Eligibility & payment rates
Eligibility for Pension Supplement
You will get the supplement automatically if you are receiving:
- Age Pension
- Bereavement Allowance
- Carer Payment
- Disability Support Pension - except if you are aged under 21 and have no children
- Widow B Pension or
- Wife Pension
The Pension Supplement is also automatically paid to people over age pension age who are receiving:
- Parenting Payment
- Partner Allowance
- Special Benefit or
- Widow Allowance
Payment rates of Pension Supplement
Payment rates are updated on 20 March and 20 September each year.
Other payments that are rolled into the Pension Supplement:
- Pharmaceutical Allowance
- Utilities Allowance
- GST Supplement or
- Telephone Allowance equivalent to the higher rate for internet subscribers
These payments are no longer paid separately to Pension Supplement recipients, but their value is maintained in the supplement.
Maximum payment rates of Pension Supplement
|Family situation||Payment rate per fortnight|
|Couple||$48.20 each or $96.40 combined|
|Couple separated due to ill health||$63.90 each|
The Pension Supplement is separate and in addition to any increase in the pension rate.
Receiving a reduced rate payment
Part rate pensioners and other eligible income support recipients being paid a reduced rate will still receive the Pension Supplement or an equivalent amount if you are receiving a transitional rate.
The transitional rate of pension is a special rate of pension for people who did not benefit immediately from the changes to the pension system on 20 September 2009.
Transferring from transitional rate of pension to the new rules is not reversible. This should be taken into account if, for example, you are considering a brief change in employment income.
If you remain eligible for some income support payment under a means test, you will be paid at least the minimum amount of the Pension Supplement per fortnight.
The payment rates of Pension Supplement Minimum amount are updated on 20 March and 20 September each year.
Minimum payment rates of Pension Supplement
|Family situation||Payment rate per fortnight|
|Couple||$25.90 each or $51.80 combined|
|Couple separated due to ill health||$34.40 each|
Quarterly Pension Supplement
You can choose to receive part of the supplement, known as the minimum Pension Supplement amount, as a quarterly payment.
You may find this option useful for budgeting purposes.
The minimum amount accrues daily during the quarter and is paid with your regular payment after 20 March, 20 June, 20 September, and 20 December each year.
If your regular Centrelink payment is cancelled, any minimum amounts that have accrued for the quarter will be paid to you immediately.
If you choose the quarterly option, the amount of fortnightly supplement paid to you will be reduced.
The option to receive the minimum amount fortnightly or quarterly can be changed at any time. Let us know if you would like to receive it quarterly.
If you are not eligible for the Pension Supplement
If you are not eligible for the supplement but are eligible for Pharmaceutical Allowance, Telephone Allowance, or Utilities Allowance, you will continue to receive these other payments.
- Utilities Allowance will remain for Disability Support Pension recipients aged under 21 without children, and Widow and Partner Allowance recipients under age pension age
- Pharmaceutical Allowance will remain for all recipients of Parenting Payment single under age pension age, Disability Support Pension recipients aged under 21 without dependent children, and other eligible groups of income support recipients
- Telephone Allowance will remain for all recipients of Parenting Payment single under age pension age, people receiving Disability Support Pension aged under 21 without dependent children, and other eligible groups of income support recipients who have a phone connected in their or their partner’s name
Other benefits while receiving the Pension Supplement
If you qualify for the Pension Supplement, you may be entitled to other payments and benefits, such as:
You do not need to apply for the Pension Supplement
If you are eligible, it is included as part of your regular fortnightly income support payment.
Managing your payment
Cancelled payments where the Pension Supplement applied
If your regular Centrelink payment is cancelled, any minimum Pension Supplement amount that has accrued for the quarter will be paid to you immediately.
Pension Supplement while travelling outside Australia
You will continue to receive your Pension Supplement as long as you continue to receive your main payment such as Age Pension, Disability Support Pension and Carer Payment, but your rate may change at certain points.
If you are travelling overseas temporarily, after 6 weeks your Pension Supplement will reduce to the basic amount.
If you are leaving to live in another country, your Pension Supplement will reduce to the basic amount when you leave Australia.
Advising us of your travel outside Australia
Check your main payment type to find out whether you should tell us if you are leaving Australia.
What to do if your account is overdrawn
There is support available to help you manage your money if you have overdrawn your bank, building society or credit union account.
- Managing your money aims to get you in control of your money to help you achieve your goals, manage on a low income and identify where to go for urgent money help
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- Superannuation & retirement helps you get the most out of your super
- Investing guides you through the basic principles of investing and how to find a good financial adviser
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- Tools & resources provides handy tools, calculators, publications, audio files and quizzes including a budget planner, retirement planner and mobile apps