Pension rates payable outside Australia

We’ll pay your pension differently if you live outside Australia on a permanent or long term basis.

When we make payments

If you live or travel outside Australia long term, you’ll get regular payments every 4 weeks.

March 2020 to January 2021 payments schedule

Date we'll issue your payment Date you'll get your direct deposit payment Date you'll get your cheque payment Period the payment covers

12 March 2020

18 March 2020

1 April 2020

13 February to 11 March 2020

7 April 2020

13 April 2020

27 April 2020

12 March to 8 April 2020

7 May 2020

13 May 2020

27 May 2020

9 April to 6 May 2020

3 June 2020

9 June 2020

23 June 2020

7 May to 3 June 2020

2 July 2020

8 July 2020

22 July 2020

4 June to 1 July 2020

29 July 2020

6 August 2020

20 August 2020

2 July to 29 July 2020

27 August 2020

2 September 2020

16 September 2020

30 July to 26 August 2020

24 September 2020

30 September 2020

6 October 2020

27 August to 23 September 2020

22 October 2020

28 October 2020

9 November 2020

24 September 2020 to 21 October 2020

19 November 2020

25 November 2020

9 December 2020

22 October to 18 November 2020

17 December 2020

23 December 2020

6 January 2021

19 November 2020 to 16 December 2020

14 January 2021

20 January 2021

3 February 2021

17 December 2020 to 13 January  2021

Remember, if you’re paid by cheque, there may be mail delays over peak holiday periods.

What the pension rates are while outside Australia

This table shows the maximum basic rate and Basic Pension Supplement rate when you’re living outside Australia. Your rate may be less depending on your situation.

These figures are a guide only and are effective from 20 March 2020.

Rates A$ amount per year single A$ amount per year couple both eligible A$ amount per year couple one eligible partner A$ amount per year couple separated due to ill health
Maximum basic rate $22,375.60 $33,732.40 $16,866.20 $22,375.60
Basic Pension Supplement rate $629.20 $1,034.80 $517.40 $629.20
Total $23,004.80 $34,767.20 $17,383.60 $23,004.80

What allowable income is while outside Australia

This table shows your allowable income if you’re on a full or a part pension.

Pension type A$ amount per year single A$ amount per year combined couple both eligible A$ amount per year combined couple one eligible partner A$ amount per year combined couple separated due to ill health
Full pension Up to
$4,524
Up to
$8,008
Up to
$8,008
Up to
$8,008
Part pension Less than
$50,533.60
Less than
$77,542.40
Less than
$77,542.40
Less than
$100,027.20

What allowable assets are while outside Australia

You and your partner can have assets up to a certain amount before your payment rate changes.

Pension type A$ amount per year single A$ amount per year combined couple both eligible A$ amount per year combined couple one eligible partner A$ amount per year combined couple separated due to ill health
Full pension - homeowner

Up to
$263,250

Up to
$394,500
Up to
$394,500
Up to
$394,500
Full pension - non-homeowner Up to
$473,750
Up to
$605,000
Up to
$605,000
Up to
$605,000
Part pension - homeowner Less than
$558,250
Less than
$840,500
Less than
$840,500
Less than
$984,500
Part pension - non-homeowner Less than
$768,750
Less than
$1,051,000
Less than
$1,051,000
Less than
$1,195,000

What the deeming rates and thresholds are while outside Australia

Deeming is a set of rules used to work out the income created from your financial assets. It assumes these assets earn a set rate of income, no matter what they really earn.

Deeming rates and thresholds A$ amount single A$ amount per year couple both eligible A$ amount per year couple one eligible partner A$ amount per year couple separated due to ill health
Threshold $51,800 $86,200 $86,200 $86,200
Rate below threshold 0.25% 0.25% 0.25% 0.25%
Rate above threshold 2.25% 2.25% 2.25% 2.25%

How we calculate your rate of payment

We calculate your payment rate under both the income and assets tests. We apply the test that results in the lower rate or nil rate. We deem some assets to earn income. There are special rules for other types of income. Read more about what we regard as income and assets for the purpose of calculating your rate of pension.

There’s no income or assets test if you’re permanently blind.

Reduced rate

You may get a reduced rate of pension based on how long you were an Australian resident.

Transitional rate

Transitional rules ensured pensioners weren’t worse off after the introduction of the 20 September 2009 pension income test. People getting a pension on 19 September 2009 will get the transitional rate. They will get it until it’s no longer higher that the current income tested rate.

You’re not eligible for the Work Bonus if you get the transitional rate.

Work Bonus

The Work Bonus applies if you’re Age Pension age. It allows you to earn up to $300 every 2 weeks without it affecting your pension.

If you earn less than $300, you can build up an employment income bank with unused amounts. We then offset these credits in future fortnights if you earn more than $300. The maximum Work Bonus you can accrue is currently $7,800.

You can’t get Work Bonus if you get Parenting Payment single.

Read more about Work Bonus.

How we make payments

We'll pay you outside Australia by direct deposit. In exceptional circumstances we may pay you by cheque.

Direct deposit payments

We can put your payment straight into your bank account. This can be a bank account held in or outside Australia. Your payment will be available within 6 days of issue.

If you don’t get your payment within 10 days, contact your bank. If your bank can’t help you, contact us.

If we’re paying into an Australian bank account, we’ll pay you in Australian dollars.

If we’re paying into a bank account outside Australia, we’ll pay you in local currency or US dollars. This will depend on what country you’re living in.

You'll need to complete an International bank account form for any banks outside Australia.

Cheque payments

Cheques will be in local currency or in US dollars. This will depend on the country you’re living in.

You should get it in the post 14 to 20 days after we issue it. We use international and local mail systems to send your cheque. Delays due to the mail system are out of our control.

If you don’t get your cheque within 20 days, we can cancel it and send a new one. You’ll need to allow time for the new cheque to arrive.

If a cheque arrives after we cancel it, don’t cash it or put it into your account. If you do, your bank may charge you a fee.

Banking your cheque

When you deposit your cheque, it’ll need to clear before you can access the funds.

This could take:

  • around 2 weeks if the cheque is in local currency
  • up to 4 weeks for US dollar cheques.

In most countries we can pay pensions directly into bank accounts. We prefer this method of payment, as it is safe, quick and reliable.

How someone can deal with us on your behalf

You can nominate a person or organisation outside Australia to act on your behalf with us.

Fill in the Authorising a person or organisation to enquire or act on your behalf (outside Australia) form.

Find out more about someone to deal with us on your behalf.

Page last updated: 1 May 2020