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3.4.6 Leaving Residential Aged Care Ageing in place

Residents who ‘age in place’ cannot switch from paying a bond to paying the accommodation charge. This is because the resident can only enter into an accommodation bond or charge agreement on their initial entry to that residential aged care facility. Refund of bond

On departure from an aged care facility, the accommodation bond, less the retained amounts, must be refunded to the resident or their estate within 14 days. If the provider does not refund the bond balance on the day of departure, they must pay interest on the amount refundable until it is repaid in full. Moving to another low level care facility

If a resident moves within 28 days of initial entry to another low level residential care facility, the second service provider cannot ask for a bond higher than the amount refunded by the first service provider. Only the balance of the five year retention period will carry over to the new facility. Moving from low to high level care

If a resident moves from a low level to a high level residential care facility within 28 days of leaving the first facility, the amount of accommodation payment to be charged is determined by private agreement between the resident and the service provider. The resident may:

  • have the balance of the bond fully refunded and pay the daily accommodation charge at the new facility, or
  • transfer the balance of the bond to the new service provider. In this case only the balance (if any) of the five year retention period will carry over to the new facility. The maximum amount which the new service provider can charge is the balance of the bond. Re-entering care after 28 days

The arrangements regarding no higher bond than the refunded amount, paying an accommodation charge, or rolling over the bond balance do not apply if a resident re-enters care after a break of more than 28 days. The person will be subject to the post 1 July 2014 rules and a combined income and assets assessment is also required. Periods of hospital or social leave are not counted towards the 28 days between leaving one aged care facility and entering another.

An accommodation charge is an additional daily fee, which is paid by person's residing in ACAT approved permanent High Level Care.

It is paid in addition to the standard resident daily care fee and any additional income tested fee, which may apply.

Accommodation charges are payable for as long as a resident remains in care.  For those residents who entered care prior to 1 July 2004 the accommodation charge is limited to a maximum five years.


See Also: - defintion of ACAT - definition of 'High Level Care'



An accommodation charge only applies to those persons entering an aged care facility prior to 1 July 2014.



An accommodation bond is an amount of money paid by Low Level Care and Extra Service Care residents in an aged care facility. An accommodation bond may be paid as a lump sum, or by periodic payments, or a combination of both lump sum and periodic payments.

The provider can deduct a monthly retention amount, for a maximum of 5 years, from the accommodation bond. The monthly retention amount is a fixed amount specified in the accommodation agreement and cannot exceed the capped maximum amount applicable at the time of entry to the facility. The provider also retains any interest derived from the bond.

The balance of the lump sum accommodation bond is refundable to the resident or their estate on departure.  The refunded accommodation bond balance is an assessable asset.

If there is a liability under the accommodation bond agreement for the bond to be paid wholly, or partly by periodic payments and the former principal home is rented out, then both the former home and the rental income are exempt from the income and assets tests.