Non-parent carer

If you provide care for a child and aren’t the parent, you may be able to receive child support from both parents. You must apply for a child support assessment.

Who’s a non-parent carer

A non-parent carer can include:

  • legal guardians
  • grandparents
  • foster carers
  • kinship carers.

Who can apply

You can apply for a non-parent carer child support assessment if both of the following apply:

  • you care for a child for at least 128 nights a year
  • you aren’t the partner of either parent of the child.

If you apply for a child support assessment, you must apply to receive child support from both parents, unless:

  • one parent doesn’t live in Australia, or a reciprocating jurisdiction
  • one parent has died
  • there are special circumstances you can’t, such as the identity of one parent is unknown.

We’ll consider other requirements before deciding to accept your application. We also need to be satisfied that the person or people you name in your application are legally the parents of the child.

Read more in chapters 2.1.1 and 2.1.3 of the Child Support Guide on the Department of Social Services website.

How we work out your child support

We work out your child support based on the income of both parents, and the amount of care that you and the parents give the child. We don’t take your income into account.

How to apply

To receive child support if you are a non-parent carer, you’ll need to apply for a child support assessment.

You can start a new child support case online.

Apply for child support

Grandparent, Foster and Kinship Carer Advisers can help you with tailored information about payments and support services based on your circumstances.

Page last updated: 11 April 2023.
QC 27956