Disability Support and Age Pension Increases September 2017

Disability Support and Age Pension Increases September 2017 by Christine Hopper The Commonwealth has granted Centrelink Disability Support and Age Pension increases September 2017. DVA Pension and Income Support Supplement also increase from 20 September 2017. The full rates of income support Pension benefits increased by 0.7%. The Pension related daily care fees for Commonwealth regulated Read more about Disability Support and Age Pension Increases September 2017[…]

Age Pension means test allowance increase July 2017

Age Pension means test allowance increase July 2017 by Christine Hopper Age Pension means test allowance increase July 2017 The Pension Allowances are the starting points for the Income Test and Assets Test that can reduce the amount of DSP or Age Pension actually payable. Pension Allowance amounts increased slightly on 1 July 2017. This means Read more about Age Pension means test allowance increase July 2017[…]

Retirement village entry independent financial advice

Retirement village entry independent financial advice by Christine Hopper Why retirement village entry independent financial advice Wise seniors buy retirement village entry independent financial advice as part of their consideration of moving into a retirement lifestyle community village. Buying into a retirement lifestyle community village involves buying the right to occupy a residence and participate Read more about Retirement village entry independent financial advice[…]

Granny flat independent financial advice

Granny flat independent financial advice   by Christine Hopper A granny flat arrangement is an option for those who promised Mum that they would never put her into an old people’s home. But now that she is frail and confused she cannot stay on her own. Having Mum come to live with you long term Read more about Granny flat independent financial advice[…]

Age Pension Assessable Assets

Claiming Blind Pension

Claiming Blind Pension   by Christine Hopper Claiming the Blind Pension involves proving both that you are ‘blind’ and that you are an Australian resident eligible for Centrelink Income Support Benefits. The advantage of claiming the Blind Pension is that no financial means testing applies to the  Blind Pension. The value of your assets and Read more about Claiming Blind Pension[…]

Aged care daily care fee means tested amount

Aged care daily care fee means tested amount by Christine Hopper Aged care daily care fee means tested amount applies from July 2014 From July 2014, a new entrant to residential aged care is charged a Daily Care Fee based on her Means Tested Amount. The July 2014 Aged care daily care fee Means Tested Amount Read more about Aged care daily care fee means tested amount[…]

Financial year end gifting

Financial year end gifting By Christine Hopper Gifting can be a pleasure for both the donor and the gift recipient. Gifts generally reduce the asset base of the donor. Some gifts also reduce the ‘assets’ of a Centrelink or DVA Pensioner. The ATO allows for gifts to some charitable causes to be deducted from your Read more about Financial year end gifting[…]

Age Pensioners permanently departing Australia

Age Pensioners permanently departing Australia

Age Pensioners permanently departing Australia   by Christine Hopper Age Pensioners permanently departing Australia do not all continue to receive their pensions.  Some Age Pensions are cancelled and others are reduced after six months absence from Australia. Remember that Age Pensions are provided to Australian residents who are in constrained financial circumstances. You must be Read more about Age Pensioners permanently departing Australia[…]

Aged Care Asset Assessment Home Exemption

Aged Care Asset Assessment Home Exemption   by Christine Hopper Multi-generational households often ask if the Aged Care Asset Assessment has a home exemption. Families may be aware that the amount of Accommodation Bond, or Accommodation Charge, required of a permanent resident of Commonwealth regulated aged care facility depends on the amount of the new Read more about Aged Care Asset Assessment Home Exemption[…]

Centrelink Pensioners Personal Debt

Centrelink Pensioners Personal Debt By Christine Hopper At Centrelink, your personal debt is not deducted from your financial assets for determining your means tested income support benefits. For Centrelink Age Pensioners personal debt is ignored for the Asset Test. The deemed financial income for the Income Test is based on the financial assets that you Read more about Centrelink Pensioners Personal Debt[…]

Age Pensioners permanently departing Australia

Centrelink Benefits for Seniors Absent from Australia

Centrelink Benefits for Seniors Absent from Australia   by Christine Hopper Centrelink administers the Social Security benefit arrangements for Australian residents in constrained financial circumstances. Centrelink benefits continue for seniors absent from Australia temporarily but with some exceptions. Therefore you need to check your Centrelink entitlements as part of your travel plans. If you are Read more about Centrelink Benefits for Seniors Absent from Australia[…]

Centrelink early retirement benefits

If I retire now could I get any Centrelink early retirement benefits? by Christine Hopper Your eligibility for Centrelink early retirement benefits depends on your age, your personal circumstances and your financial resources and other assets. Remember Centrelink administers the Social Security Act which is about providing support to long term Australian residents in constrained Read more about Centrelink early retirement benefits[…]

Centrelink Gifting

Centrelink Gifting by Christine Hopper At Centrelink gifting is transferring assets to another person or entity for less than the market value. Centrelink expects its Age Pensioner and DSP customers to report any substantial gifts of money or assets. What is a gift at Centrelink? The simple example of Centrelink gifting is the fifty dollar Read more about Centrelink Gifting[…]

Age Pension as an Australian Resident

Age Pension as an Australian Resident by Christine Hopper Claiming an Age Pension as an Australian resident The Australian Social Security laws provide Age Pensions for Australian residents. To be eligible for an Age Pension from Centrelink you must be an Australian resident and actually be in Australia on the day that you lodge your Read more about Age Pension as an Australian Resident[…]

Agree an additional amount of Accommodation Bond?

Agree an additional amount of Accommodation Bond? by Christine Hopper Aged care managers strongly advise entrants to agree an additional amount of Accommodation Bond Admission managers at aged care facilities frequently advise potential residents that “if you pay a higher Accommodation Bond then you will get more Age Pension and eliminate the Income Tested Fee”. Read more about Agree an additional amount of Accommodation Bond?[…]

Life Expectancy How long will I live?

Life Expectancy How long will I live? by Christine Hopper If I want to save enough for a comfortable retirement then I want to know for what period would I live in retirement. So what is my life expectancy or how long will I live?  The life expectancy number is an estimate of my future lifespan.  The Read more about Life Expectancy How long will I live?[…]

Age Pension Age Increases

Social Security Age Pension Age Increases   By Christine Hopper To qualify for the Australian Age Pension applicants must have attained their Age Pension Age.  The Age Pension Age for men has been age 65 years since the Age Pension started early last century. The Age Pension Age for women has now increased to be the same as Read more about Age Pension Age Increases[…]

Accommodation Bonds for Residential Aged Care

Accommodation Bonds for Residential Aged Care

Accommodation Bonds for Residential Aged Care By Christine Hopper New entrants to requiring ‘low care’ or ‘extra service high care’ may be asked for Accommodation Bonds for residential aged care.  The Accommodation Bonds for residential aged care are like interest free loans to the operator of the residential aged care facilities. How much is the Read more about Accommodation Bonds for Residential Aged Care[…]

Bill payments via Centrepay

Bill payments via Centrepay by Centrelink deductions

Efficient budgeting and utility bill payments via Centrepay   By Christine Hopper Centrelink income support clients are welcome to use the Centrepay bill payment system. Types of bills for payment via Centrepay The major telephone, water and electricity providers accept bill payments via Centrepay.  Public housing and most community housing groups will accept rent payments Read more about Bill payments via Centrepay by Centrelink deductions[…]

Home in Retirement

Home in Retirement

A place to call home in retirement   By Christine Hopper Many long term renters delay retiring from full time paid work.  How could I afford to continue paying my rent without a regular full-time wage?  The unspoken fear could be, “I might be without a home in retirement”. The good news is that you Read more about Home in Retirement[…]

Personal Circumstances at Centrelink or DVA

Personal Circumstances at Centrelink or DVA   by Christine Hopper The amounts of income support benefits available from Centrelink or DVA, depend on your Personal Circumstances at Centrelink or DVA.  So what are “Personal Circumstances” at Centrelink and DVA? Your Personal Circumstances at Centrelink, or DVA, is based on your relationship with the people that you Read more about Personal Circumstances at Centrelink or DVA[…]

Age Pensioner Work Bonus in Centrelink Income Test

Age Pensioner Work Bonus in Centrelink Income Test by Christine Hopper The Age Pensioner Work Bonus in the Centrelink Income Test is to encourage Age Pensioners to continue their links to the paid workforce. The advantage of the Age Pensioner Work Bonus is that the first $250 per fortnight of income from employment is not counted Read more about Age Pensioner Work Bonus in Centrelink Income Test[…]

Age Pension for only one partner in a couple

Can I get an Age Pension when I turn 65 even if my partner is much younger and/or still working? by Christine Hopper You can apply for an Age Pension when you have attained age 65 years. The Centrelink rules allow for an Age Pension for only one partner in a couple when the other partner Read more about Age Pension for only one partner in a couple[…]

Pensioner Rent Assistance

Pensioner Rent Assistance Pensioner Rent Assistance is available to Centrelink Age and Disability Support Pensioners. DVA pays Rent Assistance to eligible Service Pensioners.  DVA also pays Rent Assistance to those veteran Disability Pensioners and War Widow Pensioners who are also recipients of the Income Support Supplement. To be eligible for Pensioner Rent Assistance you must Read more about Pensioner Rent Assistance[…]

Homeowner at Centrelink and DVA

Homeowner at Centrelink and DVA By Christine Hopper Avid readers of Commonwealth Pension means testing charts notice that the Asset Test Allowances have different amounts for ‘homeowners’ and ‘non-homeowners’.  So who is a homeowner at Centrelink and DVA? Homeowner Suburban Examples Mary still owns the family home situated well inside a standard block in suburbia.  Read more about Homeowner at Centrelink and DVA[…]

Residential aged care for seniors in new relationships

The complexities of aged care accommodation costs for Couples at Centrelink who met later in life By Christine Hopper James and Jenny exchanged the family home for a modest new townhouse near their adult children.  James had only recently retired and when Jenny died suddenly. After a few years of living alone, James embarked on Read more about Residential aged care for seniors in new relationships[…]

Annuities – Income Streams

Annuities – Income Streams By Christine Hopper Long ago annuities were purchased by healthy, wealthy seniors as a means of converting lump sums into extended lifetime income streams.  These folk were paid annuities as income streams.  Annuities are now being marketed to retirees, so what is an annuity and why would I buy one? The purchase of an annuity Read more about Annuities – Income Streams[…]

Full Centrelink Pension for legally blind residents

Full Centrelink Pension for legally blind residents By Christine Hopper Centrelink pay the full Age or Disability Support Pension to residents who are ‘legally blind’.  So who is legally blind and not just vision impaired? When we hear that someone is ‘blind’ we sometimes assume that the person has no vision.  Sadly some people have Read more about Full Centrelink Pension for legally blind residents[…]

Centrelink Means Testing for the Age Pension

Centrelink Means Testing for the Age Pension By Christine Hopper As seen on the Greypath Seniors Forum http://greypath.com/node/39292 Once you have proved to Centrelink that you are old enough and have lived in Australia long enough for an Age Pension then Centrelink determine how much Age Pension you will actually be paid.  Your Age Pension Read more about Centrelink Means Testing for the Age Pension[…]

Age Pensions and Retirement Living Costs

Age Pensions and Retirement Living Costs Who is eligible for the Pension? The Commonwealth provides a basic income to Australian residents who are considered unable to work full time on account of age or disability.  The Age Pension for men aged 65 years and women aged 64 years and 6 months, and its financial equivalent: Read more about Age Pensions and Retirement Living Costs[…]