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Maribyrnong school leavers urged to beat the rush

Federal Member for Maribyrnong, Bill Shorten, has urged school leavers in Melbourne’s West to claim Youth Allowance as soon as possible if they plan to study an approved course full-time, look for work or undertake a full-time Australian Apprenticeship in 2013.

Mr Shorten said claims should be lodged early so payments could begin from the earliest possible date.

“Students can claim Youth Allowance as soon as they finish Year 12 or turn 18. Recent changes to Family Tax Benefit mean students will generally remain on Family Tax Benefit until they turn 18 or finish school,” Mr Shorten said.

“Many students and their parents may not realise they don’t have to wait for university preferences to lodge a claim if they are planning to go on to tertiary studies.”

In 2012, the Department of Human Services received almost 340,000 new claims for Youth Allowance from students, apprentices, trainees and jobseekers.

“As thousands of young people in the Maribyrnong electorate prepare to take their next step in life, they should also be organising themselves from a financial point of view,” Mr Shorten said.

Mr Shorten reminded school leavers that once a payment had been granted, it was important they tell Centrelink when their circumstances changed. This includes changes to their study or work load, income, address and relationship status, so they receive an accurate payment rate.

“Students and job seekers can do this easily with the mobile apps, Express Plus Students and Express Plus Job Seekers, or by using Centrelink’s Online Services,” he said.

For more information go to humanservices.gov.au, “like” facebook.com/StudentUpdate or follow Twitter@StudentUpdateAU.

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Suburbs in the Maribyrnong electorate include: Aberfeldie, Airport West, Albion, Avondale Heights, Brooklyn (part), Essendon, Essendon North, Essendon West, Kealba, Keilor East, Keilor Park, Maribyrnong (part), Moonee Ponds, Niddrie, St Albans (part), Sunshine, Sunshine North and Tullamarine (part).

Media Contact:

Kieran Barns-Jenkins: 9326 1300 / 0421 838 878