What is the Family Tax Benefit?
The Family Tax Benefit helps eligible families with the cost of child-raising, and this payment contains two parts – Part A and Part B.
FAMILY TAX BENEFIT PART A
Family Tax Benefit Part A (FTB A) is paid for each child. The payment is income tested and the amount you receive is based on your family's individual circumstances.
You may be eligible for FTB A if you have:
- A dependent child who is 0 - 15 years old, or
- A dependent child who is 16 - 19 years old and who meets the study requirements. They must:
- Be in full-time secondary study, or
- Have an acceptable study load, or
- Have been granted an exemption by Services Australia
To receive FTB A you must also:
- Meet an income test (see below)
- Meet residency requirements
- Care for the child at least 35 per cent of the time
Your child also needs to:
- Meet immunisation requirements, by being up-to-date with their jabs, on a catch-up schedule or having a medical exemption.
- Meet Healthy Start for School requirements, if applicable.
How much Family Tax Benefit Part A can I receive?
Your FTB A payment rate is calculated according to:
- Your family's adjusted taxable income and the income test, and
- The number, and ages, of children you have.
If you share care, the percentage of time you have your children is also used to work out your payment rate.
FTB A payment is either made fortnightly or through the tax system as a lump sum payment at the end of the financial year.
The maximum amounts of FTB A you can receive per child are updated on 1 July each year. Current maximum rates are as follows:
|For each child||Per fortnight|
|0 - 12 years||$191.24|
|13 - 15 years||$248.78|
|16 - 19 years (who meets study requirements)||$248.78|
|0 - 19 years in an approved care organisation||$61.46|
The base rate for FTB Part A in 2021/2022 is $61.46 for each child per fortnight. However, the base rate isn’t the minimum rate of FTB Part A. You might get less, depending on your family’s circumstances.
As mentioned above, you must pass an income test to get FTB A and your income determines how much you’ll receive.
Currently, if your family earns $56,137 or less your payment won't be affected, and you will get the maximum rate of FTB A. This may also be the case if you or your partner receive an income support payment.
For families who earn between $56,137 and $99,864, your FTB A rate reduces by 20 cents for each dollar earned above $56,137 until it reaches the base rate of FTB A, at which point it won’t reduce further. Sometimes, there’s an annual income limit to get the base rate, and the ages and number of children you have determines this limit.
If your family’s income is over $99,864 an income test is applied to work out how much FTB A you will receive. This test reduces the rate of FTB A by 30 cents for each dollar of income over $99,864 until your payment is zero.
The government won’t pay FTB A when your family income reaches a certain level, and these income limits differ, depending on how many children you have and how old they are.
If your family’s income is close to the annual limit you might want to consider either a different payment choice or claiming as a lump sum at the end of the financial year (once you know your family’s actual income) to avoid overpayment.
Maintenance Action Test
If you or your partner have a child from a previous relationship you need to try and obtain child support to receive more than the base rate of FTB A. This is called the Maintenance Action Test and you can meet it by applying for a child support assessment.
Generally speaking, the more child support assistance you receive, the less FTB A you will get, and you can learn more about this by visiting Services Australia.
Family Tax Benefit Part A Supplement
If you get the FTB A, you might also be eligible for the FTB A Supplement, which is a once-a-year payment.
Your family’s adjusted taxable income must be $80,000 or less, and for the 2021/2022 financial year, the Supplement is up to $788.40 per eligible child. How much you get depends on your family’s income, how many days you were eligible for FTB A, how many children you care for, and if you share care.
The Supplement is paid once Services Australia balances your payments after the end of the financial year. Before they can do this, you and your partner (if you have one) need to confirm your income by:
- Lodging your tax return with the Australian Taxation Office (ATO), or
- Telling them you don’t need to do this and confirming your income online.
Once the ATO has confirmed your income details you will receive a letter telling you whether you are eligible and how much Supplement you will receive.
Other payments associated with Family Tax Benefit Part A
If you receive FTB Part A you may also be eligible for additional payments, including:
- Newborn Upfront Payment and Newborn Supplement if you have a baby or adopt a child
- Multiple Birth Allowance if you have care of triplets, quadruplets or more
- A Health Care Card if you receive the maximum rate of FTB Part A
- Rent Assistance if you receive more than the base rate of FTB Part A
FAMILY TAX BENEFIT PART B
Family Tax Benefit Part B (FTB B) gives extra help to single parents, non-parent carers, grandparent carers and families with one main income.
You may be eligible for FTB B if you:
- Are a member of a couple with one main income and care for dependent children under the age of 13, or
- Are a single parent or non-parent carer, or a grandparent carer and care for a dependent child under the age of 18 (note the child must meet study requirements if they’re 16 – 18 years old).
You also have to:
- Care for the child at least 35 per cent of the time, and
- Meet residence requirements, and
- Meet the income test for FTB B (see below)
How much Family Tax Benefit Part B can I receive?
FTB B is paid per family and the payment rate is based on your adjustable taxable income and the income test.
For parents who share caring responsibilities, the percentage of care you give is taken into account, and payment rates may change if you’re a parent returning to work.
FTB B rates are updated on 1 July each year and the maximum amount you can receive depends on the age of your youngest child. Currently, the maximum rate per family is as follows:
|Age of youngest child||Per fortnight|
|0 - 5 years||$162.54|
|5 - 18 years||$113.54|
The income test for FTB B is updated on 1 July each year.
Currently, if you’re a single parent or single carer family, you can earn up to $100,900 to receive the maximum rate of FTB B. However, you won’t be eligible if your adjusted taxable income is more than $100,900.
Single grandparent carers can get the maximum rate of FTB B if their income is $100,900 or less.
Partnered parent or carer families can only receive FTB B if the youngest child is 13 or younger, unless they are a grandparent carer, when the age rises to 18.
A two-part income test is used to work out FTB B payments for couples. If your primary (higher) earner makes more than $100,900, your family won’t be eligible for FTB B. If they earn less than $100,900, your secondary (lower) earner’s income is relevant.
Secondary earners can earn up to $5,840 each year before it affects your FTB B, when payments go down by 20 cents for each dollar earnt over $5,840.
If you’re the secondary earner and your partner earns $100,900 or less, you’ll still receive some FTB B if your income is below:
- $28,945 a year, if your youngest child is younger than five years old
- $22,557 a year, if your youngest child is five to 13 years old.
Keep in mind too, that you can’t receive FTB Part B while you’re receiving Parental Leave Pay.
Partnered grandparent carers aren’t eligible for FTB B if the primary earner makes more than $100,900. Provided they earn less, the two-part income test is the same as above, except that the age of the youngest child is five to 18 years for the $22,557 income threshold.
Family Tax Benefit Part B Supplement
If you get FTB B, you may also receive a Supplement of up to $383.25 per family at the end of the financial year, after you confirm your income and Services Australia balances your payments.
How much Supplement you’ll get depends on your family’s income, if you share care, and how many days you were eligible for FTB B.
More information about Family Tax Benefit
For more information, call the Centrelink Families Line on 136 150 (weekdays, 8am to 8pm) or visit Services Australia