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Part Pensioners Losing Their Entitlements

Most retirees will have seen some warning about the forthcoming amendments to pension entitlements. Legislation was passed by both sides of Parliament last year and will become effective on 1st January 2017

Will you be affected?

Now is the time to reassess your eligibility and see if there is a monetary change to your entitlements. The changes relate to amendments in the assets thresholds, at both the lower end and the maximum allowable for a part pension.

The table below illustrates how a home-owner will be affected.

Current From 1 January 2017
Asset free threshold Pension cut-off threshold Asset free threshold Pension cut-off threshold
Single $209,000 $791,750 $250,000 $547,000
Couple (combined) $296,500 $1,175,000 $375,000 $823,000

For some seniors there will be an increase to their fortnightly payments by an increase to the lower threshold, but significantly there will be more recipients losing entitlements than gaining higher payments.

Seek advice

Don’t wait until January 2017.

Now is the time to assess the impact on your cash flow and decide what steps you will need to take in maintaining your standard of living.

A discussion with your financial adviser or credit adviser will provide alternatives relevant to your circumstances.

One of the options is to release equity in your family home, or other residential property.

When structured correctly, a regular income stream should have no effect on revised pension calculations. However, be sure to speak with an adviser who has knowledge of Centrelink rules and can make appropriate recommendations for your specific needs.