The Government offers a range of financial assistance schemes outside of the National Disability Insurance Scheme (NDIS) to support people with disability to cover the cost of living including rent or mortgage repayments, groceries, utilities, transport and other miscellaneous costs.
If you have a disability that leaves you unable to work, you may be able to receive financial assistance. This is also the case if you have a disability but are actively looking for employment. If you are caring for someone with a disability and this affects your ability to work or study there are a number of financial assistance initiatives that can make your life easier.
Disability Support Pension
The Disability Support Pension (DSP) provides financial help for people with a permanent physical, intellectual or psychosocial disability that prevents them from working. To be eligible for the DSP you must meet both non-medical and medical rules.
These include being permanently blind, you have a terminal illness with an average life expectancy of less than two years, you have an intellectual disability with an IQ of less than 70 or you get a Department of Veterans’ Affairs special rate disability pension.
Non-medical rules include your age, residency and income and assets.
General medical rules include:
Your condition will last more than 2 years
Your condition is fully diagnosed, treated and stabilised
Your have an impairment rating of 20 points or more
Your condition will stop you from working at least 15 hours a week over the next 2 years.
It is important to note that not everyone with disability or a medical condition is eligible for the DSP. If you can’t get DSP, you may be able to get other payments. You can still access services under the National Disability Insurance Scheme (NDIS) if you’re getting or claiming DSP.
To find out if you are eligible for the DSP and how you can apply visit the Department of Human Services website or call 132 717.
If you are unemployed but actively looking for work you may be able to receive the Newstart Allowance. It also supports you if you have a longer-term condition and cannot access the DSP.
This financial support is available to people who are 22 years or older but under the Aged Pension age of 65 years old, looking for paid work, earn under the income and assets test limits and prepared to meet mutual obligation requirements.
You will no longer receive payments if you stop looking for work without a good reason and you may not receive payments until you attend your first appointment with an Employment Services Provider.
To find out if you are eligible for the Newstart Allowance and how you can apply visit the Department of Human Services website or call 132 850.
Child Disability Assistance Payment
If you care for a child with a disability or serious injury under 16 years old and are paid the Carer Allowance, you will also automatically receive Childhood Disability Assistance Payment. Under this scheme, you will receive $1,000 in your bank account, annually. If you care for two children, you can expect two payments.
You will not be eligible if you only have a Carer Allowance Health Care Card.
To find out more visit the Department of Human Services website or call 132 717.
Youth Disability Supplement
If you’re under 21 years old and on a Disability Support Pension, you may be eligible for extra assistance through the Youth Disability Supplement. You may also be eligible to receive the supplement if you're under 22 and get Youth Allowance or ABSTUDY. The highest amount you can receive on the Youth Disability Supplement is $129.80 a fortnight.
You don’t need to apply for Youth Disability Supplement but you’ll need to tell the Department of Human Services if you don’t want to get it.
To find out more visit Department of Human Services website or call 132 717