I have been living overseas for three years and I’m 65. Prior to those three years, I lived and worked in Australia for 32 years.
To qualify for an Age Pension to be paid while I am overseas, I understand that I must be in Australia for two years to apply for the pension and meet the income and asset test. What do they mean by two years? Will there be restrictions on my travel plans during this time?
A: You will need to return to Australia to apply for the Age Pension and remain here for two calendar years before your Age Pension is considered portable.
There are a few things you should note: It can take a considerable amount of time for Centrelink to process and approve your claim. We have had emails from people who have been waiting in excess of five months.
Centrelink does not issue specific guidelines for overseas holiday travel, so you will need to confirm directly with a Centrelink officer as to whether your travel plans could affect your two-year residency period.
As you do not have a full 35-year work life residency, your Age Pension will be paid pro rata based on the 32 years you lived and worked in Australia.
If you have a Centrelink question, send it to [email protected] and we’ll do our best to answer it, or find someone who can.