Dependent or independent

When you apply for Youth Allowance for students and Australian Apprentices, we’ll assess you as being either dependent or independent.

When we consider you dependent

If you’re 21 or younger, we’ll consider you dependent unless you meet one of the conditions that make you independent.

If you’re dependent we’ll use one of the following to work out how much you can get:

Your parents’ or guardians’ income will affect your payment. If they earn too much, you won’t be able to get a payment. Use our Payment and Service Finder to find out if you can get a payment and how much you could get. This will be an estimate only and depends on you entering accurate information. You’ll need to enter your parents’ or guardians’ income along with other details.

When we consider you independent

If you’re 22 or older, we’ll treat you as permanently independent. If you’re younger than 22, you may be permanently independent or your independence may be reviewable.

Permanent independence means you’ll always be independent. Reviewable independence means if your circumstances change, you might be dependent again.

If you’re independent, we’ll work out how much money you can get using one or more of the following:

When you’re independent, your parents’ or guardians’ income won’t affect your payment.

You’re not independent just because you don’t live with your parents or guardians, or they don’t support you.

Page last updated: 17 November 2022