Social Security Point-in-Time Service Updates

Wednesday 22 May 2019 @ 12.01 p.m.

The Social Security Point-in-Time Service has been updated to include the Social Services and Other Legislation Amendment (Supporting Retirement Incomes) Act 2019 (Cth) (Act 5 of 2019), the Social Services Legislation Amendment (Energy Assistance Payment) Act 2019 (Cth) (Act 28 of 2019), the Treatment Benefits (Special Access) (Consequential Amendments and Transitional Provisions) Act 2019 (Cth) (Act 42 of 2019) and the Social Security (Administration) Amendment (Income Management and Cashless Welfare) Act 2019 (Cth) (Act 49 of 2019).

Act 5 of 2019

Schedule 1 establishes new means test rules to accommodate the development of new innovative income streams. The Schedule also amends the current rules for lifetime income streams to create fairer, more equitable means test outcomes.

Schedule 2 increases the Work Bonus to $300 per fortnight and extends the application of the Work Bonus to income earned from remunerative work that involves personal exertion, including self-employment and work undertaken by contractors or consultants.

Schedule 3 expands the Pension Loans Scheme (PLS) to provide more Australians of Age Pension age (for social security recipients), income support supplement qualifying age or service pension age (for Veterans’ Affairs recipients), with access to the Scheme.

Schedule 4 makes technical amendments to simplify the Social Security Act 1991 and confirms that income support recipients over Age Pension age qualify for the employment nil rate period.

Act 28 of 2019

This Act will pay a one-off energy assistance payment to recipients of the age pension, disability support pension, carer payment, farm household allowance, parenting payment, AUSTUDY, ABSTUDY Living Allowance, double orphan pension, newstart allowance, partner allowance, sickness allowance, special benefit, widow allowance, widow pension B, wife pension and youth allowance, together with recipients of various veterans’ payments, who are payable and residing in Australia on 2 April 2019.    

Act 42 of 2019

This Act makes amendments as a consequence of the Treatment Benefits (Special Access) Act 2019.  The Act would also provide for transitional provisions in relation to claims made under the Treatment Benefits (Special Access) Act 2019 and the consequential amendments of a number of Acts.

Act 49 of 2019

Under current provisions, the cashless debit card trial is due to end on 30 June 2019 in the Ceduna region (South Australia), East Kimberley region (Western Australia) and Goldfields region (Western Australia). In the Bundaberg and Hervey Bay region (Queensland), the cashless debit card is being rolled out progressively from 29 January 2019 and is due to end on 30 June 2020. 

This Act extends the cashless debit card trials in three sites, and extends the sunset date for the income management program across the Cape York Welfare Reform communities, to 30 June 2020.

These amendments have been updated in the Point-in-Time Social Security Service current to 21 May 2019. (NB: Subscription required).

If you are not already a subscriber to this or other Point-in-Time Services then please contact us to find out more or to take a free trial