thread: what do I need to know about payments we might get?

  1. #1
    Registered User

    Jul 2008

    what do I need to know about payments we might get?

    I am confused about all the payments we might or might be able to access when the baby is born. Also about the different things that we have to register baby for in order to access.

    - Baby bonus
    - Medicare
    - any other centrelink payments?
    - family tax stuff?
    - what else am I not even aware of?

    Is there some centralised system for us to know what we have to apply for? I'd hate to fall through the cracks because I didn't know about something or I forgot some form or other.

    Will the hospital give us the forms we need? Do we need to visit medicare, centrelink, anywhere else?

    Do some things come out in the wash when we do our tax return?

    I know we'll be elgible for the baby bonus, but since DH's income is erratic (freelance work), what kind of documentation will we need to supply to get the payments?

    It's so confusing! Any advice would be welcome.

  2. #2
    Registered User

    Sep 2008
    In a cloud of madness.

    rent assistance????

    You'll get heaps of paperwork in hospital.
    I just rang FAO to find out what we'd be eligiable for and what paperwork we need.

  3. #3
    Registered User

    Oct 2008
    Canning Vale, Perth

    Hospital will give you forms to do the following
    register the babys birth
    add them to your medicare card
    any centrelink/family assistance payment forms you want to apply for e.g. baby bonus, family tax benefits a and b, parenting payment, rent assistance etc

    by freelance i assume he is a sole trader with his own ABN? therefore they will prob want his last financial notice of assessment/BAS statements (to prove his income/expenses), and all his and ur usual ID, bank statements blah blah...
    can i suggest if his pay is erratic your better off applying for family tax benefits at the end of financial yr, rather than opting for the fortnightly payments, cause u may find after your partner does his tax he may have earnt more than you assumed and you will have to pay centrelink back (cause how much family tax benefits u get depends on your combined incomes)

  4. #4
    Registered User

    Jul 2008

    Thanks both, it's good to know the hospital will have the forms.

    Yes, DH runs a small business for his work, has the ABN etc. I get confused by all the details of how all that works, but he knows the mechanics by now, I think (only been doing this for a few months). I think we can estimate his income nearly enough not to go much over or under, in which case, in my opinion, the money is better off sitting in our mortgage for the duration and we might have to pay some of it back.

    Do the tax office or centrelink charge interest or fines if we are overpaid by accident, we notify them ASAP and we pay it back immediately?

    DH has actually earned a lot more in the early part of the year than we expect him to in the latter part of the year (partly because he'll be working less for a couple of months when baby comes, partly because some people paid him a large amount of money that he earned last year really late, so it has come in this year). Will they want to estimate our income for the coming tax year based on the recent few months? In which case they are likely to overestimate anyway.

  5. #5
    Registered User

    Dec 2006
    In my own private paradise

    what you are entitled to is heavily dependent on your combined incomes.

    - baby bonus - have to earn less than 75k in the six months immediately after the baby is born
    - ftb a - income limits apply - under approx 42k you get max rate - this then applies on a sliding scale until it hits a basic level, sits there for a while, and then reduces again until you get nothing. this is based on BOTH your incomes for the FULL financial year combined, and needs to be estimated
    - ftb b - same as ftba except that it is based on the LOWER income earner for the FULL financial year (as well as age of youngest child - but being new born, you'll be eligible for the higer amount for an under 5 year old). there is no "basic" level of ftbb - it just slides down until you get nothing.
    - rent assistance - based on income (similar to ftba - have to be getting more than the basic amount of FTBA and is done on a sliding scale) and the amount of rent you pay.

    these are applied for at the same time. you'll need to provide the income estimates when applying for baby bonus, and decide if you want to claim ftb at the same time. for rent assistance, you'll need to fill in a rent certificate (outlines how many people in the house etc) and provide a current lease agreement or have your landlord sign the form.
    you'll have to provide the paperwork from the hospital to claim these payments - it is essentially an "interim" birth certificate and application form for payments, that the doctor or middy signs to confirm baby was born and when. you'll have to either go on the net or make a call (up to half hour for this) to provide information as well as the paper form. if both parts are not done, you won't get payment and will have to reapply. if there is more info required, they'll tell you at the time of the call (or you'll be prompted when doing it online)

    Low Income Card - automatically issued if you receive the full amount of FTBA

    Medicare - baby will be added to your card with the FAO forms.

    Medicare Safety Net - you need to apply direct to Medicare for this one - simply having you all on the same card doesn't register you for the safety net

    now, they are the basics - if you're a low income family, you MIGHT qualify for other payments - these vary depending on your income at the time. the cut off for parenting payment partnered is currently about 1400 (before tax is deducted) per fortnight combined (guesstimating here) - given your partner is freelance and assuming he is self employed, if he has been running the business for more than a full financial year, his latest tax return can be used to calculate his income for parenting payment purposes. if your incomes have changed drastically in either direction (up or down) you would have to notify at the time, and provide profit and loss statements. it''s rather difficult, but if you DO fall under that limit, you can apply. there would be more information required if that were the case. again, you do it on the phone, and the person you're speaking to will prompt you for what additional information is required.

    essentially, you can discuss it all at the time you ring up to apply for the baby bonus - make sure someone is there to "help" with baby, or it has just gone down for a sleep cos, if you end up applying for parenting payment as well as FTB/baby bonus, well, it CAN take ages. it really depends on your own circumstances (it takes longer if you've lived overseas for any period of time, you were born outside Au etc)

  6. #6
    Registered User

    Oct 2007
    Middle Victoria

    Can we get this thread stickied?


  7. #7
    Registered User

    Apr 2008

    BG- You are amazing! You are always helping people with this sort of stuff.

    I just wanted to add, make sure you check that the midwives/doctor puts the correct D.O.B on the forms. I went to lodge mine this week and the lady at family assistance office pointed out that the midwife had put that my baby was born 2003 (making my newborn 6years old)!! Such a little mistake but a big stuff around now for me.

  8. #8
    Registered User

    Dec 2006
    In my own private paradise

    Kate - i'm actually waiting on feedback from mods as to whether we can create a closed sticky with lots of info in it that can be referred to - rather than an open thread where things can get lost. just waiting to hear back. if it gets the green light, i'll get a thread together asking for what people want to know (basic info wise) and include what i can

  9. #9
    Registered User

    Jul 2008

    Thanks so much for all that information, Briggsy's Girl, that's really useful.

    I can see I'll have to spend a little time next week, once I am on leave, sorting out the information we'll need to have on hand to send to Centrelink once baby arrives. It's good to know beforehand that I'll need to do it.