You are here

B33/1992 Carer Service Pension - minor legislative amendment



Carer Service Pension - minor legislative amendment

Purpose:  This instruction is to advise you of a minor amendment to the legislation governing Carer Service Pension eligibility.

Background: The Veterans' Affairs Legislation Amendment Act 1992 received Royal Assent on 26 June 1992. Part 1 of the Schedule to that Act contained minor technical amendments to the SWPA  and VEA, including an amendment in relation to Carer Service Pension.

VEA Section 39 (1)  previously provided that a person is eligible for Carer Service Pension if she or he personally provides constant care for a severely handicapped veteran, and provides that care in a home that is the home of both the person and the veteran.

Section 39(1)(b) has now been amended such that a Carer is eligible if she or he lives in a home that is either:

(i)The home of both the person and the severely handicapped veteran; or

(ii)adjacent to the home of the severely handicapped veteran.

Hence, the Carer must live either in the home of the veteran or adjacent to that home.

Effective date: This amendment became effective from the date of Royal Assent (26 June 1992), and aligns the eligibility criteria in the VEA with those which already existed in  the Social Security Act.

Processing guidelines: The legal meaning of the term adjacent is "lying near or close to" or "neighbouring". This implies that the two homes are not widely separated though they may not actually be adjoining (Black's Law Dictionary, 5th Edition).

When interpreting the word adjacent, the homes must be "closely adjoining"; examples of this include a house on the block immediately across the road from the person being cared for, or  two non-adjoining flats in the same block of flats.  This brings DVA  into line with that applying in DSS.

All other eligibility criteria for Carer Service Pension remain unchanged.

Peter Hawker

National Program Director


6 July 1992