Centrelink Q&A: Is super treated differently before you retire?

Marie and her husband are both at retirement age but haven’t touched their super yet.

Centrelink Q&A: Is super treated differently before you retire?

Marie and her husband are both at retirement age but haven’t touched their super yet, does that mean it is treated differently?

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Q. Marie
My husband and I are both at retiring age. My husband, 66, is still working full-time and I am 68 and not working. I want to know that if our super is still in the accumulative phase and not in pension-based super, is this assessed the same way by Centrelink? Is the full balance of our super accounts deemed the same as the savings accounts.

A. When you reach Age Pension age, Centrelink counts your superannuation in the assets test and in the income test, using deeming rules. The same rules apply to your husband and his super, even though he is not receiving a Centrelink payment.

However, if you can’t access your superannuation investment you may be able to have it exempted from the income and assets tests.

For Centrelink assets test purposes, superannuation assets include accumulation accounts, account-based pensions, transition to retirement pensions, annuity income streams, term allocated pensions, etc.

The Centrelink assets test assessment of superannuation is based on the value of the account on any given day, or a reducing value, as is the case with annuity income streams.

A Centrelink assessment of an accumulation account is based on the current value under the assets test.

Are you eligible for an Age Pension? Do you know your rights? The PensionChecker™ tool has all the information you need.

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