Eligibility for Carer Allowance
Carer Allowance (caring for a person 16 years or over)
You may receive Carer Allowance (caring for a person 16 years or over) if you:
- are looking after a person aged 16 or more who has a disability or medical condition or is frail aged and needs additional care and attention on a daily basis and
- provide the care for that person in either your home or that person’s home.
You may receive Carer Allowance for up to two adults in your care.
If the person you care for goes into respite care or hospital
You can still receive Carer Allowance for up to 63 days in a calendar year when the person you care for:
- is temporarily out of your care or
- is in hospital.
The person you care for will generally be reviewed every two years to check whether there are any changes to his or her medical condition.
If the person you care for has a disability or medical condition and requires high care, he or she is unlikely to have many medical reviews.
Carer Allowance (caring for a child under 16 years)
You may receive Carer Allowance (caring for a child under 16 years) if:
- you look after a child with a disability or medical condition who needs additional care and attention on a daily basis or
- care for two children with disabilities and the children do not individually qualify you for Carer Allowance (child) but together create a substantial caring responsibility and
- you live with the child (or children) you are caring for.
Note: If you qualify for Carer Payment (caring for a child under 16 years), you will generally receive Carer Allowance automatically.
Taking a break from caring
You can take a number of breaks from caring, up to 63 days per calendar year (1 January to 31 December) for respite, and still be eligible for Carer Allowance.
If the child goes into hospital
You can continue to receive Carer Allowance if the child you are caring for goes into hospital, as long as you continue to provide care for the child while he or she is in hospital and you intend to resume caring for the child when he or she returns home.
It is important that you tell us if this occurs. We will contact you after your child has been in hospital for a continuous period of 12 weeks.
To check your eligibility for Carer Allowance, the child you care for may be required to have a medical review on reaching these developmental milestones:
- four years and eight months
- 10 years
- 13 years.
If the child’s disability or medical condition is on the list of recognised disabilities, he or she will not have milestone reviews. For a list of recognised disabilities visit the guide to the revised lists of recognised disabilities on the Department of Families, Housing, Community Services and Indigenous Affairs website.