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Social security

Assets test

Section: 9.6

The assets test is used to reduce the amount of age pension that a person is entitled to receive where the value of their assets counted for assets test purposes (generally all assets other than the principal home) exceeds a certain threshold. A person's age pension entitlement will reduce to nil on a sliding scale based on the amount by which the person's assessable assets exceed the threshold.

To determine the actual rate of pension payable, the full pension rate is reduced by $1.50 per fortnight (taper rate) for each $1,000 by which assets counted for assets test purposes exceed the relevant full pension threshold shown in the following table.

1 January 2017 assets test changes

From 1 January 2017, the lower assets test thresholds for pensions will increase to:

  • $250,000 for single homeowners and $450,000 for single non-homeowners
  • $375,000 for couple homeowners and $575,000 for couple non-homeowners.

Also from 1 January 2017, the assets test taper rate (the rate at which the maximum pension reduces) will increase from $1.50 per fortnight to $3.00 per fortnight per
$1,000 of assets over the lower threshold.

Last modified: Tuesday, May 2, 2017