Nila Sweeney

Taxpayers with a dependent spouse under 40 with no children will no longer receive a tax offset, according to reforms announced in the Federal Budget.

The decades-old rebate reflects “a model of society and workforce participation where there was a principal breadwinner and the partner/spouse didn’t work”, says Treasurer Wayne Swan.
The measure will raise more than $220m in 2012-13.

According to Swan, in modern society both partners work.

Treasurer Wayne Swan says making 40 the cut-off age ”recognises that dependent spouses who may have been out of the workforce for many decades would find it more difficult to find jobs.”
The new rule will not apply to dependent spouses who are carers, invalids, permanently unable to work, in a remote zone, or accompanying a partner on overseas service.

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