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Health Insurance Rebate Frequently Asked Questions

Who is eligible for the Federal Government Rebate on Private Health Insurance?
How much is the rebate worth?
What if the cost of my private health insurance increases if I change to a higher cover?
How do I get the rebate?
If I don't pay tax (e.g. a pensioner or student) am I still eligible for the Federal Government Rebate on Private Health Insurance?
Is the Federal Government Rebate on Private Health Insurance means tested?
Why not just make premiums tax deductible?
Where can I get more information about the Rebate?

Important note: The information on this page has been sourced from Health Funds, the Department of Health and Ageing and the Australian Taxation Office (ATO) and is subject to change. While we take great care to provide accurate and detailed advice to clients, the following information should be used as a general guide only.

Who is eligible for the Federal Government Rebate on Private Health Insurance?

Everyone who currently holds or takes out health cover, regardless of income or policy type is eligible for the Federal Government Rebate on Private Health Insurance providing all people covered by the membership are eligible to claim Medicare benefits. Anyone who joins a registered health fund will automatically be entitled to receive the rebate.

How much is the rebate worth?

From 1 April 2005, legislation took effect that enhances the amount offered under the Federal Government Rebate for older Australians. In effect, the value of the rebate is now age dependent.

Eligible individuals up to the age of 64 years are entitled to a 30% rebate on the total cost of their Private Health Insurance premiums. For example a family paying $2,000 a year for their private health insurance will get a rebate of $600. Someone paying $2,500 will receive $750 back. A $1,000 premium will be cut by $300, and a $500 premium will be cut by $150.

The Private Health Insurance Rebate for a person aged 65 – 69 years is 35%, and the rebate for a person aged 70 years and over is 40%.

What if the cost of my private health insurance increases if I change to a higher cover?

The rebate value is percentage based and therefore will keep pace with any cost increases.

How do I get the rebate?

There are 3 ways to get the Federal Government Rebate on Private Health Insurance. You can:

  • ask your Health Fund to provide it as a premium discount (by completing the rebate section of your application form) reducing your upfront costs.

  • claim it back on your tax (you will receive a statement from your Health Fund in June/July of each year to assist with your tax return).

  • receive a direct payment from the Government through your local Medicare office.


These three methods apply regardless of whether you pay your premiums monthly, yearly, in instalments or in advance.

If I don't pay tax (e.g. a pensioner or student) am I still eligible for the Federal Government Rebate on Private Health Insurance?

Yes. The Federal Government Rebate is not just for tax payers. It's for everyone who pays for private health insurance. If you don't pay tax - or only have a small taxable income - you can still get the rebate as a premium discount from your health fund, as a direct payment from the Government or as a refundable tax rebate.

Is the Federal Government Rebate on Private Health Insurance means tested?

No. It does not matter how much you earn or the level of your family income; if you have private health insurance with a registered health fund, you can claim the Federal Government rebate.

Why not just make premiums tax deductible?

Under the new tax system, the Federal Government Rebate on Private Health Insurance is as, if not more, generous than full income tax deductibility on premiums for around 80 per cent of people. Just making the rebate available as a tax deduction would discriminate against people who do not pay tax or have only a small taxable income.

Where can I get more information about the Rebate?

More information is available by calling HICA on 1300 732 757, the Department of Health and Ageing on 1800 020 103 or from all registered private health funds and Medicare offices.