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Grandparents who are primary carers

Information to assist grandparents who are the primary carers of their grandchildren.

Where to get financial support

Grandparents may be eligible for help from Centrelink (now part of the Commonwealth Department of Human Services) with the cost of caring for grandchildren. Some payments can be made even where a carer does not have legal responsibility for the child. Payments and allowances may include:

  • family assistance
  • health care cards
  • carer allowance
  • family tax benefits.

Getting child support

Grandparents who care for a grandchild who is under 18 years old may be eligible for child support from one or both parents. Child support may be paid if the grandparent cares for the child for 128 nights in a year. This works out to be 35% of the care or more.

To find out about whether a grandparent or other carer is eligible for child support, the person will have to apply for a child support assessment.

See Services Australia—Grandparent advisers(opens in a new window).

More information


Services Australia (formerly Department of Human Services)

The Commonwealth Department of Services Australia website has information for grandparents about the payments and benefits that they may be eligible for if they are primary carers for their grandchildren.