Where a young person is deemed to be independent for YA and DSP purposes on the basis that it is unreasonable for them to live at home, consideration should also be given to the young person's eligibility for CrP.
Act reference: SSAct section 5(1)-'parent', section 1067A(9) Unreasonable to live at home
Policy reference: SS Guide 126.96.36.199 Assessment of Extreme Family Breakdown & Other Similar Exceptional Circumstances, 188.8.131.52 Assessment of Serious Risk 184.108.40.206 Parents Unable to Provide a Home (YA & DSP), 3.2.6 YA at the Away from Home Rate, 220.127.116.11 Qualification for CrP - Extreme Circumstances (domestic & family violence)
If a young person is receiving continuous financial or other support from parents or another person acting as a long-term guardian, they CANNOT be considered independent under this category.
'Continuous' support is not tied to any specific period of time, nor to a specified amount or type of support and may be direct or indirect, financial or otherwise. Continuous support must be regular and/or stable support that enables the young person to have a reasonable expectation that it will be received. Consideration should be given to the nature and intention of the support, that is, whether it is continuous rather than emergency in nature and intent, and whether it shows on-going concern for the young person.
Example: Continuous support may include regular payments, which may include, but are not limited to payments for school fees, regular provision of food, meals and subsidised accommodation.
Where an offer is made to provide financial or other support to a young person by a parent or another person who has previously acted as a guardian on a long term basis but not provided continuous support, consideration should be made as to the reliability of the offer. In particular, it must be confirmed that the support will be regular and/or stable and that the young person has a reasonable expectation that it will be received, including based on having previously received such support.
However, court ordered child support of less than $50.00 per week from a parent with whom the claimant cannot live for reasons that meet the unreasonable to live at home independence criteria is not treated as continuous support.
If a young person is receiving payments in the nature of income support (other than a social security benefit) on a continuous basis from an Australian Government department or an instrumentality of a state or territory government they cannot be considered independent under this category.
In this context, income support is considered to be payments received directly or indirectly by the young person intended to meet, or to assist in meeting, their general living costs regardless of whether it is adequate for this purpose. Such payments can be considered to be continuing where they are received on a regular basis and the young person has a reasonable expectation that they will be available for a reasonable period of time.
Example: Provision of board and lodgings on a long term basis would be regarded as income support.
Support provided by an Australian Government department or an instrumentality of a state or territory government that is not regarded as continuing income support is not relevant in the assessment of independence.
Example: Emergency payments or payment made by a government department to a temporary caregiver or accommodation provider are not regarded as income support.
Young people who are considered independent under this category, are subject to ongoing provisions about 'continuous support' and receipt of other government payments, which may affect the rate of YA and DSP payable.
If a dependent full-time secondary student living at home aged less than 18 years is not benefiting from the FTB payment made to their parents on their behalf, a social worker may determine that the young person can apply for YA.
A young person in this situation is not considered to be independent, however, in making the determination that the young person's situation does not meet the 'unreasonable to live at home' provisions, the social worker may determine that the young person is not benefiting from the FTB payment being made to their parents on their behalf and that the young person can apply for YA as a dependent student to ensure they are not at risk of discontinuing full-time study while living in the parental home.
Failure to assist a young person in this situation may place them at risk of disengaging from education as a result of the parent using the FTB for purposes other than providing support to the young person while living in the parental home and studying.
Dependent full-time secondary students living at home who are aged 18 years or more may apply for, and directly receive, YA in their own right, even if their parents currently receive FTB for them. Dependent young people who remain in the parental home deemed eligible to apply for YA prior to their 18th birthday are still subject to the YA parental income and assets tests and the FAMT where appropriate.
Act reference: SSAct section 543A(2AA) Paragraph (2)(b) does not apply to a person who is aged
Last reviewed: 2 January 2013