Carer Payment

Eligibility

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

Residence rules

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

Newly arrived residents generally have to wait 104 weeks before getting this payment, with some exemptions. 

You must continue to meet the residence rules for as long as you get this payment.

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
  • earn less than the limit in the income test
  • own less than the limit in the assets test.

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: 30 October 2018