The Government Age Pension pays you a regular income each fortnight. If you have retired and are eligible, it can work together with income you get from other sources. These may include your super and other savings or investments.
- You’re eligible if you’re 65-67 years, an Australian resident, and pass an income and assets test.
- You could even receive the Government Age Pension if you’re using super money in retirement.
- The Government Age Pension is different to an account-based pension from your super.
You may not be eligible for the Government Age Pension now, but over time your income and assets will change.
So it’s important to keep checking because you could become eligible.
1 Australian Institute of Health Welfare, March 2021
1. You need to reach a certain age
From 1 July 2023, the qualifying age for everyone will be 67.
In the meantime, the age will increase by six months, every six months until it reaches 67 years.
Refer to table below. Scroll table horizontally on mobile
|If you were born||Your pension age is|
|1 July 1952 to 31 December 1953||65 years and 6 months|
|1 January 1954 to 30 June 1955||66 years|
|1 July 1955 to 31 December 1956||66 years and 6 months|
|1 January 1957 onwards||67 years|
Why is the Government Age Pension age rising?
People are living longer in retirement, so the Government has been gradually increasing the pension age from 65 to 67. This is to encourage Australians to grow larger super balances so their money in retirement will last longer.
2. You need to pass an income and assets test
part from your age, the Government uses an income and assets test to see if you're eligible. The income test looks at all sources of income that you receive. This includes income from financial investments such as your super2.
The assets test looks at all your financial assets, aside from your home.
The test that results in the lower Government Age Pension payment is the one that is used to decide how much you receive. Find out more about the income and asset tests.
Government Age Pension amounts for singles and couples
Being in a couple affects how much you could get paid.
3. You must be an Australian resident
On the day you apply and for at least 10 years before.
2 Centrelink use rules to work out how much income your financial investments produce. These rules assume your assets earn a set percentage of income. This may be different to what they actually earn.
Every six months, we provide a report to Centrelink on how much you receive from your retirement income stream. If this amount changes, it could affect how much Government Age Pension you get.
When you receive the Government Age Pension, you also get a Pensioner Concession Card. This provides discounts on medicine, health and other Government services.
Depending on the state you live in, you could get discounts on gas, water, electricity, car registration and travel concessions. This means the Government Age Pension helps pay for, and lower, your expenses too.
The Commonwealth Seniors Health Card is available for eligible people. Even if you’re not eligible for the Government Age Pension, you may be eligible for this card. Some state and local governments offer extra health, transport, education and recreation concessions.
If you receive a Centrelink payment, like the Government Age Pension, and pay rent, you may qualify for rent assistance. How much you’ll receive depends on how much rent you pay.
If you own a home, you are not eligible.
Find out more about Rent Assistance at Services Australia.
This scheme offers eligible Australians a chance to supplement their existing retirement income with a tax-free fortnightly loan from the government.
This loan uses your house as security.
You are charged interest on the loan, but regular repayments are optional. You can stay in your house until it’s sold, with the loan repaid from the proceeds of the sale.
Find out more about the Home Equity Access Scheme at Services Australia.
If you’re an eligible pensioner, the Work Bonus can help you earn more income from working without reducing your Government Age Pension.
This means you can earn up to $300 a fortnight on top on your Government Age Pension.
Find out more about the Work Bonus at the Department of Social Services.
Where to next?
Attend a retirement webinar
Join our experts as they break down super and finances into easy-to-understand topics through our live webinar education series.
Make a downsizer contribution
You may be able to retire with more by using the sale of your home to boost your super balance and increase your income in retirement.
Speak to a financial planner
A financial planner can work through complex financial matters and help you create the right strategies to achieve your financial goals in retirement. They’ll explain any next steps, fees and charges before progressing.