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Everything you need to know about the Seniors Health Card

This year’s Federal Budget made four important changes to the Commonwealth Seniors Health Card (CSHC). These changes seem to be causing a bit of confusion.

The CSHC is a valuable benefit, especially if you’re not entitled to the Aged Pension. It will remain valuable even with the proposed changes.

Here I’ll explain those benefits and the proposed budgetary changes.

CSHC eligibility criteria

To get the CSHC, you need to satisfy all the following criteria:

The Commonwealth Seniors Health Care Card is only valid for a 12-month period and must be applied for each year. To successfully apply, you need to give Centrelink your Tax File Number (or be eligible for an exemption from this requirement).

2014 Budget changes to eligibility

What does the CSHC entitle you to?

Retirees are entitled to:

Conclusion

CSHC remains a valuable benefit and the addition of deemed account-based pension income is an important change. I have discussed this issue before [1] from a Centrelink perspective. If you don’t receive the Aged Pension because of the income test but will be eligible for the CSHC, then you might want to look at this deeming issue before January.

Important: This content has been prepared without taking account of the objectives, financial situation or needs of any particular individual. It does not constitute formal advice. Consider the appropriateness of the information in regards to your circumstances.

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