Eligibility rules for Carer Payment

Both the carer and the person they are providing care for care need to be eligible.

Residence rules

On the day you claim, both the carer and the person getting care must be:

To keep getting Carer Payment

To keep getting Carer Payment you must both continue to be Australian residents.

How long you need to have been a resident

You must be an Australian resident and be in Australia for 104 weeks before you can get Carer Payment.

What may be different

You may be exempt from the 104 week waiting period If you:

If you don’t meet these rules but you’ve lived or worked in a country that has a social security agreement with Australia, the agreement may help you to claim.

Rules for carers

To be an eligible carer you must meet these rules.

Care needs

You must be providing constant care in the home of:

  • one person who:
    • has a severe disability or severe illness
    • is frail aged

Or

  • 2 to 4 children aged under 16 whose needs add up to the same as 1 child with severe needs
  • 1 or 2 children aged under 16 and 1 adult whose needs add up to same as 1 child with severe needs
  • 2 or more children aged under 16 in shared care

Income and assets

You must:

Rules for the person getting care aged 16 years or older

If you are providing care for a person aged 16 or older they must meet these rules.

Care needs

The person getting care must:

  • score high enough on the Adult Disability Assessment Determination 1999 (ADAT)
  • have an illness or disability likely to last at least 6 months or a terminal illness
  • need care in their home, in your home or in hospital

The ADAT test has:

  • questions the carer must answer
  • questions the health professional who treats the person getting care must answer

What may be different

You may get this payment if the person you provide care for:

  • meets a lower ADAT score and
  • has a dependent child under 6, or
  • has a dependent child 6-16 that they get Carer Allowance for

Income and assets

They must:

  • Be getting a payment or benefit from us or the Department of Veterans’ Affairs, or

Rules for the child getting care aged under 16

If you are providing care for a child aged under 16, the child must meet these rules.

Care needs

The child getting care must:

  • have a score high enough on the Disability Care Load Assessment (Child) Determination 2010 (DCLAD)
  • have an illness or disability likely to last at least 6 months or a terminal illness, and
  • need care in their home or in hospital

The DCLAD test has:

  • questions the carer must answer
  • questions the health professional who treats the child getting care must answer

What may be different

Even if the person getting care has lower care needs we may pay Carer Payment for:

  • 2 to 4 children aged under 16 whose needs add up to the same as 1 child with severe needs
  • 1 or 2 children aged under 16 and 1 adult whose needs add up to the same as 1 child with severe needs
  • 2 or more children aged under 16 in shared care

Children with short term or episodic conditions

We also pay Carer Payment for a child under 16 who needs:

  • a lot of care for a short time, or
  • care on an episodic basis for 3 to 6 months

A short term condition is likely to be a one off and last for at least 3 months.

An episodic condition is likely to happen from time to time.

Income and assets

We add up the income and assets of:

  • the child
  • their parents
  • their parents’ other dependent children

They must:

Page last updated: 8 March 2017

This information was printed Wednesday 28 June 2017 from humanservices.gov.au/customer/enablers/eligibility-carer-payment It may not include all of the relevant information on this topic. Please consider any relevant site notices at humanservices.gov.au/siteinformation when using this material.