Support for non parent carers
Payments & services
We provide payments and services to grandparents, legal guardians and other family members who provide full time care for a child.
Payments and services to help non parent carers
There are several payments listed below that are available if you're not the parent of the child you care for:
- Child Care Benefit helps with the cost of approved or registered child care, such as long day care, family day care, occasional day care, outside school hour care, vacation care, preschool and kindergarten child care, and informal child care provided by grandparents, relatives, friends, neighbours or nannies
- Child Care Rebate covers 50% of out of pocket expenses in addition to Child Care Benefit for approved child care, up to an annual limit
- Jobs, Education and Training Child Care Fee Assistance can further help you meet the cost of approved child care not covered by Child Care Benefit. This assistance is for the hours of care you need for approved activities such as job search, work, study or training to help you enter or re-enter the workforce
- Grandparent Child Care Benefit covers the full cost of approved child care for up to 50 hours for each child per week if you or your partner are a grandparent with primary care of your grandchild and you receive an eligible income support payment
- Family Tax Benefit helps with the costs of raising or caring for children, you may be eligible if you’re the carer of your birth child, grandchild, foster child or adopted child
- Double Orphan Pension helps with the costs of caring for children who are orphans or are unable to be cared for by their parents in certain circumstances
- Assistance for Isolated Children Scheme can help carers of school aged students if they live in an isolated area, or can’t go to an appropriate state school daily because they have disability or special health needs
We also have grandparent advisers to support grandparents who care full time for their grandchildren.
Our rate estimator helps you identify possible payment rates for your family. You can also see how much Family Tax Benefit, Child Care Benefit for approved care or Child Care Rebate you may be able to get.
Our online estimator helps you identify possible payment options for your family. You can also see how much Family Tax Benefit, Child Care Benefit or Child Care Rebate you may be able to get.
Payments when providing care for a child with disability or a medical condition
We have payments, listed below, to help non parent carers when providing care to a child with disability or a medical condition:
- Carer Payment provides income support if you’re unable to work in substantial paid employment because you’re providing full time care to someone with severe disability, a severe medical condition or who is frail aged
- Carer Allowance is an income supplement available if you’re providing additional daily care and attention to someone with disability or a severe medical condition, it is not taxable or income and assets tested and can be paid in addition to wages or another income support payment
- Carer Supplement is an annual payment to help you with the costs of caring for a person with disability or a medical condition
- Child Disability Assistance Payment is an annual payment that helps you with the costs of caring for a child with disability
- Carer Adjustment Payment is a one off payment to help families adjust following a catastrophic event where a child 7 years or younger is diagnosed with a severe illness, medical condition or severe disability
If you provide care for a child 16 years or younger and you receive Carer Payment, you will generally receive Carer Allowance automatically.
Having a Medicare Card may allow you to claim a benefit for services provided by your doctor and some health specialists, or to access free health services if your doctor bulk bills.
Other Medicare services include:
- Australian Childhood Immunisation Register - a national register that records vaccinations given to children under 7 years of age
- Child Dental Benefits Schedule - provides access to benefits for basic dental services for children aged 2-17 years of age
- Medicare Safety Net - helps with the costs of out of hospital medical services that attract a Medicare benefit
- Pharmaceutical Benefits Scheme Safety Net - reduces the cost of prescription medicines once the Pharmaceutical Benefits Scheme Safety Net threshold has been reached
Child support for non parent carers
If you care for a child and you’re not the parent, you may be able to receive child support from one or both of the parents.
Read more about applying for child support as a non parent carer.
If you pay or receive child support, you should make sure we know about your change of situation. Changes to your circumstances may affect the amount of child support you pay or receive. You can update your child support arrangement by using your Child Support online account through myGov or calling our Child Support line on 131 272.
Read more about changes that affect your child support.
If your situation changes
You need tell us if your situation changes. This includes, for example, if the child you care for goes into respite care or hospital or needs less care. You can report changes to your income:You may also experience a change in income as a result of your circumstances. The easiest way to report changes to your income is online by using your Centrelink online account through myGov or the Centrelink Express Plus mobile app.
Read more about change of circumstances.
Other government and community support services
There are a range of other organisations that provide support services and useful information you may find helpful.
The MoneySmart website has information to help you make the most of your money. Visit the Budget planner section on the MoneySmart website.