3.6.4.10 Qualification for CP

Qualification (1.1.Q.10) criteria

To qualify for CP, a person must meet the criteria listed in the following table. Where more detail about a criterion is required, the second column indicates where you will find this.

Criterion More Detail

ALL of the following

The carer (1.1.C.40) personally provides constant care (1.1.C.310) for:

  • a higher ADAT score adult (1.1.H.63), OR
  • a lower ADAT score adult and a dependent child (1.1.L.130), OR
  • a child with severe disability (1.1.S.133) or severe medical condition (1.1.S.130), OR
  • 2 or more children each with disability or medical condition (combined care) (1.1.C.195), OR
  • one or more children each with disability or medical condition and a lower ADAT score adult (multiple care) (1.1.M.155), OR
  • a child aged under 16 who has a terminal condition (1.1.T.86), AND

Note: For the purposes of CP (child) grandfathering arrangements (1.1.G.55) allow a person who was receiving CP under pre 1 July 2009 qualification provisions to continue to qualify under those provisions on or after 1 July 2009.

Note: Separated or divorced parents exchanging care of children with disability or medical condition can qualify for CP (child) (1.1.C.361) under the exchanged care (1.1.E.162) provisions.

SS Guide 3.6.4.37 Qualification for CP (child) - Exchanged Care

Note: Carers of children with disability who do not qualify for CP may be eligible for PP, NSA or YA (job seeker) as principal carers. Principal carers who are subject to mandatory participation requirements may be able to access an exemption from participation requirements on a case-by-case basis based on the carer's capacity to work part-time or look for part-time work in situations where they are caring for one or more children with a disability.

The care is provided in the home of the person/s being cared for, AND

3.6.4.37 Qualification for CP (child) - Exchanged Care

3.6.4.40 Qualification for CP during Temporary Cessation of Care

3.6.4.50 Qualification for CP during Temporary Absence from the Private Home - Hospitalisation

3.6.4.80 Qualification for CP during Overseas Travel

The person/s receiving care:

  • meets the definition of a care receiver (1.1.C.20), AND
  • passes the care receiver income and assets tests, OR
  • is a higher ADAT score adult receiving a social security or DVA pension/benefit, OR
  • is a higher ADAT score adult who would receive a social security or DVA pension/benefit if they had been an Australian resident for a long enough period, AND
3.6.4.30 CP Qualification- Higher ADAT Score Adult is Not Receiving an Australian Government Income Support Payment
The carer is in Australia, AND 3.6.4.80 Qualification for CP during Overseas Travel
Residence requirements are met, AND This topic

Additionally for CP (child)

The care is required permanently or for a minimum period of 6 months, unless the condition is terminal (1.1.T.86), short term (1.1.S.172) or episodic (1.1.E.132). 1.1.P.230 Permanently or for an extended period (CP, CA)

Additionally for CP (adult)

The care is required permanently or for a minimum period of 6 months, unless the condition is terminal (1.1.T.86). 1.1.P.230 Permanently or for an extended period (CP, CA)

Note: There is no legislative restriction on a carer receiving CP for a care receiver who in turn receives CP for caring for another care receiver. However, if this situation arises a social worker should determine whether the person who qualifies a carer for CP while providing care to another care receiver, is in fact personally providing constant care (1.1.C.310). If not he or she ceases to qualify for CP.

Act reference: SSAct section 7(2) An Australian resident…, section 197A Overview-circumstances in which person is qualified for CP, Schedule 1A clause 140 Person whose CP was cancelled on or after 1 July 2008 and before 1 July 2010, Schedule 1A clause 141 Saving-profoundly disabled child and disabled child

Working credit participants

A CP recipient who has a working credit balance and who ceases to provide constant care for more than 25 hours a week and part or all of the cessation is due to taking up or increasing paid work, is treated as still being qualified for the period it takes to run down their working credit balance. This allows the person to benefit from their working credit balance, and assists them in their transition to work.

This treatment will continue until the earliest of:

  • their working credit balance is reduced to nil, or
  • qualification (other than related to the employment) is lost, or
  • payability (other than related to employment income) is lost.

Act reference: SSAct section 1073J Working credit balance prevents loss of qualification in certain cases

Policy reference: SS Guide 3.1.11.30 Working credit depletion

Care for shorter periods

If care is required for periods of less than 3 months duration for care provided to a child, or less than 6 months duration for care provided to an adult, and the care receiver's condition is not terminal, the carer may test their eligibility for SpB.

Example: If the care receiver has a broken leg, or requires short term post-operative care.

Policy reference: SS Guide 3.7.1 SpB - qualification & payability

Sharing of care responsibilities & dual care situations

If more than one person provides care, then details of the amount and frequency of this other care must be provided, to determine whether each person personally provides constant care.

Example: A family member, nurse or friend assists the person with care on an occasional basis. The person provides substantial care and is considered to be personally providing constant care. The family member, nurse or friend who provides occasional care does not meet the constant care requirement.

In situations where the care is shared and neither carer provides a sufficient degree of care to meet the requirements, neither carer qualifies for CP.

Policy reference: SS Guide 1.1.C.310 Constant care (CP)

More than one carer - child with severe disability or severe medical condition

If the care receiver is a child with severe disability or severe medical condition, the level of care required may mean that there is more than one carer. In these situations it would generally be accepted that continuous care is being provided. The THP medical report will identify the number of carers required. However, if doubt exists, then further investigation may be appropriate.

Example: A social worker home visit.

Explanation: A child that meets the definition of a child with severe disability or severe medical condition requires a very high level of care to maintain comfort, sustain life and attend to bodily functions that the child cannot manage by him or herself.

Policy reference: SS Guide 1.1.T.188 Two or more carers (CP)

More than one carer - adult with a disability

It is possible that an adult with a disability may have more than one carer who makes a claim for CP. More than one carer can qualify and receive payment in their own right, if:

  • each carer provides constant care for the care receiver, AND
  • each person can fully satisfy the qualification criteria, AND
  • an ADAT is completed for the care receiver and a score of 80 or above is achieved with a THP score component of 32 or more.

Example: Mrs Brown's son Mike has become a quadriplegic and suffered brain damage as a result of a car accident. He has an ADAT score of 135 with a total professional questionnaire score of 52. Mrs Brown and her 2 sisters each provide care. Mrs Brown provides 14 hours care and each of her sisters provide 8 hours care. There is an overlap in the mornings and evenings when 2 carers are needed to accomplish Mike's needs. As each carer is providing the equivalent of a working day of care, they could not be expected to sustain workforce participation. They each, therefore, meet the constant care requirement.

Policy reference: SS Guide 1.1.T.188 Two or more carers (CP)

Income & assets testing

The care receiver is subject to income and assets testing as follows:

If the care receiver is… Then they…
a higher ADAT score adult and receiving a social security/DVA pension or benefit, are exempt from the care receivers income and assets tests.
a higher ADAT score adult and the only reason they don't receive a social security/DVA pension or benefit, is that they do not meet the necessary residence requirements for that payment, are still required to meet the ordinary income and assets tests as though they were receiving a social security/DVA income support payment.
a higher ADAT score adult who does not fit either of the above situations, or a lower ADAT score adult, must meet the care receiver income and assets test.
a child with severe disability or severe medical condition, or 2 or more children each with a disability or medical condition, must meet the care receiver income and assets test.
an adult with a disability and one or more children each with disability or medical condition must meet the care receiver income and assets tests.

The carer is always subject to the pension income and assets test.

Act reference: SSAct section 198A to 198Q Income test

Policy reference: SS Guide 3.6.4.30 CP Qualification - Higher ADAT Score Adult is Not Receiving an Australian Government Income Support Payment, Part 4 Income & Assets, 4.2.5 CP income & assets tests

Residence

To qualify for CP the carer must be an Australian resident.

Exception: The carer is in a country in which CP may be granted under an international social security agreement.

Claim requirements are that the carer and care receiver must be Australian residents and in Australia on the day the claim is lodged, unless claiming under an international social security agreement.

The care receiver must be an Australian resident unless they are a higher ADAT score adult in receipt of a social security pension and CP may be granted under an international social security agreement.

Act reference: SSAct section 198(4) Carer in Australia

SS(Admin)Act section 29 General rule

Policy reference: SS Guide 3.6.4.90 Payability of CP

Proper claim

A person must lodge a proper claim before CP can be granted.

Policy reference: SS Guide 8.1.1 Claim Lodgement Provisions

Comparable foreign payment (1.1.C.230)

If a person claims CP when they would be entitled to a CFP, their claim can be rejected if they fail to seek that payment.

Act reference: SS(Admin)Act section 66 Notice to obtain foreign payment, section 40 Rejection of claim for failure to obtain foreign payment

Policy reference: SS Guide Part 7 Portability & comparable foreign payment (CFP)

Last reviewed: 15 August 2016