxable, non-recoverable, and not subject to asset tests.
After April 2007, Pathways Payments were incorporated into Transition to Work Grants.
The New Employment Transition Grant provides a payment to clients with a dependent child or children during the first six months after their benefit is stopped due to employment.
A payment can be made when the client is unable to work because they, their partner (if any) or their dependent child becomes sick or because of a break down in childcare arrangements.
A New Employment Transition Grant is available to help replace income lost through:
New Employment Transition Grants are available:
The maximum daily rate of a New Employment Transition Grant is limited to the lesser of:
A total of no more than $675 (from 1 April 2012) in New Employment Transition Grants may be paid to a client within the six-month qualifying period.
Grants are non-taxable and non-recoverable.
A client must be unable to work because of:
To receive a New Employment Transition Grant because of illness, the client must have:
A client in self-employment must also declare that:
Residency and cash asset tests apply to all New Employment Transition Grants.
Seasonal Work Assistance is available to replace income lost when a client is unable to undertake seasonal horticultural work because of adverse weather conditions.
This assistance is non-taxable and non-recoverable.
Seasonal Work Assistance is available:
At the end of June 2012, this assistance was available to people working in the fruit, vegetable, wine, flower, hops, hemp, tobacco, olive and nursery plant industries.
Residency, income and cash asset tests apply.
The amount of Seasonal Work Assistance payable depends on:
The amount of assistance to be paid per week is the lesser of:
The maximum weekly payments available as at 1 April 2012 are shown in table TW.2.
table TW.2: Maximum rates of Seasonal Work Assistance payable (applicable from 1 April 2012)
|Hours of work lost |
(over one week)
|Maximum weekly payment|
|Single person||Sole parent||Married person, or person in civil union (each applicant)|
|Over 40 hours||$230.00||$415.00||$415.00|
A total of no more than $830 in Seasonal Work Assistance may be paid to a client within the six-month qualifying period.
Trends in the payments of Transition to Work assistance largely reflected trends in the number of clients entering paid work. This in turn reflected a combination of changes in economic conditions and the emphasis by Work and Income on helping clients to get and stay in paid work.
Some clients may have received more than one payment of Transition to Work assistance during the same financial year. The number of payments for a period will therefore be greater than the number of clients receiving assistance.
The number of payments decreased slightly between 2010/2011 and 2011/2012
This decrease (see table TW.3) followed increases between 2008/2009 and 2010/2011. This pattern largely reflected:
table TW.3: Types of expenditure met by Transition to Work Grants, Work Start Grants
and Pathways Payments provided
|Type of assistance||2007/2008||2008/2009||2009/2010||2010/2011||2011/2012|
|Work Start Grants1|
|Total Work Start Grants1||38||2||0||0||0|
|Transition to Work Grants2|
|Bridging finance – benefit recipient||6,516||6,432||8,409||8,094||8,527|
|Bridging finance – other||7,876||7,375||7,789||8,115||8,116|
|Job placement costs||52,202||49,866||64,334||65,489||64,243|
|Job search costs||13,952||17,062||26,320||29,145||28,213|
|Total Transition to Work Grants2||80,546||80,735||106,852||110,843||109,100|
|All payment types3|
|Total payments made (all types)||80,584||80,737||106,852||110,843||109,100|
The number of New Employment Transition Grants provided decreased between 2010/2011 and 2011/2012
This decrease (see table TW.4) followed an increase between 2009/2010 and 2010/2011. This pattern reflected at least in part changes in the number receiving main benefits and the impact of this on the number leaving benefits to enter paid work.
table TW.4: Numbers of New Employment Transition Grants provided
|New Employment Transition Grants provided1|
The number of Seasonal Work Assistance payments remained relatively flat between 2010/2011 and 2011/2012
This pattern (see table TW.5) followed increases between 2008/2009 and 2010/2011. This pattern reflected a combination of:
table TW.5: Numbers of Seasonal Work Assistance payments provided
|Seasonal Work Assistance payments provided1|