The Guides to Social Policy Law is a collection of publications designed to assist decision makers administering social policy law. The information contained in this publication intended only as a guide to social security payments. The information is accurate as at the date listed at the bottom of the page, but may be subject to change. To discuss individual circumstances please contact Services Australia. Caring exemption for under 18s

Circumstances of exemption

This exemption may be available in situations in which the young person is required to provide full-time care to an immediate family member with a temporary incapacity.

Example 1: Immediate family could include the person's parent, guardian, partner or sibling for whom the young person has sole care because the parents cannot exercise their responsibilities.

Example 2: Close family could include the person's aunts and uncles.

Act reference: SSAct section 543A(2A)(g) … is required to provide full-time care …, section 23(1) Dictionary, section 23(15) For the purposes of Part 2.11 …

Policy reference: SS Guide 1.1.M.160 Mutual obligation requirements, 3.11.9 Mutual obligation requirements for early school leavers

Duration of exemption

The recipient can be given an exemption for up to 13 weeks, which can be extended subject to regular review. If longer than 13 weeks is required, it probably indicates that another payment, such as CP or CA may be more appropriate.

Act reference: SSAct section 543A(2B) If the following circumstances exist in relation to …

Policy reference: SS Guide Qualification for CP, Qualification for CA

Mutual obligation requirements (1.1.M.160)

The recipient is not required to undertake full-time study or training for the duration of their exemption if they do not have capacity. However, an exemption from undertaking full-time study or training does not necessarily exempt the young person from needing to meet mutual obligation requirements in order to qualify for payment. Delegates have discretion to determine whether other more appropriate requirements are necessary. Young people who, because of caring responsibilities, are unable to work full-time are still expected to undertake study or training or other approved activities appropriate to their capacity.

Act reference: SSAct section 543A(2A)(g) … is required to provide full-time care …, section 544B(4)(d) … the family and caring responsibilities …

SS(Admin)Act section 40L Circumstances making it unreasonable etc. to comply with requirements

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