The 2014-15 Budget was handed down on Tuesday, 13 May 2014. What does the Budget mean to your pension?
The Department of Human Services (DHS) website Budget page contains Budget information that may affect people who use the Department of Human Services programs – Centrelink, Medicare, Child Support and CRS Australia.
The page has information on the left side menu, grouped in a way that makes it quick and easy to find what matters most to you.
Note:Updates may occur, so you should continue to check for any new information that might be of interest over the weeks.
You can also view the Australian Government Budget website for more information about the 2014-15 Budget.
An alphabetical listing of all the 2014-15 Budget measures relevant to the department is also available.
Some key topics under “Older Australians” are –
- Cessation of the Seniors Supplement – Commonwealth Seniors Health Card holders The Seniors Supplement for Commonwealth Seniors Health Card (CSHC) holders will no longer be paid beyond the June 2014 quarterly payment. From this date CSHC holders will continue to receive only the Energy Supplement each quarter.
- Commonwealth Seniors Health Card – annual indexation of income thresholds
From September 2014, the Commonwealth Seniors Health Card (CSHC) income threshold rates will be indexed annually by movements in the Consumer Price Index.
Currently, to qualify for a CSHC a person must have adjusted taxable income below the relevant annual income thresholds. These are $50,000 for singles, $80,000 for couples, combined, or $100,000 for a couple separated by respite care, illness, or when one member of the couple is in prison. These thresholds will increase with indexation.
The additional dependent child amount will not be indexed.
The higher income threshold rates will allow more people to qualify for a CSHC.
- Commonwealth Seniors Health Card – include untaxed superannuation income in the eligibility assessment
From 1 January 2015, non-taxable superannuation income will be included in the Commonwealth Seniors Health Card (CSHC) income test. This means that from 1 January 2015, superannuation account based income streams will be deemed under the existing deeming rules for the Age Pension.
From 1 January 2015 this will affect all new CSHC holders.
This is subject to a grandfathering provision. This means that there will be no change for customers who are existing CSHC holders as at 1 January 2015 and who have existing superannuation account based income streams. However any new superannuation account based income streams purchased by these customers after 1 January 2015 will be subject to the new deeming rules.
The current qualification age for the Age Pension is 65 years, increasing to 67 years by 1 July 2023. This measure increases the qualifying age from 67 to 70 years. On 1 July 2025 the qualifying age will increase from 67 years by six months every two years until 1 July 2035 when the Age Pension qualifying age will reach 70.
This change applies to people born after 30 June 1958 who claim Age Pension from 1 July 2025.
From 20 September 2017 the deeming provision thresholds for payments which are means tested will be reset to $30,000 for singles and $50,000 for couples (for both pensioners and allowees). The current thresholds are $46,600 for singles, $77,400 for pensioner couples and $38,700 for members of allowee couples.
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