What is an employment separation certificate?

Published by MAXSolutions on March 29, 2020
employment separation certificate

If you’ve been made redundant or stood down, you may hear the words “employment separation certificate” for the first time. 

So what is an employment separation certificate? Why do you need one? Is it the same as a Centrelink separation certificate? 

Let’s break it down.


Why do I need an employment separation certificate?

In Australia, the Australian Government provides income support payments for eligible people who have lost their job.

This income support is delivered through Centrelink. When you apply for this payment, Centrelink may request to see your employment separation certificate.


What is an employment separation certificate?

An employment separation certificate is a form filled out by your former employer.

As the forms are required by Centrelink, they’re sometimes referred to as a “Centrelink separation certificate.” However, the form itself is an employment separation certificate.  

Centrelink uses the information provided in these forms to confirm that you are genuinely unemployed, the date your employment ended, your previous weekly pay along with any leave, redundancy or compensation payments you received at the end of your employment.

They compile this alongside other information you provide to assess your application for income support and ensure that you receive the correct payment amount.


How do I get an employment separation certificate?

If you were not provided an employment separation certificate at the time of your departure, you may need to return to your employer – this may be in person or over the phone or email – and request they complete one.

Centrelink requires employers to complete and return the form to you, or to them within 14 days of receiving it. 

This is to ensure that your application for income support is not delayed.

Employers are able to submit the form online. Employers can find out more about submitting an employment separation certificate online


What happens if I didn’t leave my employer on good terms?

There are some situations in which you are not required to provide Centrelink with a separation certificate.

These include: 

  • if you suffered sexual harassment or violence at the workplace, or
  • if your previous employer has ceased business. 

In these situations, Centrelink will seek to verify your previous employment details in other ways. 


Where to next?

Finding work after being made redundant or let go can be challenging.

Find out if you’re eligible for income support from the government in his period. 

Find out more about our range of available services and training courses visit Our Services

Check out our range of help and advice articles to help you get started.


Take care of your mental health

If you’ve been made redundant or stood down, it’s an emotional time. It’s normal to feel sadness leaving people and workplaces that are a big part of your life*.

You can talk about how you are feeling with your family or friends, make a plan and set some small goals for the next few months.

If the feelings of sadness don’t stop, please speak to your GP who can refer you to the appropriate mental health services in your area.

For immediate support call Lifeline on 13 11 14.

2.2.7 Jobseeker payment & youth allowance verification | Social Security Guide (dss.gov.au)

Employment Separation Certificate form (SU001) - Services Australia 

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Our blogs are about helping people seek the information that they need for their steps in the workforce.