Do you qualify for second $750 payment?

The federal government’s second $750 economic support payment is due to be sent to eligible Australians from 13 July. Have your circumstances changed and could you now be in line for a payment?

Two government measures have either come into effect in recent weeks or will by 1 July and could have an impact on your retirement income and, as a result, your eligibility. The second $750 support payment applies to Australians receiving an eligible government payment or holding an eligible concession card on 10 July.

Revised income and assets test thresholds for the Age Pension take effect on 1 July and a reduction in the deeming rates took effect on 1 May. Both may alter your assessable income for the Age Pension and associated benefits.

There is set to be small rise in the disqualifying limits for the Age Pension. You can find all the details here.

Eligible payments for the support payment include: Age Pension, Disability Support Pension, Carer Payment, Carer Allowance, Parenting Payment, Wife Pension, Widow B Pension, Bereavement Allowance, JobSeeker Allowance, Partner Allowance, Sickness Allowance, Special Benefit, Widow Allowance, Farm Household Allowance, Family Tax Benefit A and B.

You’ll also get the payment if you have a Pensioner Concession Card, Commonwealth Seniors Health Card or Veteran Gold Card, or one of the following Department of Veterans’ Affairs payments: Veteran Service Pension, Veteran Income Support Supplement, Veteran Compensation payments, including lump sum payments, War Widow(er) Pension.

Services Australia advises that if you get an eligible payment, or have an eligible concession card on 10 July, it will automatically pay you the second economic support payment.

It says that if you have a Commonwealth Seniors Health Care Card (CSHC), make sure Services Australia has your bank account details. To receive a CSHC you must be of Age Pension age but not eligible to claim an Age Pension, and you must pass an income test.

The benefits of a CSHC vary from state to state, but it entitles all holders to access cheaper medicines via the Pharmaceutical Benefits Scheme (PBS).

Services Australia says the exact date for the support payment will be different for everyone. “We’ll start paying it from 15 July. You should see it in your bank account before the end of July. You may see it in your bank account up to 48 hours before it appears in your online account.”

About 6.5 million Australians are expected to get the second $750 payment. It is not counted as income for social security and family tax benefit payments, aged care fees and charges, Farm Household Allowance and veterans’ payments. It is tax exempt and Services Australia will not use it to pay off an existing debt.

JobKeeper and increased JobSeeker payments are due to end in September.

Treasurer Josh Frydenberg said JobKeeper was providing payments of some $1500 a fortnight to 3.5 million workers and supporting nearly a million businesses.

“That’s on top of the cash flow boost, which is a $30 billion program, assessed on the size of a particular business’s pay roll. As well as an extra $750 payments going to households in July.”

This week, international credit rating agency Moody’s retained Australia’s triple AAA rating, based largely on the health of the economy and the nation’s economic handling of the COVID-19 pandemic.

Mr Frydenberg welcomed the appraisal, but said: “There is still a lot of work to do to make Australia completely coronavirus free. There is still a long way to go.”

In YourLifeChoices’ 2020 Life In A Post-Pandemic World survey, which received 4575 response, 85 per cent of participants rated the threat of COVID-19 to the Australian economy as either most severe or severe.

Asked to gauge the effect of the pandemic on their retirement income, 24 per cent said it was slight, while at the other end of the scale almost 10 per cent (9.95 per cent) said severe.

Did you receive the first support payment? How did you use the funds?

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