How two best friends got MARRIED to exploit Centrelink loophole, become full-time climate activists

Author: Yuvi October 7, 2022


A young Aussie has revealed how they decided to marry their best friend so they could exploit a Centrelink loophole and become full-time climate activists.

In an anonymous piece penned for youth website Pedestrian on Thursday, the young author revealed the two friends – who are not in a relationship – have been living out of a car and struggling to get by without government support.

The author claimed they were unable to access Centrelink payments as independents because they are both under the age of 22, when people are automatically considered independent.

For that reason, the author said, they entered a marriage that was strictly business.

‘For us, getting married meant we could be full-time climate activists who can hopefully afford food and continue to live out of our car’ the anonymous Aussie wrote.

However, according to the Centrelink, youth under the age of 22 can prove their independence through working more than a set amount of hours each week.

The piece neglected to mention whether the wedded couple were working, or if they are even able to work full time jobs.

A young Australian has revealed how she and her best friend got married while in the boot of their car in order to access Centrelink payments (above, a stock)

The pair of youth activists eloped in the back of their car without any ceremony, their platonic marriage was strictly business, not even their parents know (above, a stock)

The pair of youth activists eloped in the back of their car without any ceremony, their platonic marriage was strictly business, not even their parents know (above, a stock)

The writer explained that the two friends filled out the marriage forms from their car boot, officially eloping by the light of their laptop.

The author revealed the pair will continue their marriage until they both turned 22-years-old and could apply for separate Centrelink payments.

‘I didn’t want to get married. Hannah didn’t either. But we knew we couldn’t make ends meet if we didn’t,’ the anonymous youth wrote.

Neither of the two best friends have told their parents about the situation.

The piece did not mention why the pair had not informed their families.

Nor did it detail why they could not be released as independents by their parents, which would make them eligible for payments under the age of 22.

The author didn't mention specifically why she needed to access the Centrelink (above) payments, or why her parents would not sign documents that allowed them to be independents in the eyes of Australian welfare

The author didn’t mention specifically why she needed to access the Centrelink (above) payments, or why her parents would not sign documents that allowed them to be independents in the eyes of Australian welfare

The author said the friends had discovered a ‘crack in the system’, allowing disadvantaged people to claim independence over their lives.

‘As it stands, young, vulnerable people are not able to receive payments they need. Queer people and those coming from domestically violent homes who can’t simply ask their parents to sign a form allowing them to be independents have it particularly bad,’ the author wrote.

‘I was luckier than most. Hannah and I were both in the same situation and of a similar age. We were also both not particularly interested in the idea of ​​marriage as a life goal, so we were happy to use up our proverbial marriage token for as long as needed.’

The piece received a mixed reaction on social media.

On Twitter, publisher Jim Malo wrote: ‘These two are full-time climate activists, and they married each other just so they can get Jobseeker. A huge decision no-one should have to make to access welfare.’

Supporters backed the couple, with one saying they didn’t exploit Centrelink.

‘They got married which is the main qualifying factor and they have to complete the job seeker tasks to keep their payments’, the Twitter user wrote.

One of the coolest pieces I’ve had the pleasure of publishing for a contributor — these two are full-time climate activists, and they married each other just so they can get Jobseeker. A huge decision no-one should have to make to access welfare. https://t.co/m5UdnwCXqf

— Jim Malo (@thejimmalo) October 5, 2022

Another user wrote: ‘My kid & his gf have considered this. Neither wants to get married, but may be the only option. It’s crazy that they’re not considered independent at 18 as FTB (family tax benefit) & child support for the parents stop at 18…’.

‘I don’t blame them (to be honest). I think we may see more folks marry platonically to be able to access things that wouldn’t be available to them otherwise. Very smart. Folks shouldn’t have to jump through hoops for stuff like this but you do what you must to survive,’ another posted.

However there were critics of the new couple, with one person responding: ‘The real loophole here is that they’re not jobseekers but dole bludgers. Why don’t you write a follow-up on the loophole they find to dodge (Work For the Dole)?’

‘How about getting jobs and being part-time activists?’ asked another user.

7 October, 2022, 8:13 am

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Friday, 7th October 2022

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