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Defence Force Income Support Allowance (DFISA)(Ceased 2022)

Last amended 
28 February 2022

DFISA ceased 1 January 2022.  The information below is for historical and backdating assessments only.

Legislative Authority

Veterans' Entitlements Act 1986
Section 118NB (eligibility)
118NC (when payable)
Section 118ND (calculation of amount payable)

Part VIIAB (including the sections above) was revoked by the Veterans' Affairs Legislation Amendment (Exempting Disability Payments from Income Testing and Other Measures) Act 2021 which received Royal Assent 13 December 2021 with an implementation date of 1 January 2022.

Stated Current Purpose/Intent

The purpose of DFISA was to effectively exempt adjusted disability pension from the income test for income support payments paid under Social Security Law, while continuing to regard it as income for the purposes of rent assistance paid under both Social Security and Veterans' Entitlements Law.


Current Eligibility Criteria

The amount of DFISA was the difference between the person's rate of social security payment, and what the rate would be if adjusted disability pension were exempt from the assessment, but included in the calculation of any rent assistance entitlement.

DFISA was payable to people whose social security income support payment was reduced or not payable because of the impact of adjusted disability pension.

Adjusted disability pension means:

  • disability pensions paid under Parts II or IV (other than a pension that was payable under section 30 to a dependant of a deceased veteran) of the VEA;
  • dependant pension, which was a small frozen amount paid to dependants of disability pensioners, not granted since 1986;
  • temporary incapacity allowance (paid by Centrelink); and
  • permanent impairment payments and special rate disability pension paid under the MRCA.


Date of Introduction

20 September 2004


Significant Changes in Criteria or Purpose Since Introduction

Part VIIAB (including section 118NJ – regulation making power) was revoked by the Veterans’ Affairs Legislation Amendment (Exempting Disability Payments from Income Testing and Other Measures) Act 2021 receiving Royal Assent 13 December 2021, implementation date 1 January 2022.