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Australian Government Coat of Arms

Budget | 2015-16

Budget 2015-16
Australian Government Coat of Arms, Budget 2015-16

Fairness of benefits

The Government is strengthening the integrity of our welfare system to ensure that it remains fair and sustainable

The Government is upgrading our welfare payment system, targeting assistance to those most in need, improving compliance, and ensuring that social obligations are met.

These measures will result in a net saving of around $3.5 billion over the forward estimates.

Transformation programme

We will invest an initial $60 million to kick start the Welfare Payment Infrastructure Transformation to upgrade the Department of Human Services’ (DHS) information technology to meet the demands of today’s digital world.

Welfare system integrity

The Government will return around $1.5 billion to the budget by increasing DHS capability to detect, investigate and deter suspected welfare fraud and non‑compliance.

The Government will also improve the fairness of the Higher Education Loan Programme by recovering debts from Australians living and working overseas who have received taxpayer funded loans for their education. The new arrangements will impose repayment obligations on Australians living overseas on the same terms that currently apply to residents.

We will remove double-dipping from Parental Leave Pay (PLP) from 1 July 2016. Previously individuals could receive taxpayer funded PLP in addition to any employer-provided parental leave entitlements.

Access to PLP will now be limited to individuals whose employer does not provide parental leave entitlements. In cases where individuals get less generous parental leave entitlements from their employer, the Government will top up the amount paid to be equal to the full amount available under the existing scheme.

Strengthening the integrity of the welfare system
The Government is taking action to strengthen the integrity of our welfare system in four areas: first, we are upgrading the welfare payment system; second, we are targeting assistance to those most in need; third, we are improving compliance; and fourth, we are ensuring social obligations are met.