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Low-income Working Family Allowance opens for Phase 2 Applications from today

     The Low-income Working Family Allowance (LIFA) is open for Phase 2 applications from today (June 1).

     The Secretary for Labour and Welfare, Mr Matthew Cheung Kin-chung said, "I encourage eligible families with three persons to submit their applications as soon as possible. Eligible families with four or more persons who have not yet submitted their applications in Phase 1 may still apply and the claim period will similarly be from November 2015 onwards."

     As a reminder for those families with income slightly above the upper limits for full-rate allowances, Mr Cheung added, "If their monthly income exceeds 50 per cent of the Median Monthly Domestic Household Income (MMDHI) but is not higher than 60 per cent of the MMDHI, they could apply for half-rate allowances if other eligibility criteria are met. If interested applicants have any questions, the Working Family Allowance Office (WFAO) stands ready to assist.

     "To assist interested applicants, the WFAO colleagues have been conducting briefings in all districts in the past two months. We welcome any body or organisation interested in arranging a briefing to contact the WFAO."

     Applications can be submitted by post to PO Box No. 62600 Kwun Tong Post Office (WFAO of the Working Family and Student Financial Assistance Agency (WFSFAA)) or through the Drop-in Boxes at the WFAO, Student Finance Office (of the WFSFAA), the Work Incentive Transport Subsidy Division of the Labour Department and the District Social Welfare Offices of the Social Welfare Department.

     The Scheme aims to encourage employment and self-reliance as well as ease inter-generational poverty. Under the Scheme, a family of two or more members meeting the income and asset limits may apply for a full-rate Basic Allowance ($600 per month), a full-rate Higher Allowance ($1,000 per month), a half-rate Basic Allowance ($300 per month) or a half-rate Higher Allowance ($500 per month) if the applicant meets the working hour requirements. Each eligible child may also be eligible for a full-rate Child Allowance ($800 per month) or a half-rate Child Allowance ($400 per month). For single parents, the working hour requirements will be lower.

     The first-batch applications are received in three phases. Phase 1 applications are for families with four or more persons. Applications may be submitted in May 2016. Phase 2 applications are now open (applicable to families with three persons) and may be submitted in June 2016. The claim period is from November 2015 to May 2016 (seven months).  

     Phase 3 applications are for families with two persons and may be submitted in July 2016. The claim period is from November 2015 to June 2016 (eight months). The application form and related documents are available from today at various distribution points and the LIFA website (

     For more flexibility, if applicants in Phase 1 (families with four persons or more), Phase 2 (families with three persons), and Phase 3 (families with two persons) submit their applications on or before July 31 2016, the first claim month will be standardised to be November 2015. The claim period for an application submitted on or after August 1, 2016 will be the six months preceding the month in which the application is submitted.

     There are 159 distribution outlets for application forms and related documents, including the WFAO, the Student Finance Office, the Work Incentive Transport Subsidy Division, Job Centres and Industry-based Recruitment Centres of the Labour Department, the District Social Welfare Offices, Social Security Field Units and Integrated Family Service Centres of the Social Welfare Department, and the Public Enquiry Service Centres of the Home Affairs Department.  

     Applicants are welcome to call the 24-hour LIFA hotline 2558 3000 or visit the enquiry counters of the WFAO at 9/F, 181 Hoi Bun Road, Kwun Tong. Details of the LIFA Scheme are also available at the LIFA website (

Ends/Wednesday, June 1, 2016
Issued at HKT 09:01


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