The Family Tax Benefit is a two-part government payment that assists families with the costs associated with raising children. The first tax benefit, Part A, is per eligible child you care for, the second, Part B, is paid out per family for single-parent families, non-parental carers, and for some families that only have the one main source of income.

In addition to the Family Tax Benefit, you may also be eligible for child support payments if you are a parent or carer separated from the other parent. Your children will have to meet immunisation requirements and may also need to have a health check before they start school. Further eligibility requirements for both the Family Tax Benefit and child support payments are outlined below.

Eligibility criteria for Family Tax Benefit Part A and B

Not all families qualify for Family Tax Benefits. Your eligibility is determined by specific conditions, and you might be eligible for Part A, Part B, or both.

To qualify for Family Tax Benefit Parts A and B, the following criteria must be met:

  • Dependent child aged 0-15 or 16-19 must meet study criteria. Details can be found on the Services Australia website.
  • Must meet set family income criteria.
  • Residency in Australia with statuses like:
    • Australian citisenship
    • Permanent residency
    • Special Category visa
    • Some temporary visas
  • New residents usually wait a year for FTB. Exceptions can be found on the Services Australia website.
  • The child’s care must be at least 35% your responsibility.
For Part B specifically:
  • Either a single parent, grandparent caretaker, non-parent caretaker, or single-income couple.
  • Age limit for child: 13 for couples, 15 for singles, and 18 for singles if child meets study criteria.
Chart comparing eligibility requirements for Australia's Family Tax Benefit Parts A & B, including age, income, residency, and care responsibility factors.

Understanding Family Tax Benefits

Understanding the financial support available for families can be a bit confusing. In Australia, the Family Tax Benefit program is designed to offer economic relief to eligible families. This aid is primarily divided into two categories: Family Tax Benefit Part A and Part B. Below, you’ll find a comprehensive breakdown of the amounts you may be eligible to receive under each part.

Amounts for Family Tax Benefit Part A

The starting rate for Family Tax Benefit Part A is set at $63.56 for each child every two weeks. This is just the baseline figure, and the actual amount you might get could be higher or lower depending on your specific situation. At present, the highest possible rates per child every fortnight are:
  • $213.36 for a child 0 to 12 years
  • $277.48 for a child 13 to 15 years
  • $277.48 for a child 16 to 19 years who meets the study requirements
  • $68.46 for a child 0 to 19 years in an approved care organisation.
Besides the main Part A benefit, you might also qualify for an additional Part A supplementary payment. For the 2022 fiscal year, this supplementary payment could be as much as $817.60. The actual sum will differ based on factors such as the number of children you have, your total family income, whether you have shared custody, and your overall eligibility for Family Tax Benefit Part A.

If you receive Family Tax Benefit Part A as a lump sum, both the Newborn Upfront Payment and the Newborn Supplement will be included in that lump sum. If you receive Family Tax Benefit Part A fortnightly, you will receive the Newborn Upfront Payment as a lump sum and the Newborn Supplement in your regular Family Tax Benefit Part A.

Amounts for Family Tax Benefit Part B

Just like with Part A, the sum you might receive for Part B will depend on your individual circumstances. The maximum amounts currently available per family every two weeks are:
  • $181.44 if your youngest child is between 0 and 5 years old
  • $126.56 if your youngest child is between 5 and 18 years old
There’s also a supplementary payment for Part B. For the 2022 financial year, this could go up to $397.85, and for the 2023 financial year, it could be as much as $430.70. The exact amount you receive will vary, and it’s influenced by factors like your family income, whether you share childcare responsibilities, and your eligibility for the Part B benefit.
Chart detailing Australia's Family Tax Benefit A & B rates for 2022-2023, with supplementary payments and factors such as family income and shared care affecting the amount.

Understanding income limits for Family Tax Benefit Part A and B

Understanding the financial assistance available for raising children in Australia is crucial. Administered by Services Australia, the Family Tax Benefit program is a cornerstone of government support, aiding eligible families with dependent children. This program offers two types of family assistance payments: Family Tax Benefit Part A and Part B. The amount you may be eligible to receive depends on several factors, including your family’s circumstances and income. Here, we delve into the income test guidelines for each part, and how you can claim these benefits through your Centrelink online account linked to your myGov account.

Income thresholds for Family Tax Benefit Part A

Part A of the Family Tax Benefit is designed to provide significant financial support to families raising children. The income test that applies to this part is based on your adjusted family taxable income, with thresholds as follows:
  • Up to $58,108: you may qualify for the maximum Part A payment.
  • $62,634 – $111,398: your Part A payments decrease by 20 cents for each dollar over $62,634. Annual income limits may apply.
  • Over $111,398: Payments decrease by 30 cents for each dollar over this threshold, potentially reaching zero. Yearly income restrictions may disqualify you based on the number and ages of your children.

Income thresholds for Family Tax Benefit Part B

For families where one main income supports the household, Family Tax Benefit Part B provides additional help. The income thresholds for Part B are:
  • Single-Parent or Single Grandparent: maximum income of $112,578.
  • Partnered Parents or Grandparents: primary earner’s income capped at $112,578. Secondary earner up to $6,497, then reduces by 20 cents/dollar above $6,497.
  • Partnered Grandparent specifics: secondary income cap is $32,303 for youngest child under 5, and $25,149 if 5-18.
Chart summarising the income thresholds for eligibility of Family Tax Benefit Part A and Part B in Australia. Details include payment reductions based on income levels and specific thresholds for various family compositions.

How to apply for the Family Tax Benefit

To apply for the Family Tax Benefit, start by logging into your myGov account and navigate to the Centrelink section. If you haven’t yet linked Centrelink to your myGov account, you’ll need to do so first. For guidance on how to link the accounts, you can visit the relevant website.

Once your myGov account is linked with Centrelink, you can initiate your claim process by responding to the required questions available on the Services Australia website. After completing the questions, you’ll come to a section where you can formally submit your claim.

Importance of accurate family income estimates

When opting for fortnightly Family Tax Benefit payments, it’s important to give Centrelink an accurate income estimate via your myGov account linked to Centrelink. This estimate not only affects your eligibility, but also the payment amount you’ll receive.

If your family’s circumstances change, such as income or the number of dependent children, notify Centrelink promptly. Doing so is essential for the financial year-end reconciliation through Services Australia.

Overestimating income may lead to an additional lump sum payment, while underestimating could require you to pay back excess amounts. Keep your estimates current to ensure you receive the correct Family Tax Benefit you’re eligible for.

Claim online

To claim online, log into your myGov account which should be linked to Centrelink. This is your primary method for submitting your Family Tax Benefit claim.

No myGov account?

If you don’t have a myGov account, you can easily create one and then link it to Centrelink. Follow the steps outlined on the Services Australia website to do so.

Alternative claim methods

If online claiming isn’t an option for you, there are alternatives:
  • For fortnightly payments, print and complete the “Claim for Paid Parental Leave and Family Assistance” form.
  • For a lump sum payment for a past financial year, use the “Claim for an annual lump sum payment of FTB for the 2020–2021 financial year” form.
  • Alternatively, you can visit a service centre to submit your claim.

Managing your options and obligations for Family Tax Benefit

Receiving the Family Tax Benefit comes with certain obligations that you need to manage diligently. Crucially, any change in your family’s circumstances must be promptly reported to Services Australia.

Changes can include:

  • Your name or address
  • Rent payments
  • Your income or your partner’s income
  • Your child commencing or ceasing full-time secondary study from age 16
  • You or your child leaving the country, either temporarily or permanently
  • Non-requirement to lodge a tax return for you or your partner
It’s essential to abide by the time limits for confirming your income. For instance, you have a one-year window from the close of the applicable financial year to either confirm your income for ongoing Family Tax Benefit payments or to claim the benefit as a lump sum. For more details on these time limits, consult the Services Australia website via your myGov account linked to Centrelink.

By responsibly managing these obligations, you help ensure that the Family Tax Benefit you receive matches your eligibility and current circumstances.

Newborn supplement and upfront payment

These two supplementary payments offer financial support to families caring for a newborn, recently adopted child, or a child under one year who is entrusted to the applicant for at least 13 continuous weeks. If you’re not receiving Parental Leave Pay for the child in question, these supplements may be available to you.

Multiple birth allowance

For families experiencing a multiple birth of at least three children (e.g., triplets), a Multiple Birth Allowance can provide additional financial relief. Families may claim this allowance until the children turn 16 or continue full-time study.

By exploring these additional options and meeting their respective eligibility criteria, families can better navigate the costs and responsibilities of raising children. Remember to consult Services Australia via your myGov account linked to Centrelink for more details on how these supplements could benefit your family.

Next Step is to Contact TMS Financials

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This outline is for general information only and not as legal, tax or accounting advice. It may not be accurate, complete or current. It is not official and not from a government institution. Always consult a qualified professional for specific advice tailored to your unique circumstances.

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