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Traviz

Australian Pension & the two year non portability rule for expats.

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Traviz

Hi Guys.

 

Just looking for some current tips, advice or experiences other expat Aussies who have done this;

or can offer advice to help me decide whether it's worth it or not to return to Australia and apply for the age pension.

I was born in Australia, lived and worked there for 44 years till self funded retirement at 60.

 

My situation:

I've lived in the Davao Del Norte region with my young Filipina wife for nearly five years now and we have two young children (four & a half years and two months old, both girls). We are very happy.

 

To tell the truth, I don't really want to go back to Australia for two years on my own, as my life & family is here now; there's nothing for me in Australia and two years is a long time at my age. I own no property there, and only have a meager amount invested.

 

We previously lived quite well here on the interest income. Well, that was the case until about a year ago when the Aussie $ dropped about 25% in value and has stayed there. :(

 

We survived, but the killer coming up, for me, is that my 5 year term deposits that previously were locked at a very healthy rate of nearly 7% are now only offering about half that amount. This means around the middle of this year my interest income will go down another 50%!! :(  Unfortunately, it's not enough and we can't live on it. 

 

I don't want my wife to work here as it's not worth it with the wages being so pathetic; but, if I take her and the kids with me to Australia, their Visas fees (partner, child, agent fees) come in around %15,000.00 plus airfares taxes and all the other expenses!

 

It would cost me more to take my family to Australia that I would be paid in the Old Age Pension for the two years we would be there! That is ridiculous, and maybe the way they've planned it with their atrocious Visa costs.

 

Anyway, is there any known way around this ridiculous two year virtual jail term in Australia for Aussie Expats not wanting to stay in Australia for the two year before it becomes "Portable''?  

 

P.M. me if you like.

 

 

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woodchopper

r u 65 yet mate?

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woodchopper

if u r 65 allready,,i would call centrelink international on 1800 1 611 0046. they will set u straight on what you HAVE to do!

 

i do not believe there are any tricks or persuasion u can use,,the rules are pretty much cut and dried now!

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Traviz

Sixty five this August. I can't use phones as I was born deaf. I've done as much research as possible already on the Human Services Site, and trawling the internet blogs for personal experiences people have had, but not much is there that helps me. This two year rule is an evil stinker to those Aussies that have paid their dues, but can't afford to live decently in Australia because the costs are so high.

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woodchopper

without going into too many details,,i helped a fellow 2 weeks ago(aust 72) who had neglected to go age pension at 65 and was cutoff here because he exceeded his 28 days on the DSP.

 

again without going into detail,,i had a personal convo with the Centrelink intnl officer and he put that man on age pension over the fone and reinstated his pension!

 

i realise u r far from cebu but possibly u could find an aussie man there to speak on your behalf to C/Link? (at least get u straight on what could happen?)

 

ur longterm disability might work in your favour?

Edited by woodchopper
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mikewright

Mate, a couple of things here.  Firstly, your children are entitled to Australian citizenship. Have you considered having them registered with the Australian embassy? Inexpensive process, and then they would be entitled to Australian passports, no visas required to enter Australia. Otherwise you are paying visa fees of $3,440 for two dependents.  That should bring your visa fees and migration agent's  fees down considerably.

 

Secondly, I'm guessing from your comments that you want to do the best thing for your wife as well. Unless there are unusual circumstances involved, as you have been in a long-term relationship and legally married with children from the relationship, it should not be too a complicated matter to get a visa for your wife, and for permanent residence to be granted quickly (without the need for Agent's fees). The Government information booklet sets out the procedure here - https://www.border.gov.au/Forms/Documents/1127.pdf

 

As for the cost of visas etc being more than you would receive in the two years from your pension, is there a reason your wife could not work to supplement your income for those two years?

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KennyF

The OA pension while living abroad is $810 bucks a fortnight or $42,000 in 2 years.

It is quite a lot higher if you live in Oz.

 

During the 2 year stint, you can leave Oz for up to 13 weeks at a time without affecting the 2 years.

This means that you could come back to the RP 6 times in that 2 years.

So of the 104 weeks, you could have 78 in the RP

But they do stop your pension while you're out of the country.

 

Centrelink are hooked up to immigration.

They know immediately when you leave/return to Oz.

 

KonC (been there, done that)

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Salty Dog

If I understand your OP, you have enough invested to have been living off of just the interest earned from it. Maybe it's time to start using some of the principal. After all, that's what you saved it for. Of course you may want to leave it untouched so the family will have funds to live on after you're gone. It's a fine balancing act many of us deal with.

 

In my case I've moved my wife to the USA where she can get a job, become a citizen and of course eventually get my Social Security after I'm long gone. Does your country pay your family this old age pension after you're gone? If so do they have to be in Australia to get it?

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oztony

 

 

Does your country pay your family this old age pension after you're gone?

 

No

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Salty Dog

No

So you have free medical for all but a wife with children is on her own when her husband dies. Or is there other ways they are provided for like housing and food subsidies?

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woodchopper

my experiences with C/Link Intnl have allways been quite cordial and helpfull,,they are based in Tasmania.

 

i dont believe they are committed to hoodwinking anyone and explain things quite well!

 

on 1 occasion i requested a senior staffer because of the nature of my enquiry and i recieved very helpfull and informative advices from an obviously mature and competant staffer.

 

turning to the embassy manila might get u a couple of not so helpfull fone calls etc,,but not much more,,

 

its far better to proceed with the aforementioned,, with the full true facts on your working life in australia,,your full pecuniary interests,,and given your stated disability,,a competent speaking friend to "waltz" u thru a talk with the above,,you would then know your available options,,thats my 2 bobs worth,,for what its worth,,in finality!

 

Good Luck

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Forex

I'm in a similar situation with low interest rates and the crash in the AUD.

 

However instead of investing in term deposits for which you are obliged to pay tax, I put all my funds into superannuation. I have an allocated pension which allows me to draw down 5% of my investment per annum. If your super fund is making less than 5% your capital is reduced accordingly. The beauty of this approach is that if you are over 60 you pay zero tax.

 

The OA pension is means tested so if you have other assets besides your family home, this will be taken into account and the pension will be reduced. There is a threshold that allows to have income from other investments but I'm not sure what that is. Others may know.

 

I'm not in a position to go back to Oz either and will rely on my investments both in Oz and here in PI to carry me through. But the first thing I would do in your situation is to get your funds into superannuation. Age 67 is the cut off so you still have time. You can invest up to $560k in one go but you may have to pay 15% contribution tax.

 

If you intend to go this way I also suggest you see a good financial adviser who will be able to determine the best approach, including options for your OA pension.

 

Looks like a trip back to Oz is your best bet to sort this out. 

Edited by Forex
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oztony

These guy's trade info on who has done what and how... it may be worth a look ....  http://dspoverseas.proboards.com/

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darrener

The OA pension while living abroad is $810 bucks a fortnight or $42,000 in 2 years.

It is quite a lot higher if you live in Oz.

 

During the 2 year stint, you can leave Oz for up to 13 weeks at a time without affecting the 2 years.

This means that you could come back to the RP 6 times in that 2 years.

So of the 104 weeks, you could have 78 in the RP

But they do stop your pension while you're out of the country.

 

Centrelink are hooked up to immigration.

They know immediately when you leave/return to Oz.

 

KonC (been there, done that)

Does this mean  that for the 2 years prior to my reaching pension age the same 78 weeks would apply ?

If so, one would only need to be apart from one's  family for a total of 6 months in the 2 years prior to reaching government pensionable age.... without losing any government pension.

If this is the case then the 2 year rule is not nearly so draconian as it first appears, besides my missus would probably be glad of the break..... :yahoo:

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contraman

Its a Can-O-Worms

If you read this it may not pay to go back to OZ   :yahoo:

 

Recipients overseas immediately before 1 January 2015 are subject to the rules under which they departed until they return to Australia.

 

 

Source

Edited by contraman
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