Questions of the Week – Pensions

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Question: Can you refer me to any articles or webinars that you may have presented in relation to obtaining/qualifying for a full or part-pension with Centrelink? If the members are currently on an ABP, can they still qualify? I am aware that there are two tests that apply (1) Income Test & (2) Assets Test. If a couple had an SMSF with assets of say $850K plus other assets outside the fund of say $74K and draw an ABP of say $60K, would they qualify for a part-pension? I am aware that there will be a change on 1 January 2017.

Answer (by Paul Rickard): As you note, there are two tests  - an income test and an assets test.

For the income test, your assets (ABP/super assets of $850K plus other assets of $74K) will be subject to deeming. Currently for a couple, the deemed income is 1.75% on the first $80,600, and 3.75% on the balance. On circa $924K, this is approx. $33,038 pa or $1,270 per fortnight.  Where your fortnightly income is above $288, the pension is reduced by 50c per fortnight for each dollar of income. So, your pension would be reduced by approx. $491 to a max of $826.40 (current max couple pension is $1,317.40 per fortnight).

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