Centrelink – Services Australia

Centrelink, is one of the agencies (Medicare and Child Support the other two), which operates under the banner of the Department of Human Service and is responsible for assessing the eligibility for and processing payment of social security benefits.

Such benefit payments that relate to older Australians include (but are not limited to):

Age Pension – paid to those over the age of 65 as a means of retirement income support. Eligibility for the payment is subject to certain criteria, such as residency and asset and income assessment.
Newstart Allowance – paid to those who have not yet reached Age Pension eligibility age (65) but who no longer work or work limited hours.
Disability Support Pension – paid to those who cannot work due to incapacity, limited mobility or long-term illness and is subject to a medical assessment and similar eligibility criteria to the Age Pension.
Carer Payment – paid to those who provide full time, at home care for someone who is disabled, frail or requires aged care.
Carer Allowance – paid to those who provide daily care, which may be in additional to profession care, in the home to someone with a disability, medical condition or requires aged care.
Rent Assistance – paid to those in receipt of a qualifying payment and who require additional assistance to meet their accommodation rental payments.

All Centrelink payments are subject to eligibility, which can revolve around, age, residency, income and assets, medical conditions, work status and the eligibility of those who require care. For certain payment, such as the Age Pension and Newstart, you will be required to report the hours you work and income you receive each fortnight. And for all payments, you will need to advise Centrelink if you are planning to travel overseas.

Generally, payments can be applied for and managed online, through Centrelink’s online services. To use this function, you will need to have a Centrelink account and in the near future, will also require a MyGov account to access such services.

Centrelink can also provide assistance to those who find themselves in financial difficulty, by arranging emergency or advance payments. For those who are entering retirement, Centrelink’s Financial Information Service runs seminars across the country and can help you access information on how to plan and manage your retirement income and savings. This service is free of charge and you don’t have to be a current Centrelink customer to access.

Depending on which payment you receive, you will also be issued with a concession card, which Centrelink also administers. Even if you’re not eligible for an income support payment, you may still receive a concession card if your income is below the required thresholds for the card that best suits your circumstance.

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Now that borders are opening around Australia, Brian and his wife are planning to live life on

Rent Assistance increases 20 March 2022

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March 2022 Low Income Health Care Card changes

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Latest JobSeeker changes 20 March 2022

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From 20 March 2022, JobSeeker rates and thresholds will be indexed.

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Mary wants to look after her mother but is worried her mum will lose the pension.

Are you eligible for the disaster recovery payment?

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Government expands eligibility for disaster support payments.

What happens to your Age Pension if you win the lotto?

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Centrelink Q&A: How are life insurance policies assessed?

Centrelink Q&A: How are life insurance policies assessed?

Life insurance policies can have an impact on any payments you receive.

Can Centrelink check your bank records?

Can Centrelink check your bank records?

Jenny claims Centrelink has been checking her bank statements to cancel her DSP.

Centrelink boss tells how to ensure benefits are paid promptly

Centrelink boss tells how to ensure benefits are paid promptly

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Older Aussies and the unemployed called on to help out in crisis

Older Aussies will be happy to do a few extra hours to help out at the moment: senator.

What expenses can you claim when renting out a room?

What expenses can you claim when renting out a room?

Mark wants to know what expenses he can offset against the income from leasing a room.

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