The Australian Government has announced a change to the Parenting Payment (Single) by raising the age cut-off from 8 to 14. This means eligible carers will be able to access the payment and no longer have to transfer to the lower JobSeeker payment until their youngest dependent child turns 14. This change will take effect from 20 September 2023, subject to the passage of legislation.

The change is expected to benefit overwhelmingly single mothers, many of whom the Government acknowledges “have experienced violence from a previous partner and are at greater risk of financial hardship”.

With this change, eligible single parents currently on JobSeeker will receive an increase to payments of $176.90 per fortnight. The current base rate for Parenting Payment (Single) recipients is $922.10 per fortnight, which is 95 per cent of the Age Pension.

The change is estimated to cost the Government an additional $1.9 billion through to 2026-27.

According to the Government, mutual obligation requirements will remain in place for recipients of Parenting Payment (Single) “to encourage single parents to participate in employment, study or training, and maintain connections with the labour force so they can return to work when their children are older”.

Currently, Parenting Payment (Single) recipients will have to transfer to JobSeeker when their youngest child turns eight.


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