The Impact of Lump Sum Payments on Centrelink and Pension
Posted on 27 oct 2016
My name is Wally David. I’m a proud husband and father and I advise people on money for a living. I’ve been doing this money thing for over a decade and have a keen passion for educating people on their options by simplifying information into everyday language and cutting to the chase. I try and avoid fancy words and jargon, and present information in a way that helps you make smart decisions with your hard-earned.
If you receive a lump sum of more than $2,000, they want to know about it within 14 days so that they can adjust your payment, if required.
2. How is the lump sum payment assessed?
Many of the common lump sum payments are generally not treated as income. These include such things as:
• An inheritance from Great-Aunt Thelma;
• Lump sum withdrawals from your super (also referred to as commutations);
• Insurance payouts for damages to property; and
• For those that enjoy the odd flutter on Melbourne Cup day, single or occasional gambling wins!
This is where is gets a little tricky.
If you spend the funds on items that are not normally assessed by Centrelink, such as repairs and/or improvements around your home, you should be in the clear. By that I mean that these should not change the value of your assets that are assessed. However, you still need to let our friends at Centrelink know about the payment and how you used the money.
Investing the lump sum into the stock market or other financial investments will also be assessed, both as an asset and under the deeming rules for income. If you’re thinking about adding to your property empire with the proceeds, different rules apply again.
And finally, if the intention is to gift some funds to the grand-kids, this can also alter your payment. For more information on gifting.
I’ve touched on some of the more common sources of lump sum payments. But there are certain types of payments that can be considered as income with potentially a greater impact on your pension. Some examples include distributions from a family trust or private company, or any bonuses you receive from the boss at work.
Wally David, CFP®