Income support pensions are means-tested payments, designed to assist with everyday living costs. They include:
From 1 January 2015, income deemed to be received from superannuation account-based pensions will also be included in the income test.
The Service Pension is a means tested income support payment that provides a regular income for people with limited means. There are three different types of service pensions — that is, age, invalidity and partner service.
The Age Service Pension provides income support for Australian, Commonwealth and allied veterans and mariners. It is similar in many ways to the age pension paid by the Department of Human Services (Centrelink) but is available five years earlier, in recognition of the effects of eligible service.
The Invalidity Service Pension provides income support to Australian, Commonwealth and allied veterans and mariners. It is paid to veterans considered permanently incapacitated for work due to medical factors, and who are not yet entitled to an age pension.
The Partner Service Pension provides income support for a veteran's partner. If a veteran is receiving an Age or an Invalidity Service Pension, his or her partner does not automatically become eligible, they must meet the criteria for a Partner Service Pension.
The Social Security Age Pension can be paid by DVA to eligible veterans where they do not meet the criteria for a service pension. If the veteran is receiving a Disability Pension from DVA, DVA can act as an agent for the Department of Human Services to pay the Social Security Age Pension, simplifying matters for the veteran.
Veteran Payment provides interim income support for persons who have lodged a claim for a mental health condition under either the Military, Rehabilitation and Compensation Act 2004 or the Safety, Rehabilitation and Compensation (Defence-related Claims) Act 1988, are under Age Pension age and are incapable of working for more than eight hours per week. The Veteran Payment is subject to income and asset limits similar to that of Service Pension and Age Pension.
Partners are also eligible for Veteran Payment whilst the veteran is receiving the payment.
Rent Assistance is payable to support veterans who rent their accommodation, subject to minimum rent amounts.
There are ancillary allowances which may be payable depending on an individual's circumstances.
The Defence Force Income Support Allowance (DFISA) is an income support payment paid by DVA. It may be paid to veterans or their partners when their Social Security Income Support Payment is reduced or not payable because of a payment of adjusted Disability Pension from DVA.
Rent Assistance is payable to support pensioners who rent their accommodation, subject to minimum rent amounts.
Remote Area Allowance is payable to income support pensioners who live in designated remote areas of Australia.
Supplements are available to assist with the cost everyday living.
The Pension Supplement is a fortnightly amount to help with the cost of prescriptions, telephone and internet connections, energy, water and sewerage.
The Veterans Supplement is a fortnightly amount paid to some veterans, war widow/ers and orphans who do not receive an income support payment from DVA or Centrelink.
The Income Support Supplement provides income support for war widow(er)s in addition to their War Widow(er)'s Pension. The War Widow(er)'s Pension is a compensation type payment and not means tested, but the Income Support Supplement is means tested.
The Energy Supplement is part of the Household Assistance Package, which provides ongoing financial assistance to certain members of the veteran and defence community.
The Energy Assistance Payment is a one-off payment to help eligible clients with rising energy costs and will be paid automatically in the week commencing 3 July 2017.
To be eligible you must have been receiving one of the following payments on 20 June 2017:
The Energy Assistance Payment is:
Eligible DHS customers also receive the payment; see Department of Human Services (DHS).
The MRCA and SRCA Supplements are fortnightly payments to assist with the costs of living and the cost of pharmaceuticals.
DVA Gold Card, Pensioner Concession Card (PCC) and Commonwealth Seniors Health Card (CSHC) holders may be eligible for concessions for a variety of goods and services, such as public transport, rates and utilities.
The eligibility criteria and nature of these concessions are determined by the individual provider or relevant state/local government, not DVA so it is important to contact the organisation offering the concession to confirm your eligibility.
The concessions offered for the same product or service can also vary between different states, the DVA Factsheets provide an overview of the concessions available in each state and territory.
In addition to the DVA Factsheets, more information about state and territory government concessions is available on Australia.gov.au.
For more information about health and other care services available to DVA health card holders (including Gold, White and Orange Cards), refer to DVA Health Cards.
For further information regarding the Commonwealth Seniors' Health Cards (CSHC) view the concession cards section within Managing Your Pension.
CSHCs are available to eligible veterans, partners, war widows and widowers who do not receive either an income support pension from DVA or a pension or benefit from DHS Centrelink and who meet an annual adjusted income test.
Veterans' Pharmaceutical Reimbursement Scheme automatically reimburses eligible veterans for out-of-pocket costs associated with the concessional pharmaceutical co-payment. The second annual payment under the scheme was made in the last week of March 2014 for out-of-pocket costs incurred in 2013. Future payments will be made in March of each year for the previous calendar year.
To make a claim, you can download a claim form.
You can also write to us at:
Department of Veterans' AffairsGPO Box 9998Brisbane QLD 4001
Claims for pensions or benefits are considered by DVA on a case-by-case basis using evidence of your service and medical history.
You can speak to a DVA officer about available benefits, by contacting your local Veterans' Access Network (VAN) office.
DVA's Outreach Programme also provides information sessions on DVA benefits and entitlements to veterans in certain outer metropolitan and regional areas.