August 17, 2013
Farming fathers are being encouraged to tap into two weeks of paid parental leave under the Federal Government’s “Dad & Partner Pay” scheme. The Federal Department of Housing has confirmed farmers are as eligible as any other business owner or worker to receive the payments ($606 per week before tax – the National Minimum Wage). “As a new dad myself, getting a little financial support to spend more time with my baby daughter in her first year of life is a great thing,” VFF vice-president David Jochinke said. “It doesn’t mean you have to stop work on the farm. You can still look after your farm. It just means you can use the money to get some help while you spend more time with your child. “It also means you can give your partner a break.” The new entitlement under the Australian Government’s Paid Parental Leave scheme provides two weeks of government–‐funded pay at the rate of the National Minimum Wage to eligible working dads and partners, including adoptive parents and same–‐sex partners, whose child is born or adopted from 1 January 2013. Eligible dads or partners must: • be caring for a child born or adopted from 1 January 2013 • be an Australian resident • have worked for at least 10 of the 13 months prior to the start date of their Dad and Partner Pay period • have worked for at least 330 hours in that 10 month period (just over one day a week), with no more than an eight week gap between two consecutive working days • have an individual adjusted taxable income of $150,000 or less in the previous financial year • not be receiving paid leave or not working during the Dad and Partner Pay Dads or partners who are self-employed may still be eligible for Dad and Partner Pay if they oversee the business or perform occasional tasks, such as arranging repairs of equipment, paying an account, or checking the delivery of an order. Self-employed dads or partners are encouraged to discuss their individual situations with their local Centrelink office for advice when applying.