Income and assets test

Your rate of Carer Payment depends on what you get paid and own. The person you provide care for also has to have income and assets under certain limits.

If you already get an income support payment from us and are granted this payment, your other payment will stop

Income and assets tests for carers

If you’re eligible, the amount you’ll get paid is based on the income test or assets test.

Income test for carers

Income includes money from working and financial assets such as superannuation or dividends from shares.

If you’re single and your income is more than $2,318.00 per fortnight before tax, you’re not eligible for Carer Payment.

If the combined income of you and your partner is more than $3,544.00 per fortnight before tax, you’re not eligible for Carer Payment.

If the combined income of you and your partner who are living apart due to ill health is more than $4,592.00 per fortnight before tax, you’re not eligible for Carer Payment.

If your and your partner’s combined income is less than this, we may pay you a reduced amount. Learn more about the income test.

If you report your partner’s income over the limit, we may need to suspend your payment. This will only occur if the income is over the limit 6 fortnights in a row. You won’t need to reapply for the payment. We’ll let you know how long your payment is suspended for. This applies if your partner is either:

Assets test for carers

Assets include any property or possessions you own in full, in part, or have an interest in. It doesn’t include your family home or the first 2 hectares around it. It does include both:

  • assets held outside of Australia
  • debts owed to you.

The assets limit and cut off point depend on your personal situation. This includes if you’re single or have a partner.

Learn more about the assets test for Carer Payment.

Income and assets limits for the person you provide care for

If the person you care for doesn’t get a pension or benefit from us or the Department of Veterans’ Affairs, their:

  • income must be less than $135,640 a year before tax
  • assets must be worth less than $836,750.

These figures change each year.

The tests can also include the income and assets of some family members.

The assets test:

  • doesn’t include the principal home and first 2 hectares surrounding it
  • may allow you to get Carer Payment if the person getting care has assets over $836,750.

Example of how a change in household income can change your eligibility

Michael and Tim were in an accident. Michael didn’t sustain any injuries. Tim’s injury will take about 12 months to recover. Michael needs to take time away from his job to care for Tim. Michael isn’t sure if he’s eligible for Carer Payment.

Before the accident, Michael and Tim were paying off a mortgage and their household income was $2,600 before tax each fortnight. They didn’t hold any other income or assets such as shares or savings.

Now Tim has stopped working. Michael is working less hours each week but caring full time, their combined income has reduced to $750 before tax per fortnight.

Their fortnightly household income and their combined assets are less than the cut off points. With their household income, Michael could be eligible for Carer Payment. When he starts his claim we’ll ask him more details about himself and the care he provides Tim.

Page last updated: 1 January 2024.
QC 30466