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7.1 Interaction Between VEA and SRCA
The interaction between the VEA and the SRCA is complex and it is important that a dependant who is entitled to claim under both acts is fully informed of the benefits available under each legislation.
Other benefits, such as the provision of a Gold Card and access to the VCES for dependent children are to be fully explained to the dependant.
Additional Death Benefits
Wherever possible an experienced officer should personally visit dependants who may be eligible for benefits under both the VEA and SRCA. Additional Death Benefits (ADB) paid under the Defence Act 1903 are exempt from the definition of compensation from another source when applying the offsetting provisions.
It is possible for a dependant to accept the ADB without accepting the lump sum payable under the SRCA. This option is normally only taken by younger widow/er's. With the introduction of the MRCA, the incidence and possibility of a person being eligible for an ADB decreases.
Income Support Supplement
Income Support Supplement (ISS) is a compensation affected pension (CAP) under the compensation recovery rules in Part IIIC of the VEA. Persons under pension age and in receipt of a CAP are subject to the compensation recovery rules. Any amount offset against Part II or Part IV benefits is not recovered from ISS.
As ADB is not offset against war widow/er's pension, ADB may effect the assessment of income support supplement, depending on the method of the lump sum disposal (invested or otherwise). In practice, dependants who receive compensation for the death of a veteran are usually in receipt of periodic superannuation payments resulting from the veteran's Australian Defence Force employment. These payments alone may prevent the payment of ISS. Following the calculation of the offset against war widow/er's pension, these cases must be referred to the income support area.
Safety, Rehabilitation and Compensation Act 1988
The Veterans' Children Education Scheme, prepared by the Commission under s117 of the VEA.
Military Rehabilitation and Compensation Act 2004
According to subsection 5NB(1) of the VEA a compensation affected pension means:
- an invalidity service pension payable to a person who has not reached pension age; or
- a partner service pension payable to a person who has not reached pension age; or
- an income support supplement payable to a person who has not reached qualifying age.