12th Oct 2018
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Guide to keeping up to date with retirement income changes
Author: Janelle Ward
Latest retirement income changes

YourLifeChoices keeps you up to date with retirement income changes.

From 20 September 2018, the following pension payment rates apply:

Maximum Age Pension payment rates
  Previous Current Increase
Single base $826.20 $834.40 $8.20
Supplement $67.30 $67.80 $0.50
Energy supplement $14.10 $14.10 $0.00
TOTAL:  $907.60 $916.30 $8.70
Couple (each) Base $622.80 $629.00 $6.20
Supplement $50.70 $51.10 $0.40
Energy supplement $10.60 $10.60 $0.00
TOTAL:  $684.10 $690.70 $6.60


Pension supplement

The supplement is paid as part of certain regular fortnightly income support payments to help eligible recipients meet the costs of daily household and living expenses.

Pension supplement - basic amount (for those receiving a pension while overseas)
  Previous Current Increase
Single $23.40 $23.60 $0.20
Couple separated $23.40 $23.60 $0.20
Couple (each) $19.20 $19.40 $0.20
Pension supplement - minimum amount (for those paid a pension under the transitional rules)
  Previous Current Increase
Single $36.10 $36.30 $0.20
Couple separated $36.10 $36.30 $0.20
Couple (each) $27.20 $27.40 $0.20


Asset and income test thresholds

Changes to income and asset thresholds took effect on 20 September.

The new Centrelink income test limits for full age pensioners are:

Situation For full pension/allowance (per fortnight) For past pension(pf) From 1 July 2018
Single up to $172 less than $2004.60
Couple (combined) up to $304 less than $3066.80
Illness separated (couple combined) up to $304 less than $3969.20

And the new asset test limits for full age pensioners:

Situation Homeowners Non-homeowners
Single $258,500 $465,500
Couple (combined) $387,500 $594,500
Illness separated (couple combined) $387,500 $594,500


Commonwealth Seniors Health Card
From 20 September, to pass the income test, you must earn no more than:

$54,929 a year if you’re single – $1130 increase
$87,884 a year for couples – $1808 increase

Aged Care Royal Commission
Prime Minister Scott Morrison has announced a Royal Commission into Aged Care Quality and Safety. It will look at:

  • the quality of care provided to older Australians and the extent of substandard care
  • the challenge of providing care to Australians with disabilities living in residential aged care, particularly younger people with disabilities
  • the challenge of supporting the increasing number of Australians suffering dementia and addressing their care needs as they age
  • the future challenges and opportunities for delivering aged care services in the context of changing demographics, including in remote, rural and regional Australia.

Anyone with concerns about the quality and safety of aged care can contact the Aged Care Complaints Commissioner on 1800 550 552 or lodge a complaint online.

Tax return deadline
If you earnt any income in the 2017–18 financial year, you must lodge a tax return by 31 October.

To lodge online, you need a myGov account linked to the Australian Tax Office (ATO).

If you are completing your own tax return and need an extension, contact the ATO as soon as possible.

Most registered tax agents have special schedules and can lodge returns for clients later than 31 October.

Finding it hard to keep up-to-date with retirement rules? The RetirePlanner™ tool has all the information you need.

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    COMMENTS

    To make a comment, please register or login
    Lothario
    21st Oct 2018
    12:01pm
    I still don't know how the government comes up with a difference of only $207k between a homeowner & non homeowner. Are they valuing the average Australian home at only $207k, you can't buy a dog box in woop woop for that.
    Situation Homeowners Non-homeowners
    Single $258,500 $465,500
    Cowboy Jim
    21st Oct 2018
    12:11pm
    It is a reward for getting your own roof over your head and thus saving the Govt in social housing costs and rent assistance. If no one would look after themselves we would be living like the Aboriginals in settlements and the Government would have to continually fix them up.
    I suppose we would not have a real estate industry and forever rising house prices. No costs put aside for housing we could all spend the dough on booze, ciggies and gambling - hey what a hoot.
    Rae
    21st Oct 2018
    6:45pm
    You can rent for many years by investing 207K and that is assuming a home owner probably paid over $207K in interest and housing costs while a non home owner may have invested that money in shares and bonds and that could be worth millions now.

    There are very high costs to buying and holding property which non home owners have never had to bear. Buying and holding doesn't come without costs. Renters can avoid those risks so to discount to market price would be unfair.
    floss
    21st Oct 2018
    1:56pm
    Spot on Cowboy big Joe Hockey killed any incentive to save for your old age.Perhaps people are starting to wake up as seen at last Saturday's by election.
    VeryCaringBigBear
    21st Oct 2018
    4:54pm
    Wentworth election is now very close.
    Dermot
    7th Nov 2018
    1:51am
    All hail PM SCUMMO - a real Australian President. How delusional is this clown ???????


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