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What Income Will the Authorities Consider When They Examine the Income and Assets Form?

The authorities prescribed a rule by which every person, who was moving into residential aged care facilities for the first time, would need to undergo an assessment of their income and assets. This rule came into effect from 01 July 2014. Officers of the Department of Veterans’ Affairs or the Department of Human Services would be responsible for carrying out this assessment. Only after undergoing this assessment would the individuals qualify for receiving government assistance pertaining to their care and accommodation expenses. The authorities would use the assessment for determining:

-        The amount of government assistance that you will receive for your aged care and accommodation expenses and,

-        The amount that you will need to pay towards these expenses

To undergo this assessment, you will need to fill out a form titled ‘Permanent Residential Aged Care – Request for a Combined Assets and Income Assessment (SA457)’. After filling the form, you will need to return it to the Department of Veterans’ Affairs or the Department of Human Services. It is worth highlighting that you can request an assessment before you enter an aged care or care respite facility. The initial fee notification advice that you receive will remain valid for 120 days.

It is worth mentioning that the income specified on the form is not the same as your taxable income. The income that the officers will typically assess include:

-        Income support payments from the Australian Government e.g. the Age Pension, Income Support Supplement etc.

-        Deemed income from financial investments

-        Deemed income from excess gifting

-        Net income from a rental property

-        Net income from a business (including farms)

-        War Widow or Widower Pensions (including some disability pensions)

-        Superannuation and overseas pensions and,

-        Family trust distributions or dividends