Support for non-parent carers

We provide support to grandparents, foster carers, kinship carers and informal carers who provide ongoing care for a child.

Payments and services to help non-parent carers

There is help available if you're not the parent of the child you care for.

Non-parent carers who are caring for children and live in the same house as a parent are generally not eligible for payments. If you are in this situation you can contact us to discuss your circumstances.

Child Care Subsidy helps with the cost of approved child care. You may be eligible if you have at least 14% care of the child and are responsible for paying child care fees for the child.

Additional Child Care Subsidy gives some families extra assistance with the cost of approved child care. You may be able to get an additional subsidy if you're any of the following:

  • a grandparent or great grandparent, getting an income support payment
  • transitioning from certain income support payments to work
  • in temporary financial hardship.

You may also get Additional Child Care Subsidy if you’re caring for a child who is vulnerable or at risk of harm, abuse or neglect. Your child care service should apply for the Child Wellbeing subsidy on your behalf.

Family Tax Benefit helps with the costs of raising or caring for children. You may be eligible if you’re the carer of your children, grandchildren, foster children or your adopted children.

Double Orphan Pension helps with the costs of caring for children who experience any of the following:

  • their parents have both died
  • one parent has died and the other is in a psychiatric institution or nursing home for an indefinite time, in prison for at least 10 years or their whereabouts are unknown
  • they're a refugee and both parents are living outside Australia or their whereabouts are unknown.

Assistance for Isolated Children Scheme helps carers of school aged students if they either:

  • live in an isolated area
  • can’t go to an appropriate state school daily because they have disability or special health needs.

Grandparent, Foster and Kinship Carer Advisers help non-parent carers who provide ongoing care for children. Our Advisers give tailored help if you’re a non-parent carer such as:

  • grandparent carer
  • foster carer
  • kinship carer
  • informal carers.

Our Payment and Service Finder helps you identify possible payments for your family. You can also see how much Family Tax Benefit or Child Care Subsidy you may be able to get.

Payments and services when you’re a carer for a child with disability

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We have payments to help non-parent carers who provide care to a child who has a disability or medical condition.

Carer Payment helps if you’re unable to work in paid employment because you’re providing full time care to someone with a:

  • severe disability or medical condition
  • or who is frail aged.

You may also get Carer Allowance if you provide care for a child 16 years or younger.

Carer Allowance is a supplement available if you’re providing additional daily care and attention to someone:

  • with disability
  • a severe medical condition.

Carer Supplement is an annual lump sum payment to help with the costs of caring for a person with:

  • a disability
  • medical condition.

Child Disability Assistance Payment is an annual lump sum payment. This payment helps with the costs of caring for a child with disability.

Carer Adjustment Payment is a one off payment. This payment helps families adjust following a catastrophic event where a child 7 years or younger either has a:

  • severe illness
  • medical condition
  • severe disability.

What is needed to make a claim

When you claim a payment, we’ll ask you for certain documents or information. You need to provide these before you can submit your claim.  This may include the following;

  • Personal details such as TFN for you and your partner, family income details, residence details, bank account details.
  • Child details including name and date of birth.
  • Proof of the birth or adoption, if not already established with us.
  • Details of the previous carer.
  • Care arrangements.

Provide evidence of your care

We may ask for evidence to show the child is in your care. Evidence can include any of the following:

  • a diary or calendar showing when you care for the child
  • a court order or parenting plan, with evidence that you’re doing what it says
  • proof of foster care placement
  • details of your child's care arrangements form signed by both carers
  • documents that show the child is in day care, school or other regular activities
  • records of visits to health care or other services
  • proof of travel arrangements such as, airline bookings or passports showing travel dates.

Other evidence may also include social worker reports and records from other government departments which may confirm patterns of care.

We may also ask for statements from professional members of the community. This could be someone who has regular contact with your family, such as:

  • teachers
  • police
  • ministers of religion
  • accountants
  • lawyers
  • pharmacists
  • doctors.

Evidence of statements made by other people can include voice recordings, text messages and social media posts. You can’t give us any verbal or written statements from anyone under 18.

Medicare services

A Medicare Card helps you with some health expenses, like free doctor visits at health clinics.

There are other Medicare services available if you're not the parent of the child you care for.

Australian Childhood Immunisation Register is a national register that records vaccinations given to children.

Child Dental Benefits Schedule provides access to benefits for basic dental services for children.

Medicare Safety Net helps with the costs of out of hospital medical services that attract a Medicare benefit.

Pharmaceutical Benefits Scheme (PBS) Safety Net can reduce the cost of prescription medicines once the threshold has been reached.

Child support for non-parent carers

If you care for a child and aren’t the parent, you may get child support from both parents. Read about applying for child support as a non-parent carer.

Any child support you receive may affect how much Family Tax Benefit (FTB) Part A you get. Read about Child support and your Family Tax Benefit Part A.

Other government and community support services

There are a range of other organisations that provide support services and useful information you may find helpful. You can use Payment and Service Finder to locate assistance in your local area.

Page last updated: 23 October 2023.
QC 21936