3.6.7.35 Qualification for CA (child) - Automatic Qualification for CA (child) through Qualification for CP (child)

Qualification

From 1 July 2009, a person who qualifies for CP will 'automatically' qualify for CA for each of the care receivers aged under 16 years for whom they are providing constant care and whose care qualifies the person for CP.

In order to qualify automatically for CA, the person must qualify for CP for providing care to:

  • a child with severe disability or severe medical condition, OR
  • 2 or more children with a disability or medical condition whose care equates to the care level of a child with a severe disability or severe medical condition (combined care), OR
  • a disabled adult and one or more children each with a disability or medical condition (multiple care), OR
  • 2 or more children with severe disability or severe medical condition or disability or medical condition on an exchange care basis, OR
  • a child with severe disability or severe medical condition on a short-term or episodic basis, OR
  • a child who has been certified by a medical practitioner has having a terminal condition, OR
  • a profoundly disabled child or 2 or more disabled children (i.e. under the saved pre-1 July 2009 qualifications).

Example: Francine qualifies for CP for providing care to 3 children with disability. Francine will automatically qualify for CA for each of those children and remain qualified for CA for the period she remains qualified for CP.

Act reference: SSAct section 954B Qualification for CA-receiving carer payment for caring for child or children

An adult & 1 or more children

A person who qualifies for CP for providing care to a disabled adult and one or more children each with disability or medical condition (multiple care) will automatically qualify for CA for the child/children to whom they are providing care, but not the adult.

Act reference: SSAct section 954B(a)(i) and (ii) Qualification for CA-receiving carer payment for caring for child or children

Two people qualified for CA for the same care receiver or care receivers

CA can be shared by 2 carers, who are not members of the same couple, who share the care for the same care receiver or care receivers, provided the Secretary is satisfied both carers meet the qualification criteria for CA.

The Secretary must make a declaration specifying the share of CA that each of the carers is to receive if more than one carer claims CA for the same care receiver. Until the declaration under this section is made, only one of the 2 carers involved can receive CA. The proportion of CA each carer is to receive is the share specified in the declaration. This may be the proportion calculated on the basis of the amount of care provided because of the disability or the proportion agreed by the carers.

Exchanged care

IF ONLY ONE PERSON qualifies for CP (child) and the care of the child/ren is exchanged, the person will qualify for CA automatically for each of the children that qualify them for CP. If the person is the only CP claimant/recipient then they will be entitled to receive 100% of the rate of CA for each child in their care.

IF 2 CARERS in receipt of CP (child) are exchanging the care of qualifying children, then the rate of CA payable to each carer is to be determined by the Secretary. The rate will usually be equal to the percentage of care specified in the parenting plan.

Example: John and Mary are divorced and provide care for their 3 children with disability, Alice, Frank and Paul. Alice has a severe disability and her continuous personal care needs qualify a carer for CP. Frank and Paul each have disability and their combined personal care needs qualify a carer for CP. John and Mary exchange the care of the children in accordance with their parenting plan. John provides care to Frank and Paul 10 days per fortnight and provides care to Alice for the other 4 days. Both John and Mary qualify for CP and therefore CA automatically for each child. The amount of CA that John and Mary receive will be determined by the delegate of the Secretary, based on the care each provides to each child.

Act reference: SSAct section 964 CA not payable to 2 people for the same care receiver or care receivers unless declaration made, section 974 Rate of CA, section 981 Secretary may make declaration where 2 people are qualified for CA for the same care receiver or care receivers

Policy reference: SS Guide 3.6.7.110 Payability of CA - Carers with Shared Care Responsibilities

Members of a couple

Only one member of a couple can receive CA for the same care receiver under the age of 16 years, that is, CA cannot be shared between members of a couple. However, CA does not have to be received by the same person who is receiving CP for that care receiver.

If one member of a couple is receiving CA for a care receiver and the other member of a couple qualifies for CP (child) for the same care receiver, only one person will receive CA. If both members of a couple qualify for CP (child) for one care receiver, only one person will receive CA.

Act reference: SSAct section 965 CA not payable to more than one member of a couple

CA (child) - carer already in receipt of CA

If a carer is in receipt of CA (child) as of 30 June 2010, they will remain qualified until they are cancelled, suspended or transferred to another payment (e.g. CA (adult)).

After 1 July 2010, if a carer is in receipt of CA (child) and they apply for CP (child) under the DCLA, and are assessed as not qualified, CA (child) must be cancelled.

Note: This does not apply for List of Recognised Disabilities (LORD).

If a carer is already in receipt of CA for a care receiver under the age of 16 years, and then subsequently qualifies for CP (child) for that care receiver, the person remains qualified for CA under SSAct section 953 and the automatic CA provisions do not apply.

If a carer ceases to qualify under section 953, for any reason, then the carer will qualify for automatic CA for as long as the carer qualifies for and receives CP (child).

Act reference: SSAct section 953 Qualification for CA-caring for either 1 or 2 disabled children

CA (child) not automatically granted - a disabled adult & a dependent child of the adult

A person who qualifies for CP (adult) for providing care to a disabled adult and a dependent child of the adult (i.e. under SSAct section 198(2)(d)) does not automatically qualify for CA for the dependent child, as the child may or may not have a disability or medical condition.

However, if the dependent child is aged 6 years or over CA must be payable for the child in order for the carer to qualify for CP. The person who is qualified for CA may be the disabled adult, or the disabled adult's partner (who may or may not be the disabled adult's carer).

Act reference: SSAct section 953 Qualification for CA-caring for either 1 or 2 disabled children, section 954B(a)(ii) Qualification for CA-receiving carer payment for caring for child or children

Last reviewed: 16 May 2016