Income and assets tests

You must meet an income and assets test to get Farm Household Allowance (FHA).

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Income test

Your total income must be below the cut off for the JobSeeker Payment income test.

This is your farm business income and non-farm income combined.

Farm business income estimate

Farm business income includes the income from your farm enterprise and directly related businesses. You need to estimate your farm business income, including any allowable deductions. You do this for the current financial year when you claim, and again each financial year. We use this estimate to work out if you’re eligible for FHA.

You can update your estimate at any time. You should update it within 14 days of a change.

Read more about estimating business income.

Non-farm business income

If your business income from a non-farm enterprise will be different from your latest tax return, you can provide us with an estimate for the current financial year both:

  • when you claim
  • each financial year.

Non-farm income

Your non-farm income can affect your payment. You must tell us how much you earn each fortnight. Read how to report your income.

Farm business losses

If your farm is losing money, we’ll use that loss to offset your non-farm income. We’ll do this if you earn less than $0 from your combined farm business activities. We’ll calculate your farm business loss as an average fortnightly amount. We’ll then reduce your fortnightly non-farm income by that amount when working out how much you can get. We’ll use farm losses to reduce non-farm income up to $100,000 per individual or couple, each financial year.

You don’t have to apply to offset your income. We’ll assess this when you report your income.

To find out more about farm business losses, call the Farmer Assistance Hotline.

Forced disposal of livestock

We may exempt money you get from the forced disposal of livestock from the income test. We’ll exempt the income if you deposit it in a Farm Management Account.

Forced disposal includes selling or destroying livestock due to drought or natural disaster. It may also include any of the following:

  • when your farm can’t support the livestock
  • when you have concern for the welfare of the livestock
  • when the law requires you to dispose of the livestock.

You must tell us if you get money from the forced disposal of livestock.

Assets test

To get Farm Household Allowance you need to meet an assets test. Your combined personal and farm assets must be below $5.5 million.

Assets include any of the following:

  • farmland
  • farm machinery
  • livestock and crops
  • houses, excluding your principal residence on land up to 2 hectares
  • home contents
  • cash
  • all financial accounts including farm management deposits.

You must tell us of any changes to your circumstances.

Page last updated: 28 September 2023.
QC 38026