Carer Payment

An income support payment if you give constant care to someone who has a severe disability, illness, or an adult who is frail and old.

Eligibility basics

  • you’re caring for 1 or more people with care needs which score high enough on the ADAT or DCLAD
  • they will have these needs for at least 6 months or the rest of their life
  • under the pension income and assets test limits
  • you and your care receiver must both be residing in Australia
We want your feedback on the new Carer Payment and Carer Allowance claim process.

Eligibility & payment rates

Eligibility rules

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

Read more about eligibility for Carer Payment

Exchanged care

We consider care to be exchanged care in certain circumstances.

Read more about exchanged care

Medical reports

We use medical reports to check if we can pay you Carer Payment. Health professionals who treat the person you are providing care for must complete these reports.

Read more about medical reports

Payment rates

There are different rates of Carer Payment for single people and couples.

Read more about how much you can get

Transitional rate of pension

The transitional rate started in 2009 for pensioners who would get a lower rate if we used the new income test.

Read more about the transitional rate of pension

Income and assets test

How much Carer Payment you get depends on what you and the person you provide care for earn and own.

Read more about income and assets


Check if you are eligible before you start your claim.


  • find out what you need to start claiming
  • start your claim
  • submit your claim with supporting documents
  • we will assess your claim and let you know the outcome



Change of circumstances

We need to know about changes that could reduce or stop your Carer Payment.

Read more about change of circumstances

Breaks from caring

You can still get Carer Payment if someone else provides care while you have a break, or the person you provide care for goes into hospital.

Read more about breaks from caring

Transfer to Carer Payment adult

When the person you provide care for is almost 16 you can request to transfer to Carer Payment and Carer Allowance for an adult.

Read more about when the person you provide care for is going to turn 16

Advance payment

You may get part of your income support early. This is an advance. You pay it back out of your normal payments from us.

Read more about advance payment

Weekly payment option

Some people can get income support payments each week instead of each fortnight.

Read more about weekly payments

If you travel outside Australia

We may pay Carer Payment if you leave Australia for a short time. You must keep meeting Carer Payment rules at all times.

Read more about Carer Payment if you travel outside Australia

Try self service

Do your Centrelink, Medicare and Child Support business using self service options, including our Express Plus mobile apps, online accounts and phone self service.

Read more about using self service.

Someone to deal with us on your behalf

If you want someone else to deal with us, you can authorise them to enquire, act or get payments for you.

Read more about someone to deal with us on your behalf

Income reporting

How much you or your partner earn affects your payment. We need to know what you and your partner earn so we pay you the right amount.

Read more about income reporting for your main income support payment

My bank account is overdrawn

You can get help to manage your money if your bank account is overdrawn.

Read more about what to do if your account is overdrawn


Services and programs

The following websites contain useful information for carers.

  • National Disability Insurance Scheme has information for families and carers of people with disability - you can get links to community groups that can support them too
  • myagedcare has support you can get if you care for someone who’s frail aged
  • Commonwealth Respite and Carelink Centres has information on respite care and other support services – call them on Freecall 1800 052 222 or 1800 059 059
  • Special Disability Trusts has help for the immediate family of people with severe disability – you can get information on setting up a Special Disability Trust to plan for the future care and housing of the disabled person too
  • Carers Australia has information about this national carers group and support services – call them on Freecall 1800 242 636
  • Carer Gateway has information about services and support for carers

Payment and Service Finder

Find, estimate and compare payments and services you may be eligible for. You can also work out what a change in circumstance might mean for the payments and services you currently receive from us.

Start using Payment and Service Finder

Manage your money


We’ve got advice and tools to help you with budgeting, borrowing and credit, and managing debt.

Read about how to manage your money

Regular deductions using Centrepay

You can use our free and voluntary service to pay bills as regular deductions from your Centrelink payments.

Read more about how Centrepay works

Page last updated: 11 December 2017