Pension advance payments assist pensioners to budget and to meet large or unforeseen costs.
Pension advance payments allow pensioners to receive a portion of their future pension entitlement as a lump sum.
Which pensions allow advance payments?
- Age Pension
- Disability Support Pension (including for those aged under 21 years, without children)
- Carer Payment
- Widow B Pension
- Wife Pension.
The Department of Veterans’ Affairs has similar rules for its income support payments.
What are the minimum and maximum pension advance payment amounts from September 2013?
- the minimum and maximum advance amounts are $390.20 and $1,170.60 for single pensioners
- the minimum and maximum advance amounts are $294.10 and $882.30 for each member of a couple.
How do the rules for pension advances work?
Single maximum rate pensioner
On 20 September 2013, Joan, a single maximum-rate age pensioner, applies for an advance for the first time. In the six months from 20 September 2013, Joan may access an advance payment lump sum ranging from $390.20 (the minimum amount) to $1,170.60 (the maximum amount).
There are a variety of advance payment options for Joan. Joan may choose to receive a single amount or any combination of amounts between $390.20 and $1,170.60 over 13 fortnights, providing they are, in total, no more than the maximum amount of $1,170.60.
Example: On 20 September 2013, Joan elects to be paid a single advance of the maximum amount of $1,170.60. Her advance would be recovered over 13 fortnights by deducting 12 repayments of $90.05 and a final, thirteenth of $90.00. Joan would be able to apply for another advance after 20 March 2014 (assuming the previous advance has been fully recovered).
Partnered part-rate pensioners
On 20 September 2013, Bill and Mary, a part-rate age pensioner couple, each apply for an advance payment for the first time. Bill and Mary’s total fortnightly pension payments are $374.90 each.
Each may access an advance payment lump sum between $294.10 (minimum amount for the partnered rate) and $682.50 (maximum amount for Bill and Mary’s part rate of fortnightly pension).
Bill and Mary have various advance payment options. They may each choose to receive a single amount or any combination of amounts between $294.10 and $682.50 over 13 fortnights, providing they are, in total, no more than the maximum amount of $682.50 each.
Example: On 20 September 2013, Bill and Mary elect to be paid maximum advances of $682.50 each. Their advances would be recovered over 13 fortnights by deducting 13 repayments of $52.50 each. They would be able to apply for another advance after 20 March 2014 (assuming the previous advance has been fully recovered).
Further information on pension advance payments can be obtained from the Department of Human Services website, by visiting the nearest Customer Service Centre, or by phoning 13 2300.