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Restitution Payments - Germany and Austria
Last amended: 9 December 2008
Treatment of German restitution payments
German restitution payments are not treated as income for DVA purposes.
A recipient of a German age, invalid and/or disability pension, qualifies for assistance on the basis of contributions made during their working life. As a concession to people who were unable to contribute to these schemes because of persecution, the German government 'deems periods of contribution' to have been paid. A German pension paid under this arrangement is exempt under the income test. In these cases the whole payment is disregarded, as it would be impossible to calculate and disregard that portion of the payment made for deemed periods of contribution.
The German Government makes restitution payments to victims of Nazi persecution for a number of reasons including loss of health, property and professional advancement.
Partner entitlements to a restitution payment - Germany
Partner entitlements to a restitution payment are not treated as income for DVA purposes.
In some cases the partner of a person who was receiving a restitution payment may be entitled to a once off death benefit or a widow's/widower's pension.
Identifying German restitution payments
German restitution payments include:
- specific restitution payments made under the BUNDESENTSCHADIGUNGSGESTZ (BEG), and
- general German pensions where a person is deemed to have made contributions to the pensions scheme.
A pensioner receiving restitution payment should have documentation relating to the payment. The following words identify payment for restitution or persecution:
- WIEDERGUTMACHUNG RENTE, or
- ZUSTELL BEVOLLM.
These pensions are paid by one of the following government authorities or agencies:
- BUNDESVERSICHERUNGSANSTALT FUR ANGESTELLTE (BFA) - The Federal Insurance Institute for Salaries Employees,
- LANDSVERSICHERUNGS - The State Insurance Institute,
- REICHSVERSICHERUNGS - The Central Pay Office, and
- RENTENRECHNUNGS STELLE - The Pension Accounts Office.
Documentation involved - German restitution payments
If a person is receiving a pension from one of the above agencies, documentation must be carefully checked, including translations if necessary, to establish whether 'deemed periods of contribution' have been granted to the person. If they cannot provide such documentation, they must either:
- write to the German paying authority, or
- request details in writing from:
- MINISTERIUM der FINANZEN des LANDER RHEINLAND PFALZ
KAISER FRIEDRICHSTRASSE 1
6500 MAINZ, or
- INNENMINISTER des LANDES NORDRHEIN WESTFALEN
4000 DUSSELDORF 1
The German Embassy and Consulates in Australia do not maintain records that would allow them to give advice on whether a pension is paid with 'deemed periods of contribution'.
Treatment of Austrian restitution payments
Austrian restitution payments, which are made by the Austrian Government to victims of Nazi persecution, are not treated as income for DVA purposes.
Identifying Austrian restitution payments
Austrian restitution payments are usually paid by two agencies:
- PENSIONSVERSICHERUNGSANSTALT DER ARBEITER, and
- PENSIONSVERSICHERUNGSANSTALT DER ANGESTELLTEN.
A restitution payment received because of persecution can be identified by the words:
- OPFERUSSORGUNGGESEZT (Victims Care Act),
- KRIEGOPFERVERSORGUNGGESEZT (War Victims Care Act), or
- VERFOLGUNG (Persecution).
Documentation involved - Austrian restitution payments
If an applicant or pensioner is receiving an Austrian restitution payment, documentation must be carefully checked, including translations if necessary. If they cannot provide such documentation, they must write to either:
- PENSIONSVERSICHERUNGSANSTALT DER ANGESTELLTEN
1021 VIENNA, PO. BOX 1000, or
- PENSIONVERSICHERUNGSANSTALT DER ARBEITER
1092 VIENNA, PO. BOX 218
The Austrian Embassy and Consulates in Australia do not retain records that would allow them to give advice on whether a person's payment is paid because of persecution.
The Department of Veterans' Affairs.