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Updated 22/05/2024
What changed?
Reviewed by Dr Jill Gamberg and tip added and referencing style updated.
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Fact checked
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Written by

Mel Basta

Updated 22/05/2024

What changed?

Reviewed by Dr Jill Gamberg and tip added and referencing style updated.
Our aim is to help you make better informed decisions. That’s why iSelect’s content is produced in accordance with our fact-checking and editorial guidelines.

Find out more about how we make money.

View our Privacy Policy.

Check out our range of private health funds

iSelect does not compare all providers in the market or all policies offered by our partners in your area. Not all policies or special offers are available to all customers and some may only be available over the phone or on the website. Learn more.

What is single parent Health Insurance?

In short, it’s all in the name – Health Insurance for single parents and their kids. A single parent family consists of one adult and dependant(s), including child/student dependants. 

Many health insurers offer policies designed for single parent families, which generally have lower-rate premiums compared with standard family cover, which is designed to cover two adults and their kids.  

However, the way a dependent is defined by your policy can vary between providers. For example, some providers may allow dependent children to remain on a single parent Health Insurance until the age of 30, while others waive excess for dependents under 21.

Do I need Private Health Insurance as a single parent?

Single Parents Health Insurance: get the facts

Do single parents pay more or less for Private Health Insurance?

According to the Private Health Insurance Act 2007, health insurers are able to offer single parents reductions in premiums.  

Of course, single parent policies will cost more than just a single policy because you would be adding cover for your kids. However, they’re likely to cost less than a family policy as you would be choosing cover for one adult rather than two. 

It still pays to shop around, but generally, any Health Insurance provider that does offer single parent Health Insurance provides a reduced premium for a comparable package as a two-parent family. 

What Private Health Insurance rebates are available for single parents?

The good news is that many people in Australia are eligible for a Government rebate on their Health Insurance costs, including single parents.  

The Australian Government Private Health Insurance Rebate is specifically designed to help cover some of the costs of Health Insurance, including for single parents. 

The rebate is income-tested and applies to both hospital and general treatment (Extras) cover. The rebate threshold is increased for each child after the first.

Will my single Health Insurance policy cover my child?

An adult who holds Health Insurance as a single (a singles policy) will only have cover for themselves.  

Adults who have dependents need to let their insurer know that they want to include their children on their policy. The policy will then need to be upgraded to a single parent policy, or family policy, which will cost more than a single policy.

Will my child always be covered under my policy?

Generally, all single parent policies will cover your dependent children until they turn 21. Some health funds that offer single parent cover may cover dependents until the age of 31. 

However, it’s important to note that some single parent policies that cover adult children only do so if they are still a student (meaning if your adult child is over 21 and is no longer studying, they may need to take out their own singles cover).   

Other single parent policies will allow adult dependents to remain on your cover regardless of student status for an additional premium. 

This is why it’s important to shop around given there are different options for adult children.

New legislation

In 2021, the Australian Government passed the Private Health Insurance Legislation Amendment (Age of Dependents) Bill, which changed the maximum allowable age for dependents to be covered under a single parent or family policy from 24 years of age to 31 years of age. 

Other changes in the legislation include: 

  • New terminology with ‘dependent non-student’ replacing ‘dependent child non-student’. 
  • A ‘dependent student’ is defined as from 18 to 31 years instead of from 0 to 24 years. 
  • A ‘dependent non-student’ is defined as from 18 to 31 years. 
  • A new dependent person category has been introduced, known as ‘dependent person with a disability’, who is aged 18 years or over, and who may have a partner.  

However, the following conditions remain the same: 

  • Retain the requirement to not have a partner (i.e. be married or in a de-facto relationship). 
  • Insurers are allowed to have a separately priced product subgroup for dependent non-students. 
  • An insurer can specify requirements and limitations making use of student and non-student dependents from the age of 18 years. 

Helpful Tip:

Pay attention to the level of cover you are getting and assess the health needs of your kids as well as your budget. For example, do you think your kids might need braces in the future? If this is the case, you might want to consider an Extras policy that includes Orthodontic benefits.

Dr. Jill Gamberg

GP and Lifestyle Coach

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Single Parents Health Insurance: your frequently asked questions

Does single parent Health Insurance cover pregnancy?

What doesn’t single parent Health Insurance cover?

What if I separate from my partner?

Will my child be affected by waiting periods?

How can I find suitable Health Insurance for single parents?

iSelect does not compare all health insurance providers or policies in the market. The availability of policies will change from time to time. Not all policies available from its providers are compared by iSelect and due to commercial arrangements, your stated needs and circumstances, not all policies compared by iSelect are available to all customers. Some policies and special offers are available only from iSelect’s contact centre or website. Click here to view iSelect’s range of providers