Do you qualify for the Federal Government Age Pension? Here we cover the eligibility requirements and how much you can expect to receive.
In Australia, the age at which workers can access the Age Pension is gradually increasing, so it is important to know where you stand.
Australians were eligible for the Age Pension from age 65 but from 1 July 2017, this increased to 65 years and 6 months and will continue to increase by six months every two years, reaching age 67 by 2023.
To qualify for the Age Pension, you will need to meet the Government’s age and residence requirements. How much you get will depend on your income, assets and other circumstances.
For most people, the Age Pension will not be sufficient to achieve a comfortable lifestyle in retirement, so having a healthy superannuation balance at retirement is important.
As a guide, here are the current payments for those who are entitled to the full Age Pension. These numbers are reviewed by the Government annually.
|Single person||Couple living together||Couple separated due to ill health|
|Maximum basic rate||$843.60||$635.90 each||$843.60 each|
|Maximum pension supplement||$68.50||$51.60 each||$68.50 each|
|Clean energy supplement||$14.10||$10.60 each||$14.10 each|
|Total per fortnight||$926.20||$698.10 each||$926.20 each|
Starting 1 January 2017, the Federal Government changed the thresholds for the Age Pension asset test.
Currently a home owning couple with assets totaling $860,000, which does not include the family home, can qualify for a part Age Pension.
For home owning singles, the threshold is $572,000.
The taper rate, which is the rate at which the Age Pension decreases for every $1,000 of assets over the $394,500 threshold for home owning couples, is $3.00.
For singles who own their own home, the threshold for tapering is $263,250.
Those who don't qualify for any age pension may qualify for the Commonwealth Seniors Health Card, which provides holders access to cheaper medicine, health services and subsidised electricity bills.
There are strategies available that may potentially help you maximise your Age Pension entitlements. This is why it is important to see your LGS financial planner to discuss your circumstances. You can call us on 1300 LGSUPER (1300 547 873) between 8.30am and 5.00pm, Monday to Friday, to get in touch with your financial planner.