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Severe disability

To be eligible to be the principal beneficiary of a special disability trust, a person must have a severe disability. A person with a severe disability is:

  • a person who has reached 16 years of age:
  • whose level of impairment would qualify the person for disability support pension from Centrelink or who is already receiving invalidity service pension or invalidity income support supplement, and
  • who has a disability that would, if the person had a sole carer, qualify the carer for carer payment or carer allowance, or
  • who is living in an institution, hostel or group home in which care is provided for people with disabilities, and for which funding is provided (wholly or partly) under an agreement between the Commonwealth and State/Territory governments, and
  • who has a disability as a result of which he or she is not working and who has no likelihood of working for a wage that is at or above the relevant minimum wage, or
  • a child under 16 years of age who is a profoundly disabled child as defined in subsection 197(1) in the Social Security Act 1991.



According to section 52ZZZW of the VEA, a special disability trust is a trust that has been established solely in order to provide for the current and future care and accommodation needs of the beneficiary who is a person with a severe disability.



A Disability Support pension is paid by Centrelink to claimants with a significant and long term inability to work and is broadly equivalent to an Invalidity service pension paid by DVA.

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.



Means carer payment under the Social Security Act 1991.

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