Now that super has bombed, can you reapply for the pension?

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Joseph used to receive a part pension and wants to know if he needs to reapply to get it back?


Q. Joseph
With recent events affecting super and retirement savings, my wife and I (both in our mid-70s) are in a position now to requalify for a part age pension. This was taken away from us in January 2017 when the government of the day moved the goalposts on all our planning by rejigging the assets test downwards. The part pension was then automatically taken from us as Centrelink had/has all our financial details of income and assets, and made us ineligible. Bearing this in mind, if they have all that info on hand would the part Age Pension be automatically restored? Or do we have to go through all the bureaucratic hassle and hoops on filling out forms again and enclosing evidence from super funds, banks, shares, etc again! Does not Centrelink have all this on our myGov account?

A. The Age Pension will not be automatically reinstated. Those who lost their eligibility for the Age Pension due to the income and assets test changes that came into effect on 1 January 2017, must reapply if their financial circumstances have since changed.

However, in most circumstances, the majority of details from your previous claim will be pre-filled for you to make reapplying for Age Pension more streamlined.

You will need to make sure all your details are up to date, including updating your financial circumstances if they have changed since your previous claim. You may also need to provide verification of your current circumstances.

The Department of Human Services has made a range of improvements to the process of claiming an Age Pension.

The newsystem makes it easier for people to apply, and individuals registered with Centrelink can submit their entire application online without having to visit a service centre.

People can also save the progress of their application while online and log back in to finish it later. This feature is handy for applicants who, perhaps, need to gather more information or documentation to assist with their claim.

If a person was previously a Centrelink payment recipient, the system will automatically fill in their personal and financial details on the Age Pension claim. Applicants just need to confirm or update the pre-populated information already provided.

Once submitted, applicants can check the status of their claim online at any time using the Claim Tracker.

Applying through the online claiming channel is faster and more efficient, as it ensures all necessary information is submitted at the time of lodgement. However, staff will be available to support people as they complete their claims, whether over the phone or in person at a service centre.

Do you think your circumstances have changed sufficiently that you may be eligible for Age Pension payments? Have you tried to reapply for entitlements … and if so, what was your experience?

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Written by Ben


Total Comments: 22
  1. 0

    Made fresh claim updating asset details from the prefilled claim. Simple process as long as you have all the current balances etc at hand. Downloaded and attached the Centrelink super scheduled. Was quietly surprised to have review completed in 10 days with back payment from date of fresh claim. Superannuation essentially only key financial asset making assessment straight forward. Nice work Centrelink with the timeline in these challenging times.

  2. 0

    By all means reapply, but be careful. My wife and I are in similar circumstances and we have pensioner Concession Cards and Health Cards for life, without any further income/assets tests. If you successfully reapply and get a part pension you will keep the concession cards BUT if your circumstances change again and you lose the pension you will lose the right to the Concessions cards as well. We have elected not to apply as we see long term value in keeping our pensioner Concession Card for life.

  3. 0

    Irrelevantl question but since I am allowed to apply for age pension in July 13 weeks before my birthday have other people found it easy to do online ? Or am I better to go into a centrelink office . Live in country but even though the office is a 40 minute drive it’s not a massive wait

    • 0

      Maybe a good move to go to the office. Get all forms first and fill them all in before making the appointment. If you only had a few different jobs in life and did not live abroad it should be straight forward. I did it that way and had no problems apart from having to apply also for a small part pension from overseas (more forms).

    • 0

      I agree with Mariner, JB, and I would add that you should ask that original documents be copied while you are there and handed back. I had no problems but a friend had some serious problems when Centrelink lost his file which had original documents enclosed.

    • 0

      Have a go online JB, don’t go into a Centrelink office at the moment, they are trying to limit face to face interactions, you may well be told to go home and do it online.

    • 0

      Online is relatively straight forward. However, unless they have relaxed the rules in the last month, they still want you to go into an Office so they can verify your identity.

  4. 0

    I re applied last week and was dreading having to go through that lot again, however I was surprised the site is so much easier to navigate and it took about an hour to complete.
    Downside, they said 50 days to respond, but in light of the current chaos I can wait.

  5. 0

    Made a claim 1 year ago, rejected and then reapplied 3 weeks ago and today I have just received notification that I have been paid a part pension!
    Whats happened? Simple quick…
    Now I have a problem.
    My understanding is that I will be eligible for the JobKeeper (i’m still trying to work).
    If that is backdated will I have a debt?
    I know considering the problems of others this is minor, but..

    • 0

      You need to contact them and explain your situation. You may be better off on part pension plus concessions and the Work Bonus. You can’t have both the Pension and Job Seeker

  6. 0

    I tried online, but could not update my assets (to reflect lower super pension balance). So I downloaded the forms, filled them in & went to my Centrelink office. Had a 4.5 hour wait – but didn’t mind, as there are people much worse off than me.

  7. 0

    Agree with Trevor…the on line system is now very good and a lot of the details are prefixed.
    Just updated our assets ( super balance ) to reflect the financial hit from Covid19 and received written coco. of part pension increase.
    This in total contrast to a bruising 3 month encounter with them over notification of a INCREASE in super balance last October…go figure?
    Maybe they are so busy at present that approvals are going ahead without the usual microscopic and paranoid thirst for additional data….who knows in these times.

  8. 0

    Thanks for that advice . Reason I am a bit apprehensive about doing it all online at home as a couple years back I tried to renew a health care card online and didn’t do something right . It ended up being cancelled and then had to go through the process again . Will get all my original documents and anything else I can . Husband already on the pension but that was a simple procedure back then but thank you for your advice

  9. 0

    Great to see so many positive comments in light of the current situation.
    And also the comment that there are people worse off than some of us. It would be terrific if some of this positivity carried through after the pandemic is finished.

  10. 0

    I am in the same position as Buggsie, and am also concerned that if my part pension is reinstated due to the current decline in the stockmarket and decrease in my investment assets, will I lose my “permanent reinstated” PCC if the market recovers and my assets exceed the limit and I lose the part pension.
    I read McDaddy‘s comment that my PCC for life would be reinstated, and that would be great, but is there somewhere that I can officially confirm that fact.
    I submitted an online application today, but am now on the verge of withdrawing, due to my concerns – my(our) PCC for life is invaluable.



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