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Are You Entitled to the School Kids Bonus?

School_kids_bonus_tip

Last week a friend of mine explained how she’d claimed the School Kids Bonus for her children this month that she didn’t even realise she was entitled to.  Not only that, but Centrelink have back paid her for last year that she was also entitled to.

But I’ll let her tell you…the chances are, if you have a child starting this year (or even last year) you may be entitled too.

I have interesting information for you.

I feel like Charlie (of chocolate factory fame), and I’m waving my golden ticket like a woman possessed!

I have three children, two in primary school & one about to commence high school. Now, the tween daughter (12, going on 25) is most excited about this high school caper. She’s ranting and raving about every-bloody-thing and how wonderful it will all be. I, on the other hand, am verging on rocking in the corner in the fetal position. That sh*t is expensive! This is a public high school but by the time I fork out for fees, books, the requisite iPad, associated cost of the school loading required apps, uniforms (gone are the days of the Kmart polo), I’m going to be up for a packet!

Then there’s the two boys in primary school. While a lot cheaper than high school, still takes a chunk out of the hip pocket.

Then I saw all the hoohah in the media regarding the School Kids Bonus. I assumed I would not be entitled because I’m generally not entitled to benefits.

HOWEVER! $422 turned up in my account (I noticed because it’s generally empty), it came from the Family Assistance Office. I immediately thought it was a mistake & was concerned I’d owe them money. So I rang.

And rang.

And rang.

I (finally) got through to a recording telling me there were longer than usual wait times and I could record my details and request a call back. As I was at work I figured I’d have a go at this, I didn’t actually think I’d receive a call. I lack patience, it’s not a virtue of mine so by this time I wanted to find a way to reach down the phone and choke the virtual woman that kept saying ‘sorry, I didn’t get that’.

Low and behold, on the very same day, I had a call from a bloke called Daniel. Now Daniel is the most polite, customer focused dude that God ever shoveled guts into. I feel like all call centers should have a photo of Daniel, possibly wearing a halo & potentially strumming a harp, for all their staff to look up to and aspire to be.

Daniel, (ever so politely, with well placed questions and giggles) looked up my file and the situation. Turns out at some point they knew I had two children in primary school and…. Wait for it…. I was entitled to this! So…. Waiting again, I’m building suspense…. They had to BACK PAY me for 2014 and the payment for 2015! Back to school just got a whole lot easier!

Insert happy dance and… If I was younger and hadn’t banged out three kids – possibly a cart wheel.

I mentioned this to a few girlfriends (and by mentioned I mean – ranted like a gleeful crazy woman), turns out they were in the same boat! Luckily one of the aforementioned girlfriends is a media chick, hence why I’m able to share this with you.

It’s well worth the call ladies, I suggest you ask for Daniel.

Article supplied by Lauren Batson

I followed Lauren’s advice, and sure enough have been back paid for last year and will receive this year’s entitlement also.

So, if you haven’t informed Centreline that your child has started or is starting school, it is a good idea to call. Apparently, unless you tell them, they don’t know!

True…getting to speak to an actual real live person isn’t the easiest, but it might just be worth your while (if your household income is less that $100,000 a year.

And just think how much those extra dollars will help with the cost of the school uniforms, books, fees, etc.

Jolene

Jolene

Jolene enjoys writing, sharing and connecting with other like-minded women online – it also gives her the perfect excuse to ignore Mount-Washmore until it threatens to bury her family in an avalanche of Skylander T-shirts and Frozen Pyjama pants. (No one ever knows where the matching top is!) Likes: Reading, cooking, sketching, dancing (preferably with a Sav Blanc in one hand), social media, and sitting down on a toilet seat that one of her children hasn’t dripped, splashed or sprayed on. Dislikes: Writing pretentious crap about herself in online bio’s and refereeing arguments amongst her offspring.

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