‘Why has my pension payment been reduced?’

Max’s pension has been cut from $574 a fortnight to just $220, and he wants to know why.

‘Why has my pension payment been reduced?’

Max’s pension has been cut from $574 a fortnight to just $220, and he wants to know why.


Q. Max
I am on the Age Pension and was receiving $574 dollars a fortnight. My wife has just reached Age Pension age, has now retired and successfully applied for the Age Pension. We now both receive $220 a fortnight which in total is much less than I received before she applied. Should we find out why or is this standard practice? Can you help?

A. Without knowing your exact circumstances, it is difficult to know precisely the reason why you are now receiving less pension.

However, one of the reasons this reduction can occur once your wife has her pension approved relates to the new assessment for you under both the income and assets tests.

While one member of a couple is not of pension age, the older member of the couple may be eligible for a higher rate of pension. This is because any superannuation held in the younger partner’s name is not counted as an asset until they reach Age Pension age.

In this situation, the age pensioner will only have the value of their superannuation counted under the assets test and the net value of the pension they receive, after deducting the purchase price of the pension, under the income test.

The partner who is not of Age Pension age does not have the value of their superannuation counted unless they are receiving a pension.

However, upon retirement, that sum of money will now be included in your combined assets, and deeming will be applied under the income test.

This is my best guess as to why you are now receiving less pension. However, if this does not describe your current financial situation, you should definitely make an appointment to visit a Centrelink Financial Information Services Officer who should be able to explain the reasons behind your changed situation.

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

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    Disclaimer: All content on YourLifeChoices website is of a general nature and has been prepared without taking into account your objectives, financial situation or needs. It has been prepared with due care but no guarantees are provided for the ongoing accuracy or relevance. Before making a decision based on this information, you should consider its appropriateness in regard to your own circumstances. You should seek professional advice from a financial planner, lawyer or tax agent in relation to any aspects that affect your financial and legal circumstances.


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    Karl Marx
    23rd Aug 2019
    Obviously your assets or income combined has reduced you pension but then again centrelink can do whatever they want without any breakdown whatever as they don't have to give you that information. I'd be worried now about getting a robodebt in the near future again without any breakdown or explanation.
    23rd Aug 2019
    Such is the climate of fear generated by this current despotic style of governance...... forewarned is forearmed... price of liberty and all that...

    In English - too many people have been burned by now by this style of government action, in many ways, and whatever trust they may have once had in the proper running of their country on their behalf by politicians is gone...

    We need a Hong Kong or a West Papua solution - they step out of line - so do we - en masse.
    23rd Aug 2019
    I totally agree with Trebor, the Lying Nasty Parasite Party is treating Australians like prisoners.
    23rd Aug 2019
    Quite right, Karl & Trebor, Gestapo tool Robodebt is something to watch out for. Yes, Trebor, add Paris Yellow Vests to the list of action options to emulate...no updates nowadays on mainstream media about them these days, wonder why.

    TinTin, Labor would be no different, last action by them was to increase the Pension Age to 67, besides being the party which delivered the Assets Test and Deeming for the Income Test. They also refused to reverse the Libs nasty Asset Test changes.
    23rd Aug 2019
    Totally agree with you.
    24th Aug 2019
    BS, he gets a letter explaining what the Pension is now going to be and what total and income and assets are used to determine that. CL can't do whatever they like either. If he had access to mygov and he could easily see what assets are being assessed.
    Some people prefer to stay in the dark and whinge.
    Chris B T
    23rd Aug 2019
    What extra information you gave Centrelink, without knowing that it is hard to know why this has happen.
    As stated it is the included Superannuation of your wife's, as the rest should be the same.
    Lump sum Payment on termination as well.
    Might need a Jackhammer to Breakdown the Brick Wall they put in your way though.
    ray @ Bondi
    23rd Aug 2019
    a married couple does not receive 2 single pensions they receive 1 and a 1/2, why do you think years ago the government forced all couples to register as married same sex or whatever.
    Chris B T
    24th Aug 2019
    Where did I say 2 single pensions.
    Couples never receive 1 pension, they receive half a couple pension then which 1 catches up they will receive a full couple pension unless same age.
    This is not the in case mentioned.
    It is the Unstated Amounts/Entries on OAP application has made the reduced amount occurred.
    23rd Aug 2019
    DEEMING RATES on cash Term Deposits!
    23rd Aug 2019
    Same old story pick on the elderly and keep paying the lazy youth without question....
    23rd Aug 2019
    Lenyjac. Now, you know the last part of your comment is not correct. There is 1 job vacancy for every 15 to 16 job seekers http://unemployedworkersunion.com/job-seekers-v-job-vacancy-data/ People do it hard on the paltry Newstart allowance, & Centrelink take money off them if they do not comply with the strict conditions.
    23rd Aug 2019
    Justsane - HUH! - 'take money of them if they don't comply' - believe me, they are experts at knowing the lurks to not comply. I was out walking one afternoon in my local park - saw a Toyota Rosa campervan parked there and got talking to the young ones as I have done some travelling. There were 4 of them, mid 20's. They told me they had been travelling for 8 months, and all were on Newstart. Told me this brought in $2120 each fortnight: they each kept $50 a week for their own personal use - the balance went in the kitty. $1720 to live on travelling for the fortnight was pretty good! I asked how they managed with the Newstart job requirements and they practically laughed. One of them said he lived in a high employment area, where jobs were scarce, so they all used that address, and in all the previous 8 months, not once had they been called in about job requirements. None had ever had their payments reduced or suspended.
    They said if they found a cash paying job along the way they would do it but no longer than 2 weeks,and had to be for all of the 4. They planned to do this for at least another 12 months before heading overseas. So Newstart was working very well for them.
    It's the people over 50 on Newstart that need help. Having been there, all I can say is thank heavens I am now on the Aged Pension.

    23rd Aug 2019
    Happens to most of us with a slightly younger partner. Super does not have to be declared and then with pension age for the younger spouse it becomes visible. Happened to me and I was fully aware of it - sure a bit disappointing but then . . . thems the rules!
    23rd Aug 2019
    Don't feel too sorry for old mate, apart from the value of his home they must have app $720k in assets, still getting app $11500 Pension between them. They'll be ok.
    24th Aug 2019
    Does not say he got a property but apart from that I agree with you McDaddy!
    ray @ Bondi
    23rd Aug 2019
    labor many years ago gave single pensioners a rise, how did they pay for that by reducing the married pension the second person used to have 3/4 of a single pension. and for years they flapped their hawk-like wings crowing about how they help single pensioners, (which they did) but at a real cost to married couples, another example of the Orwellian duopoly government that are our masters. As we all know 2 people do not live that much cheaper than 2 individuals, but like the bank rate deaming do they care?? I think not.

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