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12.1.2 Importance of Obligations
Section 56 VEA - Automatic termination or rate reduction VEA - recipient complying with Section 54 obligations
Section 56A VEA - Automatic termination VEA - recipient not complying with Section 54 notification obligations
Section 56B VEA - Automatic rate reduction VEA - recipient not complying with Section 54 obligations
What is the purpose of obligations?
There are two reasons for the Department to be kept advised of a person's circumstances:
- so that it can ensure that the person is receiving the correct rate of pension, payment or the correct entitlement, and
- so that the Commonwealth purse is protected from outlaying funds to which a person is not entitled.
Why are obligations important?
Recipient responses to requests for information are important because the question of whether a person has or has not met his or her obligations under the VEA is basic to most decisions to reduce or cancel pension or payment from a date earlier than the date of determination. The end result of such a decision may be a recoverable overpayment.
Response to obligations determines the date of effect
The Commission has the power to vary, cancel or suspend a person's pension or payment. If an obligation has been imposed on a person under the VEA, and events occur that a result in a reduction in the person's pension or payment, or a loss of eligibility for the pension or paymnet, the legislation requires certain actions to be taken automatically. Whether the person has or has not met his or her obligations under s54 of the VEA determines the date that this action is taken, that is, the date of effect for:
- a variation to the rate of a person's pension,
- the suspension or cancellation of a payment, or
- the provision or withdrawal of fringe benefits or treatment benefits.