Payments for Carers

///Payments for Carers

Payments for Carers

Carers’ Payments

Carers may be eligible for payments designed to help them meet the costs of caring. There are also programs that provide support for the person in their care. Payments come from the government sector, and others from the non-government sector. This section assists you find information on where to apply for financial support, and details on the process of applying for it.

Some payments are available to Carers in general. Other payments are specifically for Older Carers, Younger Carers, Carers of Aboriginal or Torres Strait Islander background, or for Carers Of A Person With a Disability.

Carers’ Payments Details

You may experience financial difficulties as you struggle to divide your time between work and caring for a family member or friend. It may be that you are unable to work if the person in your care requires a lot of assistance.

Depending on your personal circumstances, the Australian Government has several types of payment and financial support option available, that include special schemes if you are a Veteran or an Aboriginal or Torres Strait Islander.

If you are currently receiving a pension, you may also be eligible to receive a concession card that applies to a range of services.

Types of Payments

Carer Payment

Objective: To provide income support if you are unable to work due to the demands of your role as a Carer.

Criteria: You may qualify to receive this payment if you provide ongoing care in a private home for a person with a severe medical condition or disability, or who is frail and elderly, and you aren’t seperated from them for more than 25 hours a week to work.

Additional Information: Learn more about the Carer Payment on the Department of Human Services website.

Carer Allowance

Objective: To provide a fortnightly income supplement for parents or carers who are providing additional daily care and attention to an adult or dependent child or children.

Criteria: You may qualify to receive this payment if you care for a person with a medical condition or disability, or a frail older person, even if you involved in work or study.

Additional Information: Learn more about the Carer Allowance on the Department of Human Services website.

Carer Supplement

Objective: To provide an annual lump sum payment to assist with the cost of caring for a person.

Criteria: You may qualify to receive this payment if you already receive a Carer Allowance or Carer Payment.

Additional Information: Learn more about the Carer Supplement on the Department of Human Services website.

Carer Adjustment Payment

Objective: To provide a one-off payment of financial assistance to families who are not eligible for income support in circumstances where, following a catastrophic event involving a child aged under 7 years, the family is experiencing a period of significant adjustment as a result of the care needs of the child.

Criteria: You may qualify to receive this payment if you care for a child under 7 years who has been diagnosed with a severe medical condition or disability.

Additional Information: You must also meet the criteria of –

  • Be receiving Carer Allowance
  • Not be eligible for, or be in receipt of Carer Payment or any other income support payment
  • Have a strong need for financial support after the event
  • Claim within 2 years from diagnosis

Learn more about the Carer Adjustment Payment on the Department of Human Services website.

Young Carer Bursary Programme

Objective: To provide a bursary (financial assistance) to reduce your need to find part-time work if you are studying or training and also careing of someone.

Criteria: You may qualify to receive this bursary if you are aged 12 to 25 year, in secondary education or higher, and training or studying.

Additional Information: Learn more about the Young Carer Bursary Programme.

Child Disability Assistance Payment

Objective: To provide an annual lump sum payment to help with the cost of caring for a child with disability.

Criteria: You may qualify to receive this payment if you receive Carer Allowance for a child.

Additional Information: Learn more about the Child Disability Assistance Payment on the Department of Human Services website.

Payments To Carers With Dependent Children

If you have children, you may also be able to get other payments for families.

What To Do Next?

You might find it helpful to utilise the Department of Human Services’ online PaymentFinder tool to narrow down the possibilities.

Once you understand the types of Carer Payments available, it may be helpful to contact Carers Australia for more information. Call 1800 242 636.

You can contact Centrelink on 132 717. As you may have to wait a while, it is advisable to call from somewhere comfortable. The initial steps cannot be completed online.

If it’s your first contact with Centrelink, you will be required to respond to recorded questions and state out aloud that you do not have a Customer Access Number before being transferred to a Centrelink staff member.

If you are already registered with Centrelink, please have your Customer Access Number (also called a Customer Reference Number) and PIN on hand when you make the call. You will be prompted to key them in during the call.

After you have explained your circumstances, Centrelink will send you the appropriate forms for completion. These forms are not available online.

Once you have registered and submitted the correctly completed forms, you will be able to  download and use the Apps.

How To Manage Your Payments

A MyGov account is a convenient way for you to manage and access a number of Australian Government services, with the benefit of using one centralised login to access Centrelink, Medicare, My Aged Care and the Department of Veterans’ Affairs.

Older Carers’ Payments

If you are 65 years old and over (or 50 years old or over if you an Aboriginal or Torres Strait Islander person), and you provide care for a partner, a member of your family or a friend, you may need some extra help with your finances. The Australian Government has payment options that can support you to remain in your caring role.

In some circumstances, you may be required to choose between a Carer Payment and an Age Pension. There are benefits and disadvantages to each type of payment, depending on your personal situation. To make a comparison, please visit the Department of Human Services website.

Carer Payment

If you are caring for a person with a medical condition, disability, or who is an older frail person, you may qualify for a Carer Payment. You will be have to meet the requirements of an Income and Assets Test and provide the care for a specified period.

Carer Allowance

The Carer Allowance is paid to Carers who give additional daily care and attention to a person with a medical condition or disability, or an older frail person. You can find out more about Eligibility for the Carer Allowance here.

Additional information

For additional information on Payments for Carers aged 65 years and over, call the Carer Gateway on 1800 422 737.

If you are a Veteran, call the Department of Veterans’ Affairs on 133 254.

You can read more about the costs of help at home and aged care homes on My Aged Care.

Younger Carers’ Payments

You may be assisting a member of your family or a friend in many varied ways. You might be helping them with tasks such as shopping and cooking, cleaning,  or physically with personal care such as showering and dressing if they are unwell or frail. If you are 25 years old or under, and caring for a person, you might be able to get financial assistance from the Australian Government.

There are many options available, and it will require searching the internet and a phone call to establish whether you fit the eligibility criteria.

Below are short descriptions of several different types of payments, their purpose, who is eligible to receive them and where to find more information.

Some of these payments are specifically for young people, while others are designed for carers of all ages.

Payment Types For Young Carers

Youth Allowance

Objective: To provide a fortnightly payment to financially assist if you are studying or doing an apprenticeship full-time, looking for a job or training. Your income and housing needs will be taken into consideration when assessing your eligibility.

You may qualify if you are:

  • 16 to 21 years and searching for full-time work
  • 18 to 24 years and studying full-time
  • 16 or 17 years and have completed Year 12 or equivalent, are considered independent for Youth Allowance, or you are undertaking full-time secondary study and need to live away from home in order to study
  • 16 to 24 and undertaking an apprenticeship full-time.

Additional Information: Learn more about Youth Allowance on the Department of Human Services website.

Carer Allowance

Objective: To provide a fortnightly income supplement for Carers or Parents who are providing additional daily care and attention to a dependent child or an adult.

Criteria: You may qualify to receive this payment if you care for someone with a medical condition or disability, or an older frail person, even if you are working or studying.

Additinal Information: Learn more about Carer Allowance on the Department of Human Services website.

Carer Payment

Objective: To provide financial support if you are unable to work because you provide ‘full-time daily care’ for a person.

Criteria: You may qualify to receive this payment if you provide constant ongoing care for a person with a mental condition or severe disability, who is elderly and frail. You will be have to meet the requirements of an Income and Assets Test and provide the care for a specified period.

Additional Information: Learn more about Carer Payment on the Department of Human Services website.

Disability Support Pension

Objective: To provide financial support if you have a permanent intellectual, psychiatric or physical condition that prevents you from working.

Criteria: You may qualify for this payment if you are over 16 years, and have a permanent medical condition that prevents you from working 15 hours or more a week in the next 2 years, and you meet the requirements of an Income and Assets Test.

Additional Information: Learn more about Disability Support Pension on the Department of Human Services website.

Young Carer Bursary Programme

Objective: To provide a bursary (financial assistance) to reduce your need to find a part-time job if you are training or studying and taking care of a person.

Criteria: You may qualify for this bursary if you are aged 12 to 25 years or under, in TAFE, secondary education or university training or studying.

Additional Information: Learn more about the Young Carers Bursary Programme here.

ABSTUDY

Objective: To provide a fortnightly payment if you are an Aboriginal or Torres Strait Islander without other Government assistance.

Criteria: You may qualify for this payment if you are an Aboriginal or Torres Strait Islander undertaking an apprenticeship or studying.

Additional Information: Learn more about ABSTUDY on the Department of Human Services website.

Where To Start?

You might find it helpful to utilise the Department of Human Services’ online Payment Finder tool to narrow down the possibilities.

Once you understand the types of Carer Payments available, it may be helpful to contact Carers Australia for more information. Call 1800 242 636.

You can contact Centrelink on 132 717. As you may have to wait a while, it is advisable to call from somewhere comfortable. The initial steps cannot be completed online.

If it’s your first contact with Centrelink, you will be required to respond to recorded questions and state out aloud that you do not have a Customer Access Number before being transferred to a Centrelink staff member.

If you are already registered with Centrelink, please have your Customer Access Number (also called a Customer Reference Number) and PIN on hand when you make the call. You will be prompted to key them in during the call.

After you have explained your circumstances, Centrelink will send you the appropriate forms for completion. These forms are not available online.

Once you have registered and submitted the correctly completed forms, you will be able to  download and use the Express Plus Centrelink Apps.

Other Assistance Available

You may also be eligible for assistance with planned respite care in your home, or for educational support.

For more information about the types of support options available, phone Carers Australia on 1800 242 636 or visit the Young Carers.

Disabilities and Financial Support

If you provide care for a person with a disability, you may be eligible for a range of Government schemes designed to assist you meet the costs involved.

Payment Types

Carer Payment

Carer Allowance

Carer Supplement

There are rules about eligibility for each of these payments.

In some circumstances, the eligibility criteria for the payments are linked. As an example, if you receive a Carer Allowance and you are caring for a child under 16 years who has a disability, you may also qualify for the Child Disability Assistance Payment. This is an annual payment that can be used for extra costs, such as therapies and aids for the child, or respite care.

See Carer Payments Explained for additional information.

Disability Support Pension

A Disability Support Pension provides financial assistance for a person over 16 years with an intellectual, physical or psychiatric (mental) condition that stops them from working. To be eligible for the pension, the person you care for will need to provide medical evidence of their illness, disability or injury.

Carers’ Tax Offsets

If you provide care for a person with a disability, and neither you nor the person you care for has received Disability or Carer payments for the full financial year, you may be eligible for Tax Offsets.

Tax Offsets, are sometimes referred to as rebates, and they reduce the amount of tax you pay on your taxable income. Your eligibility will be assessed from your tax returns.

You can estimate the Tax Offsets you may be entitled to in any financial year by using the online Invalid & Invalid Carer Tax Offset Calculator.

Additional Sources of Financial Assistance

You might be eligible for a special annual payment to help with the cost of running essential medical equipment at home, such as a dialysis machine or an oxygen concentrator.

You might also qualify for financial support for the cost of continence products if the person you care for has permanent and severe bowel or bladder incontinence.

Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Carers’ Payments

You may be eligible to receive payments from a number of Government programmes if you are an Aboriginal or Torres Strait Islander looking after a person who has a disability, is sick, or is an older frail person.

Some payments are for all Carers generally, while others are specifically for Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Carers.

By providing care for a family member or friend, it allows you to keep them in the community and safe. However, providing care can also put pressure on your finances.

Where To Find Available Payments?

To find out about what resources and payments are available, and if they are right for you, you will be required to search the internet followed by making a phone call.

You might find it helpful to utilise the Department of Human Services’ online Payment Finder tool to narrow down the possibilities. At some point, you will also need to call Centrelink on 132 717.

If you prefer, a good place to start might be to talk to an Aboriginal Health Worker, Community Worker, or someone else you know who can explain what you need to do to find out about the payment process.

You can also call Medicare’s Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Access Line on 1800 556 955 to speak with one of their staff.

ABSTUDY

ABSTUDY is a Government programme designed to help Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islanders who are studying at a college, school or university or undertaking an apprenticeship.

The programme may be able to assist you with the cost of living expenses, education and prescription medicines if you require them.

The steps to follow:

  1. Check if you are eligible by visiting ABSTUDY’s website.
  2. Register your intent to lodge a claim by visiting a Department of Human Services (DHS) Service Centre or call 1800 132 317. Alternatively, you can send them an Online Message and they will return your call. Registering will assist you to get paid from the earliest possible date.
  3. Obtain a form to lodge a claim. You can call 1800 132 317 and ask them to send it to you, or print one from here Claiming page at ABSTUDY, or alternatively collect one at a DHS Service Centre.
  4. You will have to post the form to the Department of Human Services, Student Services, Reply Paid 7804, Canberra BC ACT 2610, or alternatively, you can deliver it to a DHS Service Centre.

If you are under the age of 15 years, a parent or guardian can register and claim on your behalf.

Other Payment Options

As a Carer, you may qualify for other payment options. For example, the Carer Allowance is for Carers who are providing daily care and attention for a person with a medical condition or disability or who an older frail person.

The Carer Payment can assist if you are unable to support yourself with paid employment due to the demands of your caring role.

Additional Information

If you are a Young Carer and going to school, you may also be able to get further assistance with a break from caring (respite care) or help at home.

If you need respite, Commonwealth Respite and Carelink Centres may be able to organise either short-term or emergency respite services.

If you require the services of a ‘Respite Care Service’Home Care Provider or Grief Counsellor, please use our Business Directory Search facility.

By |2018-07-22T10:58:22+00:00March 1st, 2018|Becoming A Carer|0 Comments

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