Generally, the relevant period is the financial year for which FTB is being paid. However, if the individual has separated, reconciled, or gained an FTB child during the financial year, the relevant period is the period during which the individual is entitled to receive maintenance for the FTB child or children.
Example: Mary has one child from a previous relationship. She is receiving FTB payments for the child from 1 July. On 5 October Mary and the father of her child reconciled. The relevant period for Mary's entitlement to maintenance for her child in that financial year would be from 1 July to 4 October.
Note: The relevant period does not apply to capitalised maintenance income. Capitalised maintenance income is assessed separately.
Act reference: FAAct Schedule 1 clause 20A FTB Rate Calculator - Annualised amount of maintenance income, Schedule 1 clause 24 Apportionment of capitalised maintenance income
Where an individual is entitled to receive maintenance in respect of only one child and that child dies the maintenance liability and therefore the relevant period ends when the child dies. Similarly, if there is an entitlement to maintenance in respect of only one child and that child leaves the care of the individual, the relevant period would end when the child left care.
However, if there is an entitlement to maintenance from one payer in respect of more than one child and one of the children dies, the entitlement to maintenance continues for the other child/ren and the relevant period continues after the death of the child. Similarly, if there is an entitlement to maintenance in respect of more than one child and one of the children leaves the care of the individual, the entitlement to maintenance continues for the other child/ren, and the relevant period continues after the child left care.
Example: Joanne has 2 children from a previous relationship and receives maintenance for both children. She claims FTB for the children from 1 July 2010 and has a child support assessment for the 2010-11 year. One of the children dies on 6 August 2010. As Joanne continues to receive maintenance for the other child, the relevant period would not end until 30 June 2011.
The relevant period applies in relation to the entitlement to receive maintenance from each payer for the relevant FTB child or children (1.1.M.23). Therefore, if an individual has children from more than one previous relationship, there will be a separate relevant period for each payer.
Example: Kylie has 2 children from 2 previous relationships. Kylie claimed FTB instalments from 1 July. On 3 September Kylie reconciled with Samantha, the other parent of her youngest child. Ben, the other parent of her oldest child died in an accident on 1 May the following calendar year. There are 2 relevant periods in that financial year for Kylie's entitlement to maintenance. These are for the period from 1 July to 2 September for the entitlement from Samantha, and for the period 1 July to 30 April for the entitlement from Ben.
The relevant period generally begins at the start of the income (financial) year. However, if an event occurs after the start of the income (financial) year that creates an entitlement to maintenance, such as a separation, the relevant period starts from whichever is the earlier of when:
The relevant period relates to the assessed entitlement to maintenance, not the amount received. For example, if a payer has a nil assessment from the CSA, the relevant period commences from the date of the assessment.
Act reference: FAAct Schedule 1 clause 20A(3) FTB Rate Calculator - Commencement of relevant period
The relevant period generally finishes at the end of the income (financial) year unless, before the end of that year:
Note: If arrears of maintenance are received after the maintenance entitlement ceases (after the end of the relevant period) the arrears do not affect payment of FTB.
Act reference: FAAct Schedule 1 clause 20A(6) FTB Rate Calculator - End of relevant period
The number of days in a relevant period is not reduced by a gap between a period of voluntary maintenance and a period where a maintenance entitlement under a formal liability exists.
Example: John has paid Marie $400 voluntary maintenance in a period of 60 days followed by a gap of 40 days where no maintenance income is received and no maintenance liability exists. He then pays $600 maintenance income for a liability of 120 days.
The annualised maintenance income for the total of 220 days is:
(365 ÷ 220) X $1,000 = $1,659.09
The effect of this is to assess $1,659.09 over 220 days, rather than over 180 days which is:
(365 ÷ 180) X $1,000= $2,027.77 over 180 days.
Last reviewed: 16 May 2011