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No Increase to Aus Pension


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6 hours ago, 4MyEgo said:

 

Now I have not seen anything written on this, however have heard from my wife who is a member of a Thai forum of women in Australia, and she has heard women complaining that their husbands have had their pensions stopped when they left to go back to Thailand again. All had gone back when they were of OAP age, applied, were approved, received their pensions, left for Thailand, pensions were paid, went back to Oz a year or two later, stayed for a short period 1,2,3 months and left for Thailand again, shortly after they all left their pensions stopped as Centrelink stated that their residence was Thailand and could no longer receive the pension, e.g. it was either one residence, Australia to receive the pension, or Thailand not to receive the pension. Yes it sounds crazy and there are avenues to appeal, however I have not seen anything in writing or heard of any appeals at this time.

 

 

It's quite alarming, if true.

I know from experience Centrelink avoids putting things in writing, in case it is used against them. They blocked my PBS discount with a verbal statement, have never seen anything in writing.

IMO  that would be a bridge too far, even for Centrelink. Every other Western country allows pension portability, and there would be a blizzard of emails and letters to Federal MP's. Labor would have a field day.

Can you imagine Dutton or Tudge fronting Parliament, and trying to explain that policy? Even they don't have the brass balls for that.

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Look on the bright side. You're in Thailand and not Melbourne.

OP, your pension is not nothing, and you will receive that. It's the $25 a fortnight that your bitching about, well why should you get it, you are not in the country, , you are not spending anything i

The pension did not increase because inflation was actually negative in Aust. Pension increases are linked to CPI increases - but payments were held not reduced (of course). There is no $25

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1 hour ago, Lacessit said:

Permit me to doubt that. The Baby Boomers are still a significant voting bloc. Politicians on both sides of the fence know it is electoral suicide to mess with pensions. More likely inflation will be allowed to quietly reduce their purchasing power.

I agree young people are being dudded now, and will be in the future. However, their voting power will increase as we die off.

Permission granted.

However, who will be providing the money for the pensions?

 

Did you miss the issue of changing the pension age? That went through without blood in the streets.

 

No reason why they cant keep upping the age, or decrease the amount, or reduce the assets level for cutoff, or include the primary home in the assets, or a bazillion other things.

 

A wise person would make other arrangements, with any future (reduced) pension simply considered a bonus - and much more than most of the world gets.

 

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11 minutes ago, oznomad said:

Permission granted.

However, who will be providing the money for the pensions?

 

Did you miss the issue of changing the pension age? That went through without blood in the streets.

 

No reason why they cant keep upping the age, or decrease the amount, or reduce the assets level for cutoff, or include the primary home in the assets, or a bazillion other things.

 

A wise person would make other arrangements, with any future (reduced) pension simply considered a bonus - and much more than most of the world gets.

 

They can find sneaky ways to cut things. The rebate for private health insurance was set at 30 per cent but subsequently  they, I think it was Tony Abbott,  introduced new rules so each year that 30 per cent goes down bit by bit. Each year it's only a small amount and you don't notice it but now its about 25 per for some and a lot less for others.   They might do the same with the pension. It's likely those in the system will be OK. The next generation will cop it.

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50 minutes ago, oznomad said:

Permission granted.

However, who will be providing the money for the pensions?

 

Did you miss the issue of changing the pension age? That went through without blood in the streets.

 

No reason why they cant keep upping the age, or decrease the amount, or reduce the assets level for cutoff, or include the primary home in the assets, or a bazillion other things.

 

A wise person would make other arrangements, with any future (reduced) pension simply considered a bonus - and much more than most of the world gets.

 

Certainly people getting a full pension while living in multi-million dollar homes is patently ridiculous, and reform is overdue. Perhaps a limit on the value of the home, above which the assets test kicks in.

 

I don't know if I am wise, but i am running down my asset level progressively to minimize the effect of one of the eventualities you mention. Does make me wonder how many pensioners have cash or gold under their mattresses.

 

I got in ahead of the pension age increase. It was inevitable with increasing life expectancy.

One of the major mistakes IMO the pollies are making, is pinning their hopes on self-funded retirees with healthy superannuation balances. The tectonic shift to gig economies and casual employment is neutering their hopes, and COVID-19 certainly isn't helping.

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On 9/14/2020 at 10:30 PM, digger70 said:

Pensioners  Living In Aus Got the $750 Twice According to a Friend in Aus .

Us Living in Los Got 0

Some got it once, some got it twice. Some bloke reckons he got it while living in LOS - maybe.

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15 hours ago, Lacessit said:

It's quite alarming, if true.

I know from experience Centrelink avoids putting things in writing, in case it is used against them. They blocked my PBS discount with a verbal statement, have never seen anything in writing.

IMO  that would be a bridge too far, even for Centrelink. Every other Western country allows pension portability, and there would be a blizzard of emails and letters to Federal MP's. Labor would have a field day.

Can you imagine Dutton or Tudge fronting Parliament, and trying to explain that policy? Even they don't have the brass balls for that.

It is true - I have been warning people on this site for months.  If you spend time in both Thailand (or wherever) and also in Australia, while on the pension, CLink can cease the pension when you go overseas.  You must do one or the other - live in Aust or live in Thailand (or wherever).  I wont bore (again) with the details (see my posts), but if you live in Australia then do not spend more than 5-6 weeks in Thailand without giving explanation to CLink - stating that you are visiting and where and when and why etc. Likewise, when living in Thailand do not spend more than 5-6 weeks in Australia without advising CLink of the same details.  I am not certain of the period, but if a pensioner residing overseas comes back into Aust for more than  'x'  weeks then they are deemed to have resided in Aust again (if no explanation). This 'x' period means that CLink can determine that they are a 'returning' pension eligible person, and that they must wait 2 years for portability.  How long is 'x'?  I think about 6 weeks is OK - but maybe 12 is the limit - I dont know and they wont say - I get the usual 'it all depends on individual circumstances.' which means they can decide whatever they want to decide.

 

By the way - in answer to the political points you make, I am sorry but that is wrong.

Labor does not care about pensioners that much - because they vote liberal far more than labor.

But Liberals dont care about pensioners enough because they are not 'vocal' enough. 

If any Govt tries to decrease benefits to dole/disability etc. there is a media uproar - lots of vested interests.

If any Govt tries to decrease benefits to pensioners, there is very little media blow back.

I once contacted the Aust Pensioners Association about something - they are useless bureaucratic di**heads and is full of women running the place - they do not give a rat's rear end about expat men overseas.

 

 

 

 

 

 

  

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When the pension was first conceived in the early 1900s it was 65 for males and 60 for females, to fund the pension tax was raised by 7 percent this continued until i think the nineteen eighties and the fund had hundred of millions of dollars in reserve, now the gov of the day stole it and it was transferred to consolidated revenue the tax was never taken off.

 

 

 

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23 hours ago, Dazinoz said:

As I say I get conflicting stories from Centrelink, my accountant and TVF posters and another forum I am on for Aus pensioners. https://dspoverseas.proboards.com (hope posting link is allowed).

 

I was told the other day by a friend of a friend that he went back to oz and was at eligible age. He applied for OAP and was denied and they used the 2 year unwritten "rule". He appealed and was declined. He appealed again and again was declined so he went to the Ombudsman and he overturned Centrelink and appeals decisions and was granted the OAP and also back paid.

 

I have 20 months to eligible age but can not return just yet due to commitments and maybe not be able to return until after eligible date. I am hoping to get immediately (after processing time) and I don't intend to come back here.

I believe as long as you can establish residency, e.g. lease, utilities bill etc etc you shouldn't have a problem, and as for not returning overseas, then you won't have a problem, but if you do go overseas, you have to let them know, and if you have been there in Aus for the 2 years post the OAP portability shouldn't be a problem, but as I said before, if you return to Aus and then exit Aus again, don't be surprised if they cut the pension portability.

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1 hour ago, AussieBob18 said:

when living in Thailand do not spend more than 5-6 weeks in Australia without advising CLink of the same details.  I am not certain of the period, but if a pensioner residing overseas comes back into Aust for more than  'x'  weeks then they are deemed to have resided in Aust again (if no explanation).

This can only mean that Centrelink has found a loophole in the system and automatically sets you up as a returned resident when you do return for your short trip in Aus, oops sorry Mr XYZ but as you had returned and left again, we took it as if you had re-established your residency here in Aus again, therefore the portability on your pension was cancelled because the clock reset itself when you returned to Aus and left again.

 

We cannot do anything about that, the only thing you can do is come back and wait for 2 years before we can make it portable for you again, yes we understand it is difficult but that is the only avenue you have, naturally they would be hoping that you don't appeal, and they don't have to pay you the pension, thus making life difficult for you, after all, your just a number. 

 

The above said, it sounds like a numbers game, even if they fleece one pensioner of their pension, i.e. not returning to wait the 2 years or appeal and fight for their pension to get it made portabile again, then they have won, multiply that by x amount who would just throw up their arms saying that they are not going to waste the time and cost to return to appeal and fight it, then they have certainly found a loophole in the system saving them some serious coin.

 

This would mean that their objective is obvious, i.e. to force as many Xpats to lose their pension portability because of this loophole, and or to force Xpats to return and stay in Aus to spend the pension in house as opposed to overseas.

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17 hours ago, Lacessit said:

It's quite alarming, if true.

I know from experience Centrelink avoids putting things in writing, in case it is used against them. They blocked my PBS discount with a verbal statement, have never seen anything in writing.

IMO  that would be a bridge too far, even for Centrelink. Every other Western country allows pension portability, and there would be a blizzard of emails and letters to Federal MP's. Labor would have a field day.

Can you imagine Dutton or Tudge fronting Parliament, and trying to explain that policy? Even they don't have the brass balls for that.

Yes, true, but as I have said, I have not seen anything in writing, ut wouldn't put it past them, suffice to say, one would have to be vigilant when and if they return to advise Centrelink that they are only back for XYZ and will be departing on XYZ to put in a file note so that there is some kind of record on the system to beat any potential loophole waiting in the dark to stop your pension once you depart again.

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2 hours ago, AussieBob18 said:

Some got it once, some got it twice. Some bloke reckons he got it while living in LOS - maybe.

That Maybe possible If he Has a Registered address in Aus .

 

First $750 payment

The first $750 payment was announced on 12 March 2020 as part of an economic stimulus package in response to the coronavirus pandemic. Payments are to be made from 31 March 2020 to those who were in receipt of an eligible payment or who held an eligible concession card in the period 12 March 2020 to 13 April 2020.

Only one payment of $750 can be made to each eligible individual, regardless of how many eligible payments they receive or concession cards held. A person can be eligible for the $750 regardless of the rate of the eligible payment they receive. The individual must be residing in Australia to be eligible for the payment.

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On 9/14/2020 at 9:47 PM, Seeall said:

I heard they get a reduced rate part after some weeks or so..

Yes but it's not quite that simple,

 

Many Australians who qualify for the OAP but have been living outside Aust. long-term have to return for 2 years because:

 

1.  the OAP applicant must be in Australia the day they apply and

2. they must convince the authorities they are setting up a home in Australia.

 

On arrival back they can immediately claim the OAP (Pt 1. just above), nowadays it's processed quickly and smoothly and if they qualify the OAP starts immediately and backdated to the date of application, and the payments include things like the 'energy' allowance (currently around $14- per fortnight).

 

If these folks go abroad during the 2 years (the 2 years to 're-establish residency') their energy etc., allowances stop quickly but the OAP doesn't stop. When they return to Aust. the energy etc., allowances restart quickly (all of these changes sparked by the auto. links to immigration records).

 

After being back in Aust. for 2 years these folks now have 'portability' (payments continue for lifetime and the payments can be automatically transferred to a bank account abroad and the fees involved are very small, and no need to ever physically return to OZ).

 

But when the pensioner does return abroad to live (if that's their wish) the energy etc. allowance stops.

 

IMHO overall not too bad. 

 

 

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1 hour ago, 4MyEgo said:

This can only mean that Centrelink has found a loophole in the system and automatically sets you up as a returned resident when you do return for your short trip in Aus, oops sorry Mr XYZ but as you had returned and left again, we took it as if you had re-established your residency here in Aus again, therefore the portability on your pension was cancelled because the clock reset itself when you returned to Aus and left again.

 

We cannot do anything about that, the only thing you can do is come back and wait for 2 years before we can make it portable for you again, yes we understand it is difficult but that is the only avenue you have, naturally they would be hoping that you don't appeal, and they don't have to pay you the pension, thus making life difficult for you, after all, your just a number. 

 

The above said, it sounds like a numbers game, even if they fleece one pensioner of their pension, i.e. not returning to wait the 2 years or appeal and fight for their pension to get it made portabile again, then they have won, multiply that by x amount who would just throw up their arms saying that they are not going to waste the time and cost to return to appeal and fight it, then they have certainly found a loophole in the system saving them some serious coin.

 

This would mean that their objective is obvious, i.e. to force as many Xpats to lose their pension portability because of this loophole, and or to force Xpats to return and stay in Aus to spend the pension in house as opposed to overseas.

Good summary mate - and you are right about the main objective.  Plus there is another one.

As you may know I was in Canberra for a while and I know people there (that is how I found out).

Let me assure you that the management of CLink are extremely feminist anti-males. They see all of the older males who spend their time and overseas chasing lovely Asian ladies (or married to one) as a target - they hate us.

 

By the way, as far as I know, you have to be in Australia to lodge an appeal/compaint with AAT.  They want an Australian address and they want you to attend the hearing (if held).   There is some words on their website stating 'if you want to leave Australia during the review'. 

 

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2 hours ago, AussieBob18 said:

By the way, as far as I know, you have to be in Australia to lodge an appeal/compaint with AAT.  They want an Australian address and they want you to attend the hearing (if held). 

Thanks, however my plan is to return at least 2 years prior to the OAP age, and once I receive the OAP, I will then decide if we should return to Thailand.

 

The only thing that I believe would keep me away from Thailand would be the heavy smoke which is usually around the end of the rice and sugarcane harvest, "the burning season" which I will be keeping an eye on it as it's not too far away and I despise it, especially when having kids who have to stand for an hour at assembly, maybe I will take them to school just after assembly on bad days 🙂

  

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