- aged 25 years or more, and
- studying full-time in an approved course at an approved educational institution, or
- undertaking a full-time Australian Apprenticeship or traineeship
VET FEE-HELP reforms
There are reforms to the VET FEE HELP scheme.
Eligibility & payment rates
Eligibility for Austudy
You may be eligible for Austudy if you are:
- aged 25 years or more
- studying full-time in an approved course at an approved educational institution, or undertaking a full-time Australian Apprenticeship
- meet a personal income and assets test, and
- meet residence requirements
Payment rates for Austudy
|If you are||Maximum payment per fortnight|
|single, with children||$559.20|
|couple, no children||$426.80|
|couple, with children||$468.70|
These special rates may apply if you:
- are long-term unemployed
- do not have a dependent child and have received an income support payment, other than a student payment, and
- were unemployed for at least 26 out of the last 39 weeks and starting full-time study in a course of 12 months’ duration or more
|If you are long-term unemployed and||Maximum payment per fortnight|
|couple, no children||$468.70|
Personal income test for ABSTUDY, Austudy and Youth Allowance
Your income and assets affect the amount of Austudy you receive. An income and assets test works out what you will be paid.
Assets test for Austudy
As an applicant for Austudy you will need to meet an assets test.
Your payment will be affected if your liquid assets equal or exceed $5,500 for a single or $11,000 for a couple or single with dependants.
If your liquid assets are above this amount, there will be a liquid assets waiting period. This means that you may not receive a payment immediately. We will let you know how long you have to wait before you can be paid, which can be up to 13 weeks depending on:
- the amount of your liquid assets, and
- whether you are a member of a couple
- whether you have dependent children
Residence requirements for Austudy
To be eligible for Austudy you must satisfy residence requirements. You must:
- be an Australian resident, and
- be physically present in Australia on the day you lodge your claim, and
- continue to meet the residence requirements for as long as you get this payment
Newly arrived residents generally have a 104 week waiting period, with some exemptions.
Approved courses of study and institutions for Austudy, Youth Allowance and Pensioner Education Supplement
You need to be studying an approved course at an approved institution to receive Austudy, Youth Allowance as a student and Pensioner Education Supplement.
Earning extra money if you get Austudy
As an Austudy customer, you can earn up to $427 per fortnight before tax, before your payment is affected.
Income between $428 and $512 reduces your fortnightly payment by 50 cents in the dollar.
Income above $512 reduces your payment by 60 cents in the dollar.
Please see Income Bank for more information.
Study loads for Austudy and Youth Allowance
You need to maintain study load requirements to receive Austudy or Youth Allowance.
Allowable time while receiving Austudy
Allowable time is the amount of time you can receive a payment while studying.
Low Income Health Care Card while receiving Austudy
Distance and online education for tertiary and secondary students
If you are a distance education student you need to be studying an approved course at an approved institution.
Managing your payment
Change of circumstances while receiving Austudy
You need to tell us if your circumstances change when you are receiving Austudy. For example, you need to tell us if:
- you reduce your study or training workload or
- you stop studying
- you change your address, or
- your income changes
You need to let us know within 14 days in case this affects your Austudy payment, because:
- if you don't tell us about the changes you may find yourself in debt
- if you are overpaid benefits, you will probably have to pay the money back
If you deliberately do not tell us about changes, you could be charged with fraud, and a recovery fee may be imposed if you give us incorrect information about your employment income.
Advance payment options
You may be eligible to receive part of your Centrelink payment in advance. Accessing an advance payment depends on the type of payment you receive, how long you have been receiving it and the amount that you receive.
Austudy while travelling outside Australia
To get your payment while outside Australia you must continue to meet the qualification rules for Austudy.
Someone to deal with us on your behalf
If you want someone else to handle your Centrelink, Child Support or Medicare business you can authorise them to deal with us on your behalf.
Weekly payment option
You can receive your income support payment weekly, instead of fortnightly, in certain circumstances.
How much you earn affects your payment. We need to know what you have earned each fortnight so you are paid the right amount.
Transfer to Age Pension
If you are age pension age and receiving an eligible Centrelink income support payment, you can apply to transfer to Age Pension.
What to do if your account is overdrawn
There is support available to help you manage your money if you have overdrawn your bank, building society or credit union account.
Do your Centrelink, Medicare and Child Support business using self service options, including our Express Plus mobile apps, online accounts and phone self service.
Information you need to know about your claim for Youth Allowance/Austudy form (CI004)
This booklet contains information you may need to know about your claim for Austudy and Youth Allowance.
Stay up to date
Express Plus Students mobile app
Express Plus Students offers students and Australian Apprentices a simple way to do their Centrelink business on the go using their mobile device.
Select the options that describe your circumstances then explore a suggested list of possible Centrelink and Medicare payments and services online.
Select your state and topics of interest to find links to government and community organisation support.
- Managing your money helps you control your money to help you achieve your goals, manage on a low income and know where to go for urgent money help
- Borrowing & credit provides information on loans, credit cards, other types of credit such as interest free deals and rent to buy, information about credit reports and credit repair and what to do if you are having trouble with debt
- Superannuation & retirement helps you get the most out of your super
- Investing guides you through the basic principles of investing and how to find a good financial adviser
- Scams explains how scams work, how to identify different scams and what to do if you have been scammed
- Life events & you provides information tailored to your situation including under 25s, families and over 55s
- Tools & resources provides handy tools, calculators, publications, audio files and quizzes including a budget planner, retirement planner and mobile apps