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3.1.2 Age Service Pension


Last amended: 8 September 2006



Eligibility criteria

A person is eligible for age service pension if the person:

Lodging a claim

Although a person may meet the eligibility criteria for age service pension, such a person will not be granted age service pension unless they lodge a proper claim.    

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There are a number of situations where a person may be eligible for age service pension, but not payable. For example:

  • the person is receiving another income support payment, or
  • the rate of pension is nil.     More ?
War widows/widowers

A war widow or widower who is also a veteran may be paid age service pension if they meet the eligibility criteria. However, the maximum rate of that pension may be limited to a ceiling.    

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Pension age and permanently incapacitated

If a veteran is eligible for age service pension, but is below age pension age and incapacitated for work, they may be eligible for invalidity service pension. The advantage of this is that invalidity service pension is not subject to income tax.    

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Age service pension is subject to income tax.     

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Restrictions on dual pensions



Restrictions exist on the payment of dual pensions.    

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For the purposes of Part VI of the VEA, a reference to a veteran is taken to be a reference to:

  • a veteran as defined in subsection 5C(1) of the VEA;
  • a member of the Forces as defined in subsection 68(1) of the VEA; or
  • a member of a Peacekeeping Force as defined in subsection 68(1) of the VEA.

For the purposes of Part VII of the VEA, according to subsection 5C(1), veteran means a person (including a deceased person):

  • who is taken to have rendered eligible war service, or
  • in respect of whom a pension is, or pensions are, payable under subsection 13(6) and
  • in Part III and Part VIIC of the VEA includes a person who is:



Qualifying service is one of the criteria used to determine eligibility for certain benefits under the Veterans' Entitlements Act 1986. Refer to section 7A of the VEA for the full defintion.



Currently, the pension age for a veteran is 60 years of age (VEA 5QA).

The pension age for a non-veteran is determined by the table below:

Date of birth (both dates inclusive)

Age Pension age

1 July 1952 to 31 December 1953

65 years and 6 months

1 January 1954 to 30 June 1955

66 years

1 July 1955 to 31 December 1956

66 years and 6 months

On or after 1 January 1957

67 years


A Commonwealth veteran is a person who served on a continuous full time basis in the defence forces of a Commonwealth country during a period of hostilities.  Refer to subsection 5C(1) of the VEA for the full definition.



An allied veteran means a person who:

An allied veteran does not include a person who has served at any time:

  • in the forces of a country that was, at the time, at war with Australia, or in forces engaged in supporting or assisting the forces of such a country, or
  • in the forces that were, at the time, engaged in war like operations against the Naval, Military or Air Forces of Australia

See section 5c(1) VEA

To be a proper claim, the claim must be:

  • made in writing;
  • in accordance with a form approved by the Commission; and
  • accompanied by any evidence available to the claimant that the claimant considers may be relevant to the claim

A war widow/widower is generally a person who immediately before their partners death, was the partner of, or was legally married to:

Refer to 5E(1) of the VEA for the full definition.



Age Pension Age refers to pension age as defined under the Social Security Act 1991, that is, pension age for people other than veterans.