FSP Extenuating and Unforeseen Circumstances Guide

This is a FAQ BLOG and you can refer to our 19AA blog here.

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Date Updated: 2024-01-30

What are extenuating and unforeseen circumstances?

Simply put, these are uncontrollable circumstances that stop you from submitting or completing the necessary requirements and participating in the program.

Some examples would be life-threatening illness, serious accident, family circumstances, and loss of employment which are out of your control.


Please note the the following have specifically been identified as not considerations:

  • Medical
    • self-certified illness or medical circumstances
    • the evidence of a medical condition either doesn’t relate to the time when the illness or condition occurred, or was documented more than six months before the application was submitted
    • a long-term health condition with no evidence of a sudden worsening
    • a minor illness that would not normally cause a reasonable and responsible employed person to take sick leave
    • an uncomplicated pregnancy or childbirth before the start date of your program
  • Acute adverse life circumstances
    • bereavement
    • getting married or attending a wedding, festival or other personal event
    • divorce or relationship breakdown
    • financial hardship
    • stress or emotional isolation not associated with a diagnosed mental health condition. If you experience stress while on your training program, we recommend reducing your working hours (but maintain the 14.5-hour minimum) so that you have time for other responsibilities and self-care.
    • geographic isolation in an MMM 2–7 location
    • because of your age, religion, ethnicity or language skills you prefer to be placed in a metropolitan area
    •  you wish to access specific services (eg child care, education for children) in a metropolitan area
    •   circumstances for which appropriate adjustments have already been made by the RACGP
    • circumstances that a reasonable person would view as foreseeable or preventable
  • Employment
    • dispute with your employer about your working conditions
    • unable to complete your program requirements because you work more than 38 hours per week

How do I apply?

Send your application for extenuating and unforeseen circumstances by emailing it to ApprovedPlacement@racgp.org.au 

Note that the subject line must be ‘Extenuating and unforeseen circumstances (FSP) – Dr [LAST NAME] – [RACGP ID number]’

Evidence of the circumstances should also be less than 6 months before the application and these would be reviewed on a case-by-case basis.

What evidence should I provide?

Here are the list of evidences you should submit as stated by RACGP:

Medical circumstances

  • Details of diagnosis
    • Where possible (If it relates to mental health, the diagnosis should reference a tool, such as the DSM-5)
    • Date of first diagnosis
  • Impact of condition on you
    • Length of time providing treatment
    • Frequency of treatment
    • Reasons why the medical condition or required treatment prevents you from meeting the minimum requirements
    • Expected duration of illness/condition
    • How long you expect to be unable to meet the minimum part-time program requirements.
  • If you’re providing care to a significant family relation
    • Evidence of the level of care provided (e.g. number of visits to medical services, number of hours spent providing care, forms of care and assistance provided, care arrangements while you are working).
  • If the required medical services are situated in another location
    • A letter of support (or similar) from a GP or other relevant specialist noting that the treatment is:
      • either not available or not suitable in your current location
      • required more than once every two months
      • generally recognised as appropriate for the medical condition.
    • *If treatment is less frequent than once every two months, this will not be considered sufficiently impactful without the presence of other mitigating factors.

Please note that medical evidence must be provided by a health professional that is an AHPRA-registered GP and not related to you. Also, the treatment will not be considered if it is less than once every two months, unless there are other factors. 

Acute adverse life circumstances

  • Statutory declaration detailing the circumstances and their impact on you.
  • Court summons/subpoena for evidence
  • Court mandated custody arrangements

Employment circumstances

  • Evidence of mandatory employment relocation (eg for ADF mandatory postings)
  • Statutory declaration detailing the circumstances and their impact on you.
  • Letter from your employer indicating circumstances.
  • Evidence from the Australian Department of Home Affairs or international equivalent detailing the change in circumstances.
  • *Applications will not be considered if there are incomplete details

What do I do after I receive an outcome?

If your application is approved

You will be given a duration for the extenuating and unforeseen circumstances. Your application will also be valid for 12 months, unless stated otherwise.

If your application is denied

Alternative options may be given, such as a reduction in working hours.

We Can Help You

Here at People Medical Consulting, we have a passion for guiding medical practitioners through their career pathways to Australia. We have extensive experience in assisting medical facilities in recruiting doctors from local and overseas who will best suit their requirements.

We provide Document Assistance for those requiring support for their PESCI with IME, ACRRM or RACGP, registration and all other mandatory AHPRA requirements, fellowship program related forms and letters, application for Medicare provider and prescriber numbers, application for 19AB or 19AA exemptions and preparation of employment documents.

If you’re looking for assistance, contact us at help@peoplemedical.com.au and we would be glad to help you.

Information from this blog has been taken directly from:

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