Date amended:

Legislative Authority

Veterans' Entitlements Act 1986 (saving provisions only)
Responsibility for administration of carers pension transferred to the Department of Social Security (now Department of Human Services).
Savings and Transitional Provisions at Section 8 of Schedule 5 provide amendments relating to the transfer of carers.



  1. Carer pension and Carer allowance are administered by Department of Human Services.


Significant Changes in Criteria or Purpose Since Introduction


Carer pension extended to include certain relatives providing constant care to a severely handicapped veteran.


VEA amended to extend eligibility to any carer who provides the required level of care and attention.

Eligibility for carer pension extended to non-relatives from 1 November 1989.


VEA amended to allow a carer to live either in the home of the veteran or adjacent to it.


Respite period increased from 28 to 42 days within a calendar year before eligibility for carer service pension was lost.

Carers allowed to travel overseas during a period when they temporarily cease to provide care.

Carers were able to undertake training, education or employment for up to 10 hours per week.

Carers were permitted to access earnings credit arrangements.

Lump sum bereavement payments were extended to carers.


Introduction of requirement for certain carer service pensioners to test their eligibility for an overseas pension.


Eligibility extended to carers of veterans who do not receive service pension, but who satisfy the basic family payment income and assets test.

Requirement for the carer to live in the same home as, or in a home adjacent to, the veteran requiring care was removed.

Payment of carer service pension continued for up to 14 weeks when the person requiring care is admitted to an institution permanently.

Lump sum advance of service pension was introduced.


Carers were transferred to carer pension paid by the Department of Social Security (now Department of Human Services) on 11 December 1997.

2015Income test change: from 1 January 2015, income deeming applies to asset-tested income streams (long term) that are account‑based.  Products held on, and those in receipt of income support since, 31 December 2014 are grandfathered from the change.

From 1 July 2019, new income streams category Asset-tested Lifetime, for which means test includes:

  • 60% of income and asset from 'assessment day'; and
  • 30% of asset from 'threshold day'.