Centrelink entitlements on Oz return

What are Ray’s entitlements on returning to Australia?

Centrelink entitlements on Oz return

After several years based overseas, YOURLifeChoices member Ray is considering returning to Australia but would like to know to what he will be entitled.

Q. Ray
I am Australian citizen working and living in Vietnam, but will return shortly to Australia. I’m married to a Vietnamese woman and we have four-year old son who is an Australian citizen. I will be entitled to an Age Pension as I spent the major part of my life in Australia and am prepared to spend at least two years there once I start receiving pension. My wife is 34 years old and will migrate on a permanent visa seeking citizenship after two years. We know my wife cannot receive any payments for herself, but am I considered partnered or not for pension purposes? What are our likely entitlements?

A. Firstly, your wife will need to hold permanent residency status for four years and meet further residency requirements before she can apply to become an Australian citizen. You may wish to refer to the Department of Immigration website to confirm her eligibility. 

You will be assessed as part of a couple for the purpose of calculating your Age Pension payments. You can view the current income and asset limits by clicking the links below.

Income limits 

Asset limits 

In regards to how much you are paid, this depends on whether you qualify for a full or part Age Pension based on your income and assets. You can view the current payment rates by reading Pension increases March 2013

You may also be entitled to rent assistance if you are not returning to your own home and are not renting from a government authority. You can find out more about rent assistance by visiting the Department of Human Services website.

As you have a child, you may be entitled to Family Tax Benefit Part A and Family Tax Benefit Part B. The rates at which this is paid is based on several factors, but you can find out more by visiting HumanServices.gov.au

You can also use the online estimators to give you a guide of how much Age Pension and Family Assistance payments you will receive – you can find these at HumanServices.gov.au.

How much you actually receive will be based on your individual circumstances and only Centrelink can fully advise you of this. I appreciate that you have not found the information provided useful to date, but you may wish to contact Centrelink again before you make the move. You can find details on international contact numbers here.


    To make a comment, please register or login
    10th Jun 2013
    So nice of you Ray, to be " prepared to spend at least two years there once I start receiving pension." to qualify for an Australian pension.

    Sounds as if you are going to scuttle back to Vietnam with an Ozzie pension just as soon as possible.

    Perhaps you would like to emigrate there permanently, & ask for a pension there.
    10th Jun 2013
    I think Ray said he lived and worked in australia most of his life and paid taxes here. To qualify for the pension you need to have worked here for 25 years.
    (I think) Lots of people go overseas to live when they retire. I think it's allowed as they don't get the supplements ( so the country makes a big saving there as well as not having to pay medical expenses ) just the pension that they earned by working here

    I am not sure if they have a pension there but if they do I am sure it's like other countries and you would have to earn it by working there during your working life So I guess he wouldn't be entitled to anything there
    10th Jun 2013
    hasbeen So nice to see a bitchy comment like that. Surely if the person is an Australian Citizen and was born here he is entitled to all and everything.

    His alternative is to come back by BOAT then they will give him everything and more!!!!!
    His Son is and Australian Citizen so he would qualify for Medicare etc so why not the wife??? Seems to me that there is one rule for some and another for others. Perhaps his wife should be good at netball or swimming then they would give her citizenship right away. Oh and don't say it cannot be done because I have been given citizenship because I was working for foreign affairs.
    10th Jun 2013
    You miss my point entirely lowflyer.

    As far as I'm concerned he is entitled to come back, bring his wife & child, & access his pension, reduced by any income his young wife may earn, as are all of us.

    His child should be entitled to what ever benefits other children of Ozzie parents are entitled, no question.

    However there is supposed to be a time limit that any pensioner remains eligible for a pension, if they chose to leave the country. Pensions should not be milked by folks who chose to live elsewhere, for what ever reason.
    5th Sep 2013
    Coming in a bit late here but Hasbeen has a few issues. I have been here for more than 40 years and paying my tax's like a good citizen. When I retire it will be overseas but I may miss out due to smart accounting by the Government. This in effect prevents many Australians getting a pension just because they choose to LIVE somewhere else.
    No one is missing your Point Hasbeen and having an issue with someone who chooses to live overseas especially if they are from Vietnam may be construed as rather mean of you. Leave your bitching to the issue of boat people and queue jumpers who are the real ones bleeding/milking this country dry. Also find out more about someone and their circumstances before pushing your opinion. Just because you have one does not make you right. Just a Hasbeen.
    2nd Jun 2015
    Im Terrence Paul Catlin born in Australia with both parents are Australian , i leave my work and my country since April 8,2005 as far as i can remember and stay here in the Philippines up to the present ... i plan to visit my country Australia to apply my age pension as i am turning 64 years old this coming 16 Oct 2015 , i am living with the woman who look after me without complaining since i arrived the Philippines until now of writing ... do you think i can have my pension and my partner to avail the carer pension ? i could not live without this woman name Elna , because i dont know how to look after my self ? i could not remember things where i put it ? i dont have the control of what i am doing most of the time ... my brain is full of rabish thing that i dont like , i dont know whats going on with me ? i just want to go back to Australia and ask what they can help me .... i wish somebody can help me .... i dont know where to stay when im coming home ? i dont have my house in Sydney ....

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