This Digest was prepared for debate. It reflects the legislation as
introduced and does not canvass subsequent amendments. This Digest
does not have any official legal status. Other sources should be
consulted to determine the subsequent official status of the
Contact Officer & Copyright Details
Social Security and Veterans' Entitlements Legislation
Amendment (Miscellaneous Matters) Bill 2000
Date Introduced: 16 March 2000
House: House of Representatives
Portfolio: Family and Community Services
Commencement: Royal Assent.
However, the measures contained in the Bill have differing
application dates which are dealt within the Main Provisions
section of this Digest.
- standardise and centralise provisions in the Social
Security Act 1991 relating to domestic residence requirements
and overseas portability of social security payments and other
- complete a regime for providing compensation to social security
payment recipients in respect of the Goods and Services Tax
- generalise an existing requirement for claimants and recipients
to obtain comparable social security payments from foreign
- simplify domestic residence requirements, particularly
exemptions for refugees and holders of certain classes of
- provide for data matching in social security payments (using
tax file numbers), and
- remedy numbering anomalies in social security related
Presence and Portability
Presence in Australia
Many of the pensions and allowances (and pension
rate calculators) in the Social Security Act 1991 contain
a requirement that the claimant or recipient must be 'in
Some pensions and allowances allow temporary
absences. Thus, a person may be overseas for a limited period
whilst still being considered to be 'in Australia' and may
therefore continue to qualify (subject to other requirements such
as the 'activity test').(2)
International Portability Provisions
The remaining payments are largely subject to
'international portability' rules that allow a recipient to be paid
or a claimant to qualify while s/he is overseas. Some payments are
made 'portable' by the operation of the Social Security
(International Agreements) Act 1999 ('agreement pensions and
allowances').(3) Others are made 'portable' by specific
provisions in the Social Security Act 1991 ('non-agreement
pensions and allowances').
General 'portability' was introduced in
1973.(4) When it was introduced, 'portability' applied
to all pensions and allowances except where the allowance was by
way of supplementary assistance(5) or where the claim
was based on short residence (described below).(6) There
was provision for the Director General to issue a determination
exempting a recipient from the short residence requirement. Other
than these provisions, and regulations implementing international
social security agreements, no other provision was made for
Since 1973 amendments have been made to the
general portability provisions to introduce requirements relating
to 'Australian working life residence', 'proportional portability',
'departure certificates' and 'post departure review' and to limit
or cease the application of the 'portability' rules to certain
payments. The provisions regarding international social security
agreements have also been formalised into legislation.
These features of the current administrative
regime are described below.
Agreement Pensions and Allowances
The Social Security (International Agreements)
Act gives effect to agreements between Australia and foreign
countries regarding reciprocity in social security matters. It
relaxes residence requirements for parenting payment consistently
with the terms of any scheduled agreement.(7) It also
provides for the 'portability' of pensions or allowances in
accordance with these agreements.(8) Thus, an
'international agreement pension or allowance' continues to be
payable even if the recipient is overseas. International agreements
generally take precedence over other qualification and payment
provisions in the Social Security Act.
Non-Agreement Pensions and Allowances
Part 4.2 of the Social Security Act applies
'overseas portability' rules to certain pensions and
allowances.(9) It also provides for certain pensions and
allowances,(10) which have been automatically cancelled
or for which payment has automatically ceased,(11) to be
'transferred' if the recipient qualifies for a specific 'portable'
pension or allowance.(12)
Essentially the 'portable' pensions and
- age pension
- bereavement allowance
- disability support pension
- wife pension (and special needs wife pension), and
- widow B pension (and special needs widow B pension).
Varying Portability Conditions
Different portability conditions apply to each
of the pensions and allowances. Age pension and bereavement
allowance are completely 'portable' and are thus unaffected by the
recipient's leaving Australia, provided s/he complies with
requirements discussed below. Disability support pension is
completely 'portable' but only if the recipient is severely
disabled (if s/he is not severely disabled the pension is only
'portable' for 12 months).(13) In general, pensions for
wives and widows(14) are 'portable' for 12
months,(15) although this period may be extended while
the recipient is in a specified foreign country(16) and
in some circumstances these pensions are 'portable' for an
Departure Certificates and Post-Departure
Portability also depends on the claimant or
recipient meeting certain requirements regarding departure
certificates.(18) In general, a claimant or recipient
who is absent from Australia for more than 6 months ceases to
qualify for any pension or allowance unless s/he has a departure
certificate.(19) A claimant or recipient who proposes to
leave Australia may obtain a departure certificate by notifying the
Department prior to leaving Australia.(20)
Alternatively, a claimant or recipient who leaves Australia without
a departure certificate may have his or her qualification continued
or restored if s/he responds to a notice issued by the
Secretary.(21) Notwithstanding these requirements, a
claimant or recipient may have his or her qualification continued
if the Secretary considers that there are circumstances that were
beyond the person's control that 'justify the person continuing to
be qualified' during a specified period.(22)
Portability is limited where a claim is based on
short residence.(23) Where a person lodges a claim after
regaining Australian residency and leaves Australia within 12
months, while s/he may qualify for a pension or allowance, it is
not payable while s/he is overseas.(24)
Generally, where a recipient has been overseas
for more than 12 months, while they may continue to qualify for a
'portable' pension or allowance, the payment rate is reduced to the
proportion of the time in the recipient's working life during which
they were a resident in Australia ('Australian working life
Other Provisions relating to Overseas
'Overseas portability' is also dealt with in the
context of specific pensions and allowances. Thus, specific
'portability' rules appear in provisions relating to carer
payment,(25) widow allowance,(26) parenting
payment,(27) newstart allowance,(28) mature
age allowance and mature age partner allowance (pre and post 30
June 1986), sickness allowance, special benefit, special needs wife
and special needs widow B pension.
In addition, specific provisions within the Act
relax certain qualification requirements to allow members of the
Reserve Forces to attend training courses outside
Rent Assistance and Qualifying PP Child
While a pension or allowance may be portable,
certain incidental benefits may not be. For example, rent
assistance is generally only payable where the recipient is in
Australia.(30) Equally, while a parenting payment
recipient may leave Australia, if their dependent child is away
from Australia for more than 26 weeks they are liable to lose their
Pension Bonuses and Retirement
Assistance for Farmers
One element of the Government's Tax Reform
Package involved increasing pension rates by 4% to compensate for
the effects of the GST. The A New Tax System (Compensation
Measures Legislation Amendment) Act 1999 largely achieved this
objective. However, it did not amend certain provisions dealing
with the calculation of 'pension bonuses'(32) or
'retirement assistance for farmers'.(33)
Under the Social Security (Administration)
Act 1999 the Secretary has the power to require a claimant or
recipient of certain pensions and allowances(34) or
their partner to take reasonable action to obtain a 'comparable
foreign payment' from a 'CFP country'.(35) If s/he fails
to take 'reasonable action' the Secretary may reject a
claim(36) or cancel the payment.(37)
A 'comparable foreign payment' is a payment
which is similar to a payment under the Social Security Act. 'CFP
countries' are listed in the definitions to the Act. They are the
countries with which Australia has an international social security
Australian Residence and
Qualifying Residence Exemption
The Social Security Act defines an 'Australian
resident' to include a person who holds a 'special purpose visa'
and 'who is likely to remain permanently in
Australia'.(38) The Act also provides a 'qualifying
residence exemption' which exempts certain claimants from residence
requirements on the basis that they are refugees, etc. or if they
hold certain kinds of visas. In particular, the Act exempts special
benefit claimants who hold certain classes of visas issued prior to
1994 ('exempt residents').(39) These classes of visa
were issued to persons claiming political asylum following the
incident at Tiananmen square.(40)
Bereavement allowance provides some support for
claimants who do not qualify for parenting payment. It also
provides some support for women who do not qualify for widow
pension(41) or widow B pension.(42) It is
payable until another pension or benefit becomes payable (ie the
claimant makes a claim and qualifies for another payment).
Gender Equity: Pensions for
Wives and Widows
The Social Security Act currently contains a
number of female-specific payments which contain qualification
criteria based on circumstances of partners or former partners. For
example, a person qualifies for wife pension if she is a member of
a couple and her partner receives age pension, disability support
pension or a rehabilitation allowance.(43) Similarly, a
person qualifies for widow B pension if she is over a certain age,
does not qualify for parenting payment, has been divorced and has
been an Australian resident for 10 years.(44)
These pensions are being phased out. Wife
pension must have been claimed prior to 30 June 1995. Widow B
pension must have been claimed prior to 20 March
1997.(45) Since 1996 the move has been towards female
partners of recipients being required to claim and qualify for
payments in their own right, eg. newstart allowance, parenting
payment (partnered), partner allowance. The move recognised that a
female-specific payment no longer reflected the changing role of
women in society and in the workforce (there has never been a
widower pension for males). It accords with the general move
towards gender equity across payments.
One of the major themes in the 1999-2000 Budget
for the Family and Community Services Portfolio was the need for
greater data matching between relevant agencies. The Government
announced improvements to data matching using tax file numbers
(TFNs).(46) Data matching involves the exchange of
personal information (including TFNs) between relevant agencies
that may otherwise have constituted a breach of the Privacy Act
Beneficiaries Leaving Australia
Schedule 1, Part 1 deals with
Items 1-107 amend the
'international portability' provisions described above by removing
most of the 'presence in Australia' requirements and corresponding
components of the administrative regime (departure certificates,
notices regarding absences) and by centralising the 'international
portability' rules to a single part of the Act.
Items 16 and
17 preserve the qualification of parenting payment
children in accordance with the 'portability' rules applying to
parenting payment recipients overseas. (This allows parenting
payments made in respect of a child to continue if the parent's
portability period is extended).
Items 19 and
32 effectively preserve the presence requirement
in the 'activity test'. In order to qualify, a recipient will have
to be 'actively seeking, and willing to undertake, paid work in
Items 82, 87, 90, 92, 96, 101,
104 and 107 provide that, while a
recipient need not be 'in Australia' to qualify for a pension or
allowance, rent assistance may only be paid on properties in
Australia. Qualification and application for special needs pension
is already restricted as the pension is being phased out.
Item 57 places a sunset clause
on the grant of special needs pensions. These will no longer be
granted after 20 September 2000.
Items 108-130 establish the new
centralised international portability regime. The regime consists
- Items 108-110 - Preliminary: These items
contain an express intention that the Social Security
(International Agreements) Act overrides the part and definitions
- eligible medical treatment: treatment that cannot be
obtained in Australia.
- entitled person: the category of women whose wife or
widow pensions are currently 'portable' for an indefinite
- reserve service: training camp for one of the reserve
forces (proposed s 1212).
- acute family crisis: absence which the Secretary is
satisfied is for the purpose of visiting a family member who is
critical ill or hospitalised with a serious illness or who is
facing a life threatening situation (proposed s
- humanitarian purpose: absence which the Secretary is
satisfied is for the purpose of attending custody or other legal
proceedings, for adoption purposes or for other purposes prescribed
in regulations (proposed s 1212B).
- temporary absence: absence which does not involve a
change in Australian residence (proposed s
- Items 111-113 - General Portability
Provisions: These items provide for a general regime for
portability of social security payments. Division 2,
Subdivision A aims to give effect to a table describing
the portability of various social security payments. The table
preserves and expands upon the rules that currently apply:
- 'presence in Australia' pensions and allowances:
temporary absences are generally permitted for 26 weeks, but for
youth, newstart, sickness and special benefit, absences are only
permitted in respect of eligible medical treatment, acute family
crises and humanitarian purposes.
- 'temporary absence' pensions and allowances: temporary
absences for 26 weeks.
- 'portable' pensions and allowances: any absence is
- 'entitled persons': any absence is permitted.
Proposed s 1216 limits the
portability of remote area allowance, rent assistance, incentive
allowance and pharmaceutical allowance to a maximum period of 26
Division 2, Subdivision B seeks
to provide exemptions to the portability restrictions for austudy
recipients studying overseas (proposed s 1218),
recipients of parenting payment, youth allowance, austudy,
newstart, mature age allowance or mature age partner allowance for
reserve service overseas (proposed s 1218A) and
any recipient where the Secretary is satisfied that
certain exceptional circumstances exist (proposed s
- Items 114-120 - Short Residence: These items
extend the residence period for claims based on short residence
from 12 months to 2 years.(47) They also remove a
general discretion allowing the Secretary to exempt a claimant or
recipient from the short residence restrictions where the absence
from Australia could not have been foreseen.
- Items 121-125 - Proportionality: Item
121 brings the operation of the 'proportional portability'
rules (described earlier) forward from 12 months to 26 weeks.
Item 123 rectifies an anomaly in the 'proportional
portability' regime which would have allowed recipients to receive
an inflated pension or allowance rate because their 'Australian
working life residence' exceeded the theoretical limit of 300
months or 25 years. Item 125 removes provisions
which benefited couples having different 'Australian working life
- Item 126-130 - Savings: Item
126 ensures that new portability rules do not apply to
claimants and recipients who are overseas at the commencement
date(49) until they return to Australia. It also
provides that the original portability provisions, except certain
provisions including those relating to indefinitely portable
pensions for wives and widows(50) continue to apply to
these persons, and limits the operation of the extended short
residence rules to pensions granted after the commencement
Schedule 2, Part 3 makes
corresponding housekeeping amendments to the Social Security
(Administration) Act. They relate to decisions regarding departure
Schedule 3 makes amendments to
the Veterans' Entitlements Act 1986 providing for overseas
portability of various entitlements. Allowances such as rent
assistance, pharmaceutical allowance and telephone allowance are
'portable' (in the sense implied by the above amendments) for a
maximum period of 26 weeks. Allowance for FA children is only
'portable' in respect of absences by those children for a period of
Schedule 8 makes amendments to
the A New Tax System (Family Assistance) Act 1999
providing for 'overseas portability' of family tax benefit and
child care benefit for non-residents who hold visas determined by
the Minister in relation to special benefit. It applies the
centralised 'overseas portability' rules in the Social Security Act
to an absence by these non-residents. The portability period is 26
weeks which is equivalent to the standard portability period for
recipients of family tax benefit.(51) There are no
particular portability rules in the A New Tax System (Family
Assistance) Act for child care benefit.
Schedule 9 corrects an anomaly
in the 'proportional portability' provisions of the Social Security
(International Agreements) Act. It is a similar anomaly addressed
by Schedule 1, Part 1, item 123.
Schedule 1, Part 1 (except for
items 71, 72, and 123) and Schedule 2, Part 3
commence on 20 September 2000.
Schedule 1, Part 1,
items 71 and 72 commence on 20
September 2000 or immediately following the commencement of
Schedule 1, item 4 of the A New Tax System (Family Assistance
and Related Measures) Act 2000 (currently a bill), whichever
is the later.(52)
Schedule 3 commences on Royal
Schedule 8 commences on 20
September 2000 or immediately following the commencement of
Schedule 1 of the A New Tax System (Compensation Measures
Legislation Amendment) Act 1999.
Schedule 1, Item 123 and
Schedule 9 commence on 1 August 2000.
Pension Bonus and Retirement Assistance
Schedule 1, Part 2 and
Part 3 rectify the GST omissions described above
relating to pension bonuses and retirement assistance for farmers.
They commence immediately after the commencement of Schedule 1 of
the A New Tax System (Compensation Measures Legislation
Amendment) Act 1999.
Overseas Entitlements and Social
Schedule 1, Part 4 removes
references in the Social Security Act to 'CFP countries' so that an
obligation to obtain a 'comparable foreign payment' is not limited
to countries with which Australia has an international social
security agreement. Item 133 provides the
framework for a 'social security amnesty' to encourage recipients
to disclose the existence of a previously undisclosed 'comparable
foreign payment'. It prevents recovery of overpayments during the
period 20 September 2000 - 19 January 2001.
Schedule 2, Part 2 similarly
broadens the scope in the Social Security (Administration) Act from
'CFP countries' to any 'foreign countries'.
Both Schedule 1, Part 4 and
Schedule 2, Part 2 commence on 20 September
Schedule 1, Part 5 contains
housekeeping amendments with respect to the definition of
Australian residence and qualification for certain pensions and
- Items 134-135 & 142-144 - exempt
residents: These items remove the 'qualifying residence
exemption' for 'exempt residents' as '[m]ost categories of visa
listed under 'exempt resident' are no longer issued, and the
Department of Immigration and Multicultural Affairs advises that
none of those granted are still valid'.(53)
- Items 137 to 139 -
special purpose visas: These items remove references to
'special purpose visas' on the basis that these visas only allow
holders to remain in Australia for short periods and for special
purposes. Thus, the holders are not 'likely to remain permanently
in Australia' for the purposes of the Social Security
- Item 141 & 145 & Items 156-163- legislative
reference to visas: Item 141 seeks to remove any
references to visa classes in a provision relating to 'qualifying
residence exemption' (s 7(6AA)) leaving the classes to be specified
by ministerial determination. This will allow visa classes to be
added or subtracted without amendment of the Act (the intention is
that the existing specified classes will be incorporated in the
first determination made under the amended section). Item
145 makes these determinations disallowable instruments
ensuring that they are subject to Parliamentary
Items 156-162 remove references
to specific visa classes in the context of special
benefit(56) (which effectively operate as a form of
'qualifying residence exemption') also leaving them to be specified
by ministerial determination. Item 163 makes these
determinations disallowable instruments.
- Item 150 & 151 - bereavement allowance:
These items relax residence requirements for bereavement allowance
so that they are consistent with the current 104 week residence
requirement for comparable pensions: for example, parenting payment
(single),(57) age pension (where a partner has
died)(58) and newly arrived
- Item 149 - newly arrived residents'
waiting periods (carer's payment): This item inserts a
general reference to visa classes (specified by ministerial
determination) into the list of exemptions applying to waiting
periods for newly arrived residents.(60)
Schedule 6 amends the
Health Insurance Act 1973 to remove references to 'exempt
resident' in relation to waiting periods for 'disadvantaged low
income residents'. It substitutes a more general reference to the
(amended) 'qualifying residence exemption' in the Social Security
Act (see items 134 & 135 above). Thus, the category of persons
exempted from the waiting period is broadened from refugees, etc.
and 'exempt residents' to refugees, etc.(61) and the
holders of classes of visas determined by the Minister.
[Schedule 6 repeals
subparagraphs 5BA(4)(b)(iv), (v) and (vi) which relate to 'exempt
residents'. But it does not does not repeal subparagraphs
5BA(4)(b)(i), (ii) and (iii) which relate to refugees, etc. Both of
these categories of people have a 'qualifying residence exemption'
under the Social Security Act (ss 7(6) and 7(6AA)). Thus,
subparagraphs 5BA(4)(b)(i), (ii) and (iii) would seem already to be
covered by the new reference to the more general 'qualifying
residence exemption'. No reason is given for this overlap.]
Both Schedule 1, Part 5 and
Schedule 6 commence on 20 September 2000.
Schedule 2, Part 1 inserts a
new section 204A into the Social Security Administration Act. This
empowers the Secretary to obtain information, including tax file
numbers (TFNs), from the Commissioner of Taxation for the purpose
of establishing or verifying a claimant's or recipient's
qualification, payment rate or entitlement to be paid.
Schedule 4 amends the
Income Tax Assessment Act 1936 to include a reference to s
204A in the data matching provisions.
Schedule 5 updates a
cross-reference in the Taxation Administration Act 1953 to
these amended provisions.
All of these provisions commence on 1 July
Schedule 7 remedies two
renumbering errors in the Social Security (Administration and
International Agreements) (Consequential Amendments) Act 1999.
It commences immediately after the commencement of Schedule 5 of
the Further 1998 Budget Measures Legislation Amendment (Social
Security) Act 1999.(62)
Schedule 10 remedies
renumbering errors in the Further 1998 Budget Measures
Legislation (Social Security) Act 1999. It is taken to have
commenced immediately before the commencement of Schedule 2, items
A few specific comments may be made about the
amendments in the Bill:
- Presence in Australia - Activity Test: As indicated,
while the residence requirements are being relaxed, the activity
test is being strengthened such that recipients must be looking for
work 'in Australia'. It is unclear whether the new activity test
will require that recipients be looking for work while 'in
Australia' or whether it will permit recipients to be overseas but
looking for work 'in Australia'.(64)
- Proportional Portability - pensioner couples and Australian
Working Life Residence: As indicated, currently a member (or
former member) of a couple is presumed to have an equal Australian
Working Life Residence to their existing (or former) partner for
the purposes of calculating rates of payment for certain
pensions.(65) Schedule 1, Part 1, Item
125 removes this equivalence apparently on the basis that
it is 'redundant'.
Clearly, this will disadvantage some recipients
if they stay overseas beyond 26 weeks (at which time the
proportional portability payment rules apply: Schedule 1,
Part 1, Item 121). There appear to be no winners in this
circumstance. Nor does there seem to be a particular justification
for considering the current equivalence 'redundant' apart from the
general principle of gender 'equity' (or 'neutrality') across
payments discussed above in the context of wife pension and widow
- Portability - 'entitled persons' in the transition
period: As indicated, currently certain recipients of certain
wife and widow pensions ('entitled persons') have an unlimited
portability period.(66) Clearly, the same rule will
apply under the new regime.(67)
However, it appears that the arrangements will
not apply to recipients caught by the savings
provisions.(68) Thus, recipients of these pensions who
are overseas at 20 September 2000 and who remain overseas will lose
their entitlement to unlimited portability and will only benefit
from the general 'temporary absence' and 'overseas portability'
provisions while they remain overseas. If they have been overseas
for longer than a year they may lose their entitlement to their
- Qualifying Residence - Health
Insurance Act: As indicated, Schedule 6 appears to leave an
overlap between provisions in the Social Security Act relating to
'qualifying residence exemption' and provisions in the Health
- For example, s 14(3) (remote area allowance), ss 198(4),
198AC(1), 198AC(2) and 198AC(2)(c) (carer payment), s
408BA(2)(e)(ii) (widow allowance), s 500(1)(c) (parenting payment),
s 540(d) (youth allowance), s 568(c) (austudy), ss 593(1A),
593(1B)(b)(iii), 593(2)(g)(iii) (newstart allowance), s
660XBA(1)(f) (mature age allowance), s 660XBI(1)(c) (mature age
partner allowance), s 660YBA(8) (mature age allowance - post 30
June 1986), ss 666(1)(h) and 667(f)(d) (sickness allowance), s
729(2)(fa) (special benefit), s 771HA(1)(D) (partner allowance), s
953(1)(e), 953(2)(e), 954(1)(e), 957(1), 957(2)(c), 957(2) (carer
allowance), ss 1035(1)(a)(iv), 1035(1)(b)(iv), 1035(1)(ba)(v),
1035(1)(c)(iii), 1035(1)(ca)(iii), 1035(1)(d)(iii) (mobility
allowance), s 1061G(1) (advance pharmaceutical allowance) and
1061R(a) (telephone allowance).
- For example, absences for 3 months: s408BA(4)
(widow allowance), s 513(1B) (jobsearch, subject to the
activity test), s 593(1A) (newstart, subject to the
activity test), s 674 (sickness allowance), s 660YBA(9)
(mature age allowance - post 30 June 1986); 13
weeks: s 729(5) (special benefit, in exceptional
circumstances); 26 weeks: ss 660XBA(3)
(mature age allowance), 660XBI(2) (mature age partner allowance)
and s 500(1)(c) (parenting payment). In addition, while a family
allowance recipient is not required to be in Australia if s/he or
his or her dependent child is away from Australia for more than
3 years, the allowance ceases to be payable: ss
836 & 840. The same rules apply to the double orphan pension (s
999(1)(a)) and similar rules apply to the family tax payment (s
- International Agreements were originally given legislative
effect by being included in a Schedule to the Social Security Act.
The Social Security (International Agreements) Act consolidated
existing social security international agreements into a separate
Act: see Bills Digest No. 2 1999-2000 at http://www.aph.gov.au/library/pubs/bd/1999-2000/2000Bd002.htm
- Social Services Act (No.2) 1973. The portability
provisions commenced on 8 May 1973.
- Social Services Act, s 83AC.
- Social Services Act, s 83AD.
- S 1208A.
- S 1209.
- Excluding all benefits, pensions and allowances for which
presence in Australia is an essential qualifying condition (see
note 1 above) (s 1211) and except for: carer payment, pension PP
(single) and rehabilitation allowance (s 1212(2)); and wife
pension, widow B pension, special needs wife pension and special
needs widow B pension where the recipient has never been an
Australian resident (s 1215).
- Age pension, disability support pension, wife pension, pension
PP [parenting payment] (single), bereavement allowance, widow B
pension, mature age allowance under Part 2.12A, mature age partner
allowance or service pension.
- For example, a pension may cease to be payable to a recipient
because another social security pension or benefit or a service
pension becomes payable to him or her: s 71A (age pension); s 136
(disability support pension). A pension may also cease to be
payable if the recipient fails to respond to notification
requirement: s 73 (Age); s 138 (DSP).
- Age pension, disability support pension (where the recipient is
severely disabled), wife pension, bereavement allowance or widow B
- Ss 1213A(2) and 1213A(3).
- Wife Pension, Widow B Pension, Special Needs Wife Pension and
Special Needs Widow B Pension.
- S 1216.
- S 1216A
- That is, where the recipient has been an Australia resident for
at least 10 years, is in receipt of a widow B pension because she
was legally married and her husband has died or was or is the
partner of a man who was the subject of compensation arising out of
inquiry into matters known as the 'Greek conspiracy': s 1216B.
- Ss 1218, 1218A, 1218B, 1218C and 1219: see s 1213(2).
- S 1218(2).
- S 1219.
- The qualification is continued if the claimant or
recipient responds within 3 months (s 1218B) and it is
restored if s/he responds after 3 months but before 12
months (s 1218C).
- S1218A. The specified period may not exceed 18 months.
- S 1220: see s 1213(2).
- S 1220.
- S 198AB.
- S 408BA(2).
- S 500A.
- S 593(1).
- For example: exemptions in respect of newstart activity test (s
593(3)), qualification for mature age allowance (s 660XBH) or
mature age partner allowance (s 660XBI(2)).
- For example, s 1064-D1(e) (age, disability support, wife
pensions and carer payment), s 1066-D1 (sole parent pension,
bereavement allowance and widow B pension), s 1066A-EA2(g)
(disability support pension, under 18), s 1066A-EB2(h) (disability
support pension, over 18), s 1067G-D1(f) (youth allowance), s
1068-F1(d) (widow allowance, newstart allowance (18 or over),
sickness allowance (18 or over), partner allowance and mature age
allowance), s 1068A-D1(e) (parenting payment (single)), s
1068B-F1(f) (parenting payment (partnered)).
- This is because a child born overseas ceases to qualify as a
'PP child' if they are absent from Australia for more than 26
- Where a person qualifies for age pension, but defers claiming
it s/he may receive a single lump-sum bonus: see s 92A. See the
Department of Family and Community Services Guide ('the
Guide') at http://www.facs.gov.au/guide/ssguide/11p130.htm
- The retirement assistance for farmers scheme (RAFS) 'allows
older farmers to transfer ownership of the family farm to the
younger generation, retire and gain access to Age. The Scheme
offers a 3 year moratorium on the gifting provisions, which allows
retiring farmers to gift farm(s) valued at up to $500,000 without
affecting their eligibility for [the age pension]': See the
Guide at http://www.facs.gov.au/guide/ssguide/12380.htm
- Age pension, bereavement allowance, carer payment, disability
support pension, parenting payment, special needs age pension,
special needs disability support pension, special needs widow B
pension, special needs wife pension, widow allowance, widow B
pension, wife pension: s 66(1).
- S 66.
- S 40.
- S 82.
- S 7(2).
- S 7(6C). These include transitional (temporary) visas issued
pursuant to the Migration Reform (Transitional Provisions)
Regulations to persons who had the following class of visa or entry
permit prior to 1 September 1994: 437 (PRC (temporary)), 784
(Domestic Protection (temporary)), 820 (Extended eligibility
(spouse)). They also include the following class of visa held prior
to 1 February 1993: 781 (Refugee (restricted)), and 783 (PRC
(temporary) and a class of temporary visas that are declared under
s 25A to be relevant visas for the purposes of s 7(6C).
- The visas were created in 1989 and expired in 1993 when the
holders were able to make a claim for permanent residence. They
allowed PRC nationals who were in Australia prior to 20 June 1989
to remain in Australia and to qualify for social security payments.
This qualification continued until after 1993 while their permanent
residence status was being determined. Most of this group held four
year temporary entry permits which expired on 30 June 1994: Joint
Standing Committee on Migration Regulations, Australia's
Refugee and Humanitarian System: Achieving a balance between refuge
and control, August 1992, pp 187-194; Prime Minister, 'Joint
Statement by the Prime Minister and the Minister for Immigration,
Local Government and Ethnic Affairs', Media Release, 27
June 1990; Senator Nick Bolkus, 'Government Decision on PRC
Nationals', Media Release, 1 November 1993.
- For example, because they are not over 50.
- For example, because the claim was not lodged before 20 March
1997 or because they were neither legally married or a member of a
couple for 3 years.
- S 147.
- S 362.
- S 362A.
- Information and Research Services, Budget Features
1999-2000, May 1999.
- Thus, a claimant or recipient who has regained Australia
residency will not be paid for the period they are overseas if they
leave Australia within 2 years.
- Points 1221-B5-B8 of Pension Portability Rate Calculator,
Module B - Australian Working Life Residence provided that if a
member or former member of a couple had a shorter Australian
working life residence than their partner, they would be deemed to
have an equal Australian working life residence for the purpose of
calculating their payment rate.
- 20 September 2000.
- See note 14 above.
- S 62.
- Item 4 of the A New Tax System (Family Assistance and Related
Measures) Bill 2000 makes amendments to the A New Tax System
(Family Assistance Act) 1999 to create a list of exceptions
relating to an individual's qualification as an FTB child. The
amendments will commence immediately after the commencement of the
A New Tax System (Family Assistance Act) 1999 which will
commence after the last of the following provisions has
- section 1-2 of the A New Tax System (Goods and Services
Tax) Act 1999;
- section 2 of the A New Tax System (Goods and Services Tax
Imposition-Excise) Act 1999;
- section 2 of the A New Tax System (Goods and Services Tax
Imposition-Customs) Act 1999;
- section 2 of the A New Tax System (Goods and Services Tax
Imposition-General) Act 1999;
- section 2 of the A New Tax System (Goods and Services Tax
Administration) Act 1999.
- Explanatory Memorandum, p 25.
- See the text accompanying note 38 above.
- Under s 46A of the Acts Interpretation Act 1901
- S 729(2)(f) and ss 739A(1), (2), (3)(b), (4)(b), and (6).
- S 315(1)(D)(iii).
- S 43(1A).
- S 201AA.
- The list of exemptions was created by the Further 1998
Budget Measures Legislation Amendment (social Security) Act
1999, Schedule 5, Item 6.
- That is refugees, former refugees, and family members of
refugees and former refugees.
- Schedule 5 commences on a day fixed by proclamation, or, if
Schedule 5 does not commence within 6 months beginning on the day
the Act receives Royal Assent, from the first day after the end of
- That is, 20 March 2000.
- Recipients would still be obliged to demonstrate that they are
'actively seeking, and willing to undertake, paid work'. But it may
be possible to do so whilst outside Australia.
- Age pension, disability support pension, wife pension, sole
parent pension, bereavement allowance or widow B pension.
- See note 17 above.
- See the discussion above of items 111-113.
- As indicated, item 130 provides that the
amendment to 1216B (ie its repeal) applies to all persons including
persons who were overseas prior to 20 September 2000 and had not
returned to Australia at a time after 20 September 2000.
4 April 2000
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