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VOICEOVER

Australian Aged Pension

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Sorry to be the bearer of Bad News, my wife and I are both australian old age pensioners, we were leaving australia on the 21st of september last year on a 6 month tour of asia and europe, we were informed by immigration at Brisbane if we stayed out of australia for more than 13 weeks we would both lose our age pension and have to wait a further 3 months before being eligable to apply again,so we cut short our trip and returned after 12 weeks,when we returned on the 3rd of december we contacted a solicitor to check up on this new regulation, uptil now all we are getting is conflicting informationas soon as we hear something definite in writing we will post it here Nignoy

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You should contact the local office of Centrelink, the web site is not very explicit. Thailand does not have any social security agreements with Australia.You must be in Australia to apply when you are 65 for age {retirement) pension.

Full pension is 25 years in Australia part pension after 10 years. You can get the payments credited to your Australian bank account. However you must notify Centrelink if you are going overseas and how long you will be away.

Everyones circumstances are different so one should contact Centrelink, in person, and state your case.

There are special requirements for Australian citizens returning to Australia to claim an age pension after living or working overseas for a number of years.

If you have problems with Centrelink staff take the matter up with your local Federal Member their office might be able to solve it with a telephone call.

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I thought the 13 week rule applied to other Centrelink payments such as the dole, not aged pensions. I would take the advice of immigration officers at the airport with a large grain of salt.

There are also other rules as well as being in Australia on the day you lodge. You must have lived in Australia for a minimum number of years during your working life- I think 20 years - and paid tax during that time. It's all on the Centrelink website.

Edited by Goinghomesoon

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Did I read somewhere on T.V. a while back that the Age Pension (65+) for a male, almost cuts out if you are married to a younger lady who is still considered able to wok and provide family income.

I think a male member quoted that he was living in Thailand and had his pension almost zeroed when he advised Centrelink that he was married in the above circumstance.

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Although I am a couple of years away from the OAP I asked Centerlink the same question in November. I was told that they are happy to pay an OAP into an Australian a/c and that it did not matter where I was overseas. The 13 week time frame seems to be for those with Centerlink payments such as Disability, unemployment....etc.

Having said this...those of you who know Centerlink know that different answers come from different offices for the same question...

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regardless, you soon find out one way or another. Immigration records are usually linked to you Tax File number (which is what happens when they zap your passport on the way out). In the past I've seen one or two people who's payments have stopped when they've been out of the country of an extended period of time.

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regardless, you soon find out one way or another. Immigration records are usually linked to you Tax File number (which is what happens when they zap your passport on the way out). In the past I've seen one or two people who's payments have stopped when they've been out of the country of an extended period of time.

Centrelink use data matching and can access information on other Australian government departments including immigration and the ATO. This is why you always notify them before you leave Australia. Remember we are only referring to age (retirement) pensions here.

If you are married and your wife is living in Australia with you and she is below retirement age you may only get about 80% of the full single pension. That may change if you both move overseas.

Pays to check with Centrelink first.

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I thought the 13 week rule applied to other Centrelink payments such as the dole, not aged pensions. I would take the advice of immigration officers at the airport with a large grain of salt.

There are also other rules as well as being in Australia on the day you lodge. You must have lived in Australia for a minimum number of years during your working life- I think 20 years - and paid tax during that time. It's all on the Centrelink website.

We both receive aged pension as previously stated, , on the 9th of december we were called into centrelink Caboolture for an interview, to prove that we actually did return to australia, we were informed that as aged pensioners we have to inform centrelink when leaving australia and if leaving for over 13 weeks financial penalties could apply,Nignoy

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Many thanks to Nignoy and everyone for their info. Much appreciated and I'll attempt to phone Centrelink in Australia on Monday. Fully expect to be "put on hold" and/or have to select from a dozen "options" while trying to get a Real Live Public Servant to talk with.

Will let you know the results as it looks as though there are many other Aussie Expats in a similar situation. My first posting on Thaivisa.com and I'm overwhelmed at the response.

heers,

Voiceover.

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If you are penalised.....the rate of pension you receive is linked to the cost of living in the country where you are staying. In Thailand that means you will get stuff all.

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I had always assumed that the Australian OAP was 'means tested'. Is this the case and if so, at what income level does it cut off?

I retired to Thailand in 1997 at the age of 45. My income is from investments in Australia. On the advice of my accountant, I declared myself 'non-resident' in Australia and now pay 10% flat tax on earnings there. That is a lot less than I was paying.

Should I live to the age of 65, (highly unlikly with my lifestyle), how poor will I need to be to receive an old age pension or part there of?

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