How do I start my retirement?

Robert is planning on retiring next year but isn’t sure at what stage he should apply for an Age Pension, or whether he is even eligible.

Q. Robert
I will reach Age Pension age early next year but don’t know how to start the process of retirement. I have never had any dealings with Centrelink and don’t know whether I need to contact them, if they will contact me or if I will even be eligible to receive the Age Pension. Can you point me in the right direction?

A. Robert, working out where you stand financially is the critical first step in planning your retirement.  At any time, you can make an appointment to speak to a Centrelink Financial Information Services Officer (FISO) who will be able to discuss with you whether your assets and income will affect payment of the Age Pension, how to claim, and which concession cards may be available. You can make an appointment by calling 13 2300.

You can also view the current income and asset limits that apply, but you will need to be aware that there may be other factors taken into consideration when assessing your eligibility for the Age Pension.

Of course, you may decide to continue working after you have reached Age Pension age. If this is the case, the Work Bonus may enable you to receive a part or full pension. Under the Work Bonus, the first $250 of any fortnightly income will not be assessed. If you undertake seasonal work, this amount can be annualised. Find out more about the Work Bonus.  

YourLifeChoices has produced a guide, Your retirement and the Age Pension, which simplifies many of the rules surrounding the Age Pension. You can download a free copy by clicking on the link below.

Download the free Your retirement and the Age Pension guide.

Written by Debbie McTaggart

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