Payment types

Your child’s living arrangements determine which allowance or supplement you get.

Both you and your child need to meet eligibility criteria to get an allowance or supplement. Check you’re eligible before you claim.

We’ll assess your claim, then tell you which payment you’re eligible for and how much you’ll get.

Your child’s living arrangements will determine which allowance or supplement you get for them.

Boarding Allowance

This allowance can help your family with the cost of boarding fees if your child lives away from home when they go to school. It may include both:

  • Basic Boarding Allowance
  • Additional Boarding Allowance.

You can get Boarding Allowance if your child meets eligibility criteria and boards at:

  • school
  • a hostel
  • private home or boarding accommodation.

You may also get Additional Boarding Allowance depending on your parental income and the specific cost of boarding fees. Learn about how we apply the parental means test.

Distance Education Allowance

This allowance can help your family with the cost of your child studying an approved course from home.

You can get Distance Education Allowance for your child if both of these apply:

When your child is living at home they must be doing one of the following:

  • doing approved home schooling
  • doing approved distance education
  • going to a Northern Territory Homeland Education Centre.

Second Home Allowance

This allowance can help you or your family maintain a second home so your children can go to a local school. You can get the allowance for up to 3 children. You must lodge a claim for each child.

You can get this allowance if both of these apply:

  • you meet eligibility criteria
  • the second home makes it easier for your child to go to school than the principal family home.

To get the allowance the principal family home is either:

  • where the child you’re claiming for usually spends school holidays
  • the family’s usual place of residence.

To qualify as the principal family home at least one parent or guardian must live there. They need to live there for more than half the time they’re getting the allowance.

To us, it’s not your second home if any of the following apply:

  • you’re separated or divorced and the second home is the normal home of one of the parents
  • you, your partner or a dependent child get Rent Assistance for the home
  • you got any financial concession such as a First Home Owner Grant, Home Builders Grant, stamp-duty concession or similar assistance when you bought the home
  • you or your partner aren’t responsible for the cost of maintaining the home.

The child can be in the care of another person in the second home.

Pensioner Education Supplement

You can get Assistance for Isolated Children Pensioner Education Supplement for your child if all of these apply:

  • you meet eligibility criteria
  • the child is studying at primary or an ungraded level of study
  • be getting Disability Support Pension or Parenting Payment (single).

They are also in one of the following living arrangements:

  • board away from home
  • live in a second home so they can go to a local school
  • study by distance education or do approved home schooling.

If you get Assistance for Isolated Children Pensioner Education Supplement you can’t get any other allowance under the scheme for the child.

You can get this payment until your child turns 21, as long as you’re still eligible.

Page last updated: 25 November 2022