Family Tax Benefit when your child turns 16 years of age

When your child turns 16, you can either keep getting Family Tax Benefit, or your child may be eligible for another payment.

When your child turns 16 years of age

You can keep getting Family Tax Benefit (FTB) for your child if they're:

  • 16 to 19 and in full time secondary study, or they’re exempt
  • not getting a payment from the Department of Veterans’ Affairs, such as Veterans’ Children Education Scheme (VCES) or Military Rehabilitation and Compensation Act Education and Training Scheme payment, and
  • not getting Youth Allowance

Full time secondary study for FTB

Full time secondary study can include:

  • study leading towards a year 12 qualification
  • an accredited secondary course through a secondary school, TAFE, higher education institution, or special school
  • an Australian Qualification Framework Certificate II or higher qualification issued by a registered training organisation or higher education institution, or
  • Certificate II, III or IV of General Education, the International Baccalaureate or other higher education pre-entry course

Your child can’t gain a year 12 qualification through home schooling. You must tell us if your child is being home schooled.


You could be exempt if your child can’t study full time. The exemption can be permanent or temporary.

Temporary exemptions can be for up to 12 months. We review these before the exemption period ends.

To check if your child qualifies or if there’s a reason your child isn’t in full time secondary study, call us.

Other payments and services

When your child turns 16, sometimes they become eligible for other payments or services.

In most cases, FTB will still be your family’s payment. Children can claim a payment in their own right when they turn 18, complete full time secondary study, start living away from home or become independent.

If you care for a child with disability or a medical condition, read more about payments for carers and payments for people living with an illness, injury or disability.

You can also use our online estimator to compare rates and see which payment is better for your family.

Page last updated: 6 February 2018