On 26 February 2014, the Australian Government announced a package to support farm families in financial hardship.
Description of the measure
This measure includes two parts:
- Part A which introduced the Interim Farm Household Allowance from 1 March 2014. The Interim Farm Household Allowance replaced the Transitional Farm Family Payment.
- Part B which introduces the Farm Household Allowance from 1 July 2014. The Farm Household Allowance will replace the Interim Farm Household Allowance.
The policy settings for the Interim Farm Household Allowance and the Farm Household Allowance are broadly aligned and include the following:
- an assets threshold of $2.55 million (excluding the family home)
- payment rates aligned to Newstart Allowance, or Youth Allowance for those under 22 years of age, and
- access to a Health Care Card.
Farm Household Allowance also includes the following:
- payable for a maximum of three cumulative years, and
- reciprocal obligations to work with a Farm Household Case Officer to develop a financial improvement plan with approved activities they are required to undertake.
Questions and answers
Who will be affected by this measure?
Farming families in financial hardship will be affected by this measure.
Am I eligible for this measure?
To be eligible for the Interim Farm Household Allowance (until 30 June 2014) or the Farm Household Allowance (from 1 July 2014) you must meet the following criteria:
- be assessed as a qualifying farmer
- be an Australian resident
- be currently in Australia
- be 16 years of age or over
- contribute a significant part of your capital and labour to the farm enterprise
- the farm enterprise must be of a significant commercial purpose or character.
When will this measure start and finish?
Interim Farm Household Allowance started on 1 March 2014 and will end on 30 June 2014. Interim Farm Household Allowance can still be paid until 30 September 2014 if a farmer indicates they wish to claim Farm Household Allowance from 1 July 2014 and their claim is being assessed.
Farm Household Allowance will commence on 1 July 2014 and is ongoing.