New test could benefit students

CENTRELINK is encouraging students and their families to consider their options when further changes to Youth Allowance take effect from July 1.

Centrelink general manager Hank Jongen said from July 1 a more generous parental income test (from $33,300 to $44,165) for dependent Youth Allowance and ABSTUDY customers will mean more students will become eligible for payment.

“This aligns with the income threshold for Family Tax Benefit (Part A) and means around 68,000 more young people will now get Youth Allowance or ABSTUDY, while a further 34,600 existing customers will get a higher rate.”

This month, more than 114,000 letters are being sent to Family Tax Benefit customers to explain their family may be better off financially if their child chooses Youth Allowance or ABSTUDY.

“It’s important to consider your family’s situation and the available options. If you’re unsure, please talk to us,” Mr Jongen said.

“From July 1, the criteria that determines whether you can be granted Youth Allowance or ABSTUDY as an independent will change.

“However, there will be transitional arrangements to ensure students who took a gap year in 2009 are not disadvantaged by these changes.”

Students and their families interested in finding out more about the changes can visit www.centrelink.gov.au.



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