Cashless Debit Card

This page provides an overview of the Cashless Debit Card program. If you are on the Cashless Debit Card and need help with your card or account please visit the Indue website, or call the Cashless Debit Card hotline on 1800 252 604 or email cashlessdebitcard@dss.gov.au.

For Local Partner Shopfront open hours please visit the Indue website

What is the Cashless Debit Card?

The Australian Government is considering the best possible ways to support people, families and communities in places where high levels of welfare dependence co-exist with high levels of social harm.

The Cashless Debit Card is testing whether reducing the amount of cash available in a community will reduce the overall harm caused by welfare fuelled alcohol, gambling and drug misuse.

While it is not a panacea, it is a useful tool operating alongside other reforms to address the devastating impacts of drug and alcohol misuse and problem gambling.

The Cashless Debit Card looks and operates like a regular bank card, except it cannot be used to buy alcohol or gambling products, some gift cards or to withdraw cash.

What’s new?

On Tuesday 21 September 2018, the Social Services Legislation Amendment (Cashless Debit Card Trial Expansion) Act 2018 was enacted. The rollout of the Cashless Debit Card in the Bundaberg and Hervey Bay region, Queensland will commence from early 2019.

The Bundaberg and Hervey Bay region, Queensland was selected as the fourth location based on support from local community and high levels of welfare dependency co-existing with high levels of social harm.

Visit the link below for more information about the Cashless Debit Card in the Bundaberg and Hervey Bay region:

Where is the Cashless Debit Card program currently operating?

The program is currently operating in the Goldfields region, Western Australia, the East Kimberley, Western Australia and Ceduna, South Australia.

Visit the link below for more information about the Cashless Debit Card in each of these areas:

Who does the Cashless Debit Card program apply to?

In the Ceduna, East Kimberley and Goldfields regions the program applies to all people who receive a working age welfare payment, with the exception of Age Pension and Veterans’ Pension recipients. However, people receiving these two payments may volunteer to participate. People who earn money from other sources, such as paid work, are also able to volunteer.

In the Bundaberg and Hervey Bay region, the program will apply to people aged 35 and under who receive Newstart, Youth Allowance (Job seeker), Parenting Payment (Partnered) and Parenting Payment (Single). People in the Bundaberg and Hervey Bay region are not able to volunteer to participate in the program.

How does the Cashless Debit Card work?

The Cashless Debit Card does not change the amount of money people receive from Centrelink, it only changes the way in which people receive and spend their fortnightly payments.

Those on the Cashless Debit Card receive:

  • 20 per cent of their welfare payment in their usual bank account.
  • 80 per cent of their welfare payment onto the Cashless Debit Card.

100 per cent lump sum payments from Centrelink are also placed onto the Cashless Debit Card.

To work out how much will be paid onto your Cashless Debit Card, enter your fortnightly payment amount into the following calculator.

What does the Cashless Debit Card look like?

Cashless Debit Card sample

Where can the Cashless Debit Card be used?

The Cashless Debit Card looks and operates like any other bank card, and can be used in stores that have an EFTPOS machine. The card cannot be used to buy alcohol, gambling products, some gift cards or to withdraw cash.

How the Cashless Debit Card works, more information can be found below.

It can be used:

  • in any store that accepts EFTPOS for products and services other than cash, alcohol or gambling
  • to shop at approved online stores
  • to pay bills and make recurring payments (such as mortgages)
  • for online banking – with an app for both Android and Apple devices.

It cannot be used to:

  • buy alcohol
  • gamble
  • withdraw cash.

More information on how the Cashless Debit Card works can be found on the Indue website.

You can also call the Cashless Debit Card hotline on 1800 252 604, or email cashlessdebitcard@dss.gov.au

How will the Cashless Debit Card affect businesses?

You will not need to opt-in to accept the Cashless Debit Card and most businesses will not need to change anything to accept the card. It will work at all businesses that have EFTPOS terminals nation-wide except for at businesses that primarily sell takeaway alcohol or gambling products.

If your business is located within a Cashless Debit Card site and sells both restricted and non-restricted goods you may be contacted by the Department of Social Services to discuss options for accepting the Cashless Debit Card, including entering into a Merchant Agreement.

Further information for businesses can be found on the Indue website.

More information on the Cashless Debit Card

For more information, call the Cashless Debit Card hotline on 1800 252 604 (free) or email cashlessdebitcard@dss.gov.au

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