Simplifying aged care fees

Fees and charges applied by aged care facilities are asset and income tested, making it difficult to understand what you will be liable to pay.

Firstly, if you are entering a low care facility, you may have to pay an accommodation bond. If your assets are between $40,500 and $107,850.40, you may be asked to pay a small accommodation bond and you will be considered a partially subsidised resident. If your assets are over $107,850.40 then you will be asked to pay a bond, on which there is no limit but you must be left with assets of $40,500.

If you are entering a high care facility, you may be asked to pay an accommodation charge. With assets below $40,500, you will have no charge to pay, assets between $40,500 and $107,850.40 you will pay between $1 and $32.38 daily, based on a sliding scale and with assets over $107,850.40, you will pay $32.38 daily. High level care facilities can only enforce an accommodation charge if they have received Government certification.

Once you have entered a care facility, whether low or high care, you may be required to pay a basic daily fee and an income-tested fee.

Basic daily fee
You will be required to pay a daily fee at one of the following rates:
· a standard rate of $41.34 per day will apply to most aged care residents.
· a protected rate of $37.73 per day will apply to people in care on 19 September 2009 who did not get the benefit of a pension increase.
· a phased rate of $39.86 per day will apply to people who enter care on or after 20 September 2009 who did not get the benefit of a pension increase.
· a non-standard rate of $46.99 per day will apply to certain people who entered care prior to 20 March 2008.

Income-tested fee
Residents with a total assessable income above the maximum income of a full pensioner are required to pay an income-tested fee. This is based on total income and is currently capped at $66.43. It is reviewed four times every year.

For a full schedule of fees and charges, visit www.health.gov.au

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