1.1.M.136 Merit or equity-based scholarship


A merit or equity-based scholarship is a scholarship that is awarded to a student to:

  • recognise the student's achievement in studying or in undertaking research at an educational institution, or
  • enable the student to study or undertake research at an educational institution.

A scholarship granted to a student for either of these purposes is treated as exempt income for social security purposes to the extent that the payment does not exceed the person's threshold of $8,355 in a calendar year (in 2021).

The value of this threshold is indexed on 1 January each year.

Note: Merit or equity-based scholarships do not include Commonwealth scholarships or relocation scholarships, which are excluded amounts for social security purposes.

Act reference: SSAct section 8(8)(zjd) Excluded amounts-general, section 8(8AA) For the purposes of paragraph (8)(zjd), each of the following is an excluded payment …, section 8(8AB) For the purposes of paragraph (8)(zjd), a person's threshold amount …

Last reviewed: 1 July 2021