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Family Tax Benefit and Rent Assistance Eligibility




Last amended: Effect of FTB Part A on rent assistance eligibility

Generally, a person is not entitled to receive rent assistance with their service pension or ISS if:

  • they or their partner are entitled to Family Tax Benefit A, and
  • the maximum Part A rate of their FTB or the FTB of their partner includes an amount of rent assistance.

However, there are some circumstances in which a person entitled to rent assistance as part of their FTB Part A can be eligible for rent assistance with their service pension or income support supplement. These circumstances are outlined below.

Payment arrangements for dual rent assistance eligibilities

The circumstances in which a person who is entitled to rent assistance with their FTB Part A is also entitled to receive rent assistance with service pension or ISS are very limited. These are where:

  • a decision has been made to pay a person rent assistance with their service pension or ISS,
  • that decision is made before a decision is made to include rent assistance in the person's or their partner's FTB Part A, and
  • the day/s in respect of which rent assistance is payable with the person's pension is earlier than the day on which the determination was made to pay rent assistance with the FTB rent assistance.

Note: In these circumstances, the rate of FTB rent assistance payable will be reduced by the amount of rent assistance which has been paid for the period with the person's (and, where relevant) the person's partner's service pension or ISS.    

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Rent Assistance is an allowance, which may be paid to a service pensioner or income support supplement (ISS) recipient to assist in meeting the cost of rental accommodation.

To receive rent assistance, a pensioner must be paying rent (other than Government rent) for accommodation in Australia, and the amount paid must exceed a certain threshold.

A service pension is an income support payment broadly equivalent to the social security age and disability support pensions. It may be paid once a veteran or partner has reached the nominated age or is incapacitated for work.

ISS is an income support payment that may be paid to eligible war widows and widowers under the VEA and persons receiving wholly dependent partners' compensation under the MRCA, and who satisfy the means tests. It is an indexed rate, increased twice-yearly in March and September in line with changes to the cost of living and/or average wages. Income Support Supplement (ISS) legislation commenced on 20 March 1995. It is a payment created to replace the ceiling rate income support age, carer, wife and disability support pensions, paid to war widows/widowers by Centrelink.



Family Tax Benefit A is a payment made by the Family Assistance Office to assist families with the cost of raising children. It replaces Minimum Family Allowance, Family Allowance, Family Tax payment Part A and Family Tax Assistance Part A.