We have quickly learned that this topic provides the most confusion with our readers and people that we have met.
Unfortunately, most staff at Services Australia seem to be unfamiliar with the rules when it comes to Australians choosing to live permanently overseas. We have seen them time and again give inaccurate advice.
You will lose a small part of the overall pension. Usually, this amount is very minor in comparison to the overall Age Pension that you would receive.
The Age Pension that you will receive will still be dependant on the assets and incomes tests as per living in Australia.
However, there are further rules that may reduce the amount of Age Pension you will receive depending on the length of time you have been a resident of Australia.
There are rules also surrounding when and how you can apply for the Age Pension. For example, you must be living in Australia when you apply for the pension.
In saying this, for a great majority of Australians the rules will not be a hindrance should you wish to live overseas in Retirement.
According to the Federal Department of Social Services, there are estimated to be about 90,000 Australians who live overseas whilst still receiving their Age Pension entitlements. This figure is expected to grow substantially over the next decade.
Currently, the largest number are of Italian heritage, followed closely by the Greeks then New Zealanders. And this would make sense. After WWII and throughout the 50’s and 60’s, Australia saw a large influx of migrants from those countries. They have since retired and are now enjoying some of their retirement years with their extended families in ‘the old country’, where no doubt their money goes far further.
The next large wave of new Australians came from Asia throughout the 70’s, 80’s and 90’s. We will see many of these migrants also choosing to live back in their home countries, and still being able to claim the Age Pension when their time to retire comes.
In addition, the generation that is retiring now is the first generation that has holidayed and travelled extensively abroad. They understand what various places overseas has to offer, both in terms of cost benefits as well as quality of life. Retiring overseas, even for only a few years has seen strong growth over the last decade, and this is expected to grow substantially over the coming decade.
Being able to receive the Age Pension could be a significant benefit when retiring to a cost-effective part of the world, where even the smallest of dollars can go so much further.
It enables many to enjoy a better lifestyle while keeping more of their personally investment funds and superannuation intact for longer.
We suggest that wherever possible that you review your Age Pension entitlements before you retire overseas.If you are already living overseas, you can still apply for and receive the Age Pension, however, there are a few more rules that you will need to be aware of.
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