Partner Allowance

An old payment for non-working partners of people on income support that is closed to new claims.

New grants of Partner Allowance stopped on 20 September 2003. If you got Partner Allowance before that date, you must still meet the income and assets test.

Eligibility & payment rates

Income test

Your income can reduce how much we pay you.

Read more about the income test


Property or items that you or your partner own in full or part, or have an interest in, can affect your payment.

Read more about assets

Who can get payments and what affects them

The amount you get depends on:

  • your personal circumstances
  • your income and assets
  • information you give us, such as:
  • if you're part of a couple
  • your living arrangements
  • where you live
  • your residency status - if you're new to Australia, check if waiting times apply
  • if you're paid under an International Social Security Agreement
  • other payments you or your partner get
  • tax exemptions
  • whether you need to pay tax on your Centrelink payment
  • holidays
  • moving permanently outside Australia
  • going to jail
  • how many dependent children you have

Dependent children under 6

If you care for dependent children under 6, you may get Parenting Payment.

If you’re eligible, you must transfer from Partner Allowance to Parenting Payment.

Payment rates

From 20 September 2017, the highest rate of Partner Allowance is $486.50 a fortnight. The amount you get depends on your income and assets.

We adjust Partner Allowance in line with the Consumer Price Index each year on:

  • 20 March, and
  • 20 September

We review your Partner Allowance every 6 months.

If your income varies, you need to report to us every fortnight.

If you disagree with a decision we make, you can appeal.

Managing your payment

Change of circumstances

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

If you don’t tell us, you may be doing the wrong thing.

You need to tell us if:

  • children under 6 come into your care, or
  • your income changes

How and when to tell us

The easiest way to tell us about changes is through our self service options.

You need to:

  • tell us within 14 days of the change
  • make sure your details are up to date in myGov

It’s never too late to report a change.

If you don’t tell us

If you don’t tell us about changes in your life, we may pay you too much. If this happens, you’ll have to pay the money back and there may be a recovery fee.

If you don’t tell us about changes on purpose, it could be fraud.

Read about how to avoid committing fraud.

While travelling outside Australia

To get your payment while outside Australia you must continue to meet the qualification rules for Partner Allowance.

Read more about Partner Allowance while travelling outside Australia

Weekly payment option

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

Read more about weekly payments

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

When you reach age pension age

If you’re getting Partner Allowance and reach age pension age, you can transfer to Age Pension.

Read more about Partner Allowance when you reach age pension age

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


Improve your skills for education and employment

The Skills for Education and Employment program may help you improve your speaking, reading, writing or maths.

Read about Skills for Education and Employment.

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 regular deductions using Centrepay

Page last updated: 20 September 2017