Improved recognition and support for carers
Type 1 diabetes is now a recognised disability for children aged 10–16 years.
From 1 July 2012 some Carer Allowance customers will have increased eligibility for Bereavement Payment.
- care for a dependent child under 16 with a disability or medical condition who lives with you, or
- care for someone over 16 who has a disability, medical condition or is frail aged
Eligibility & payment rates
Eligibility for Carer Allowance
You may receive Carer Allowance if you are looking after a person who has a disability or medical condition or is frail aged.
Payment rates for Carer Allowance
Find out more about Carer Allowance payment rates effective from 1 January 2012.
Residency requirements for Carer Allowance
To lodge a claim and qualify for Carer Allowance, you and the person you are caring for must be Australian residents and in Australia on the day you lodge your claim.
To qualify, you must be living in Australia permanently as:
- an Australian citizen or
- the holder of a permanent resident visa or
- the holder of a protected special category visa.
Other benefits while receiving Carer Allowance
If you qualify for Carer Allowance, you may be entitled to other payments and benefits, such as:
Once you have read about eligibility the next steps are:
- register an intent to claim
- read the conditions for claiming
- complete the claim form
- provide supporting documentation
- submit your claim
- we will assess your claim and let you know the outcome
Managing your payment
Change of circumstances while receiving Carer Allowance
You need to tell us if your circumstances change when you are receiving Carer Allowance. For example, you need to tell us if:
- the person or child you care for goes into respite care or hospital or
- the person or child you care for needs less care or
- the child you care for stops being your dependant or
- you move house or
- you stop caring for the person or child or
- you or the person you care for goes on a holiday outside Australia or leaves Australia permanently.
You need to let us know about any changes within 14 days in case this affects your Carer Allowance. If you don't tell us about changes, you may be overpaid, and you will probably have to pay the money back.
If you deliberately don’t tell us about changes, you could be charged with fraud.
Payments paid while outside Australia
There are rules about getting your payment when you leave Australia.
Someone to deal with us on your behalf
You can authorise another person or organisation to deal with us on your behalf and receive your Centrelink payments under a correspondence or nominee arrangement.