Volume 4 Edition 9 Newsletter
Online at Permalink: http://www.financialcareservices.com.au/newsletters/vol-4-ed-9/
FINANCIAL CARE SERVICES Independent aged care, lifestyle and financial advice for seniors
Volume 4 Edition 9– 29 September 2014
Spring is here with the September Centrelink indexation increases. Next comes summer but before that the Victorian State elections.
Updating your enrollment at the Australian Electoral Commission
If you have changed your residence in the last year now could be a good time to update your enrollment ready for the Victorian State Election.
Maybe you just moved into the retirement village or serviced apartments in the same electorate as your previous home. Just a little change is still a change so you need to update your enrollment.
You can change your details online if you have your Drivers licence or Passport number ready.
Paper forms are at the Post Office if you need another elector as a witness .
If Pa has moved into the aged care facility because of his dementia could he still vote?
If Pa’s name is on the electoral roll then he is expected to vote. Once his dementia becomes so severe that he no longer understands what voting and elections are all about then his name could be removed from the list.
To ensure that names are not removed without proper cause the Australian Electoral Commission requires that a Medical Certificate be submitted.
The form for having a name removed from the Electoral rolls is titled Objection claim that an elector should not be enrolled.
You can download the form, fill in the personal details sections and then ask the medical practitioner to complete the medical certificate section when she visits the aged care home.
Then send the completed form to the AEC Divisional Office for the electorate that your family member was enrolled in. Find my Electorate helps with this part.
Read more about “What to do when a family member no longer understands about voting and elections”.
If granny has died since the last election do we need to contact the Australian Electoral Commission?
If granny died in Australia then the State registry of Deaths would inform the Australian Electoral Commission and have granny’s name removed from the electoral roll.
But if granny died outside of Australia then you could use the Objection claim that an elector should not be enrolled Form to advise the AEC of her death.
Read more about removing names from the electoral roll
Centrelink Pension Indexation Increase 20 September 2014
Centrelink Disability Pensions and Age Pensions increased effective 20 September 2014.
The new maximum total payment for a Single Pensioner is $854.30 per fortnight, that is, $22,212 for a full year.
Each member of a couple could get a maximum of $644.00 per fortnight, that is, total Age Pension payments of $33,488 for a couple for the full year.
The Income Test for the Age Pension cuts the Pension rate by 50 cents for each additional dollar of income over the Income Test Allowance.
Currently a Single Age Pensioner could have other income at Centrelink of $1,711.40 per fortnight, $44,400 per year and remain entitled to one dollar per fortnight of Age Pension plus the Pensioner Concession Card.
For a Couple living together, the last one dollar per fortnight of Age Pension and the Pensioner Concession Card are lost once the combined ‘income at Centrelink’ exceeds $2,622 per fortnight, $68,100 per year.
Read more about the new rates of DVA and Centrelink Pensions together with the Asset Test and Income Test cut-off levels
Financial Care Services offers Short Consultations to help you check your financial position against the means tests for an Age Pension or DSP.
If you think that you might be eligible for a part Pension you can call Christine on 03 9808 0338 to arrange a Short Consultation, 45 minutes in person or by telephone and/or email to discuss your potential Age Pension position. Please ask for a special ‘short consultation’ when you book your appointment.
Christine at Financial Care Services also engages with clients approaching retirement to plan their retirement finances. Call Christine on 03 9808 0338 to book an appointment to discuss your long term planning for when you no longer earn an income from work.
Aged Care Fee scales indexation increase
The Basic daily fee for Commonwealth regulated aged care increased on 20 September 2014 to $47.15, that is, 85% of the increased rate of Age Pension for a Single person.
The Maximum Accommodation Supplement for residential aged care increased to $53.04 per day.
The various changeover points for the calculation of the Means Tested Amount for aged care fees also increased. The new changeover amounts still ensure that if an aged care resident owns her former home then her Means Tested Amount is sufficient to exclude her from receiving any Accommodation Supplement. Thus the Commonwealth will not subside the accommodation costs of a resident who owns her former home unless the home is occupied by a ‘protected person’.
An aged care resident who entered permanent residential care after June 2014, must pay her full Accommodation costs if she owns her former home. The former home is no longer exempt after a ‘protected person’ moves out. This rule is different from the pre-July 2014 rules that set the Accommodation Charge, Bond or Supported status on entry, without a review provision.
You cannot have the agreed Accommodation Room Price reduced when the spouse also moves on and the former home becomes vacant. The resident with a now vacant former home must pay the full cost of her aged care accommodation based on the Accommodation Room Price as shown in her Resident Agreement.
The new July 2014 system of aged care fees are more complex and with more components subject to indexation.
Seek specialist financial advice and information about aged care costs before you negotiate aged care accommodation. Resident Agreements cannot be re-negotiated later when you realize the full extent of the costs.
A consultation before placing a loved one into permanent care could clarify the costs and check that the place is affordable before permanent entry is confirmed.
Call Financial Care Services on 9808 0338 to book a consultation before you finalize an aged care placement. Consultations can usually be arranged at short notice.
Help is available. Financial Care Services offers consultation with families to Illustrate the financial implications of their choices of aged care placements.
Call Christine on 03 9808 0338 to book an appointment to discuss your aged care financing
Financial Care Services Pty Ltd
Independent aged care, lifestyle and financial advice for seniors in Melbourne, Victoria, Australia
Australian Financial Services Licence Number
299570 (check this at www.search.asic.gov.au/fsr/flb.html)
Authorised Representative Number
252529 (check this at www.search.asic.gov.au/fsr/far.html)
Telephone – call +61 3 9808 0338
Email – contact firstname.lastname@example.org
Address – mail or meet at 172 Warrigal Road, Camberwell Victoria 3124
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Disclaimer: The information contained in this newsletter is of a general nature only and does not constitute “financial advice”. You should obtain your own personal financial advice before investing any money or moving in to any retirement village, lifestyle community or aged care facility. Financial Care Services is licensed to provide financial advice to individual clients based on their personal situations.
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