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Disability Compensation Payment - Intermediate Rate

Last amended 
14 August 2017

Legislative Authority

Veterans' Entitlements Act 1986
Section 9 (liability provisions)
Section 13 (eligibility of veterans and mariners)
Section 18 (duties of Commission in relation to pensions)
Section 19 (determination of claims and applications)
Section 23 (criteria)
Section 28 (capacity to undertake remunerative work)
Section 29 (Guide to the Assessment of Rates of Veterans' Pensions - GARP)
Section 30A to 30P and 74 (limitations die to payment of other compensation)
Section 70 (eligibility of Defence & Peacekeeping Forces)
Section 120 (standard of proof)
Section 120A and 120B (Statements of Principles)


Stated Current Purpose/Intent

To provide compensation to a veteran, member of the Forces, member of a Peacekeeping Force, or Australian mariner, where, because of incapacity resulting from eligible service, the person is unable to resume or to continue in remunerative work for 50 per cent or more of the time ordinarily worked by persons engaged in that kind of work on a fulltime basis, or if this is not applicable 20 hours or more per week.


Current Eligibility Criteria

A person is eligible if:

  • the degree of incapacity from his or her war-caused or defence-caused disabilities has been determined to be at least 70 per cent; or
  • he or she has suffered from or is suffering from pulmonary tuberculosis, and is receiving or entitled to receive a disability compensation payment at the 100 per cent general rate; and
  • the incapacity from his or her accepted disabilities, alone, renders him or her incapable of undertaking remunerative work other than on a part-time basis or intermittently; and
  • the person is, by reason of his or her incapacity from accepted disabilities alone, prevented from continuing to undertake remunerative work and as a consequence, suffers a loss of earnings that the person would not suffer if free of that incapacity.

If the person is aged 65 years or over, they must have been engaged in continuous remunerative work that commenced prior to turning 65 and continued past the age of 65. There is no requirement for this continuous period of employment to have been with the same employer/self-employment (e.g. the person may have worked for multiple employers or owned more than one business).



  1. See Notes 6, 7 and 8 under Disability Compensation Payment - General Rate.
  2. On the death of a person entitled to intermediate rate pension, an eligible dependant of the person has an automatic entitlement to a war widow(er)'s pension or orphan's pension, as appropriate.


Date of Introduction



Original Purpose/Intent

The original intention has not changed. It was felt that a rate was needed to bridge the gap between the general rate and the special (T&PI) rate for ex-servicemen capable of part-time or intermittent work only.


Significant Changes in Criteria or Purpose since Introduction


In May, eligibility criteria were tightened by amendment to the Repatriation Act 1920 (repealed).  These amendments specified that to be eligible a veteran's disabilities must be service-related, that the veteran must be prevented from continuing to work other than part time, and that he or she must suffer a loss of wages.


In December, the eligibility criteria were amended by reducing the level of incapacity required from 100 per cent to 70 per cent.


In June, the eligibility criteria were amended such that an intermediate rate pension will not normally be payable to veterans aged 65 or more at the time they make the claim.

From 1 July, the SWPA Act and Regulations were repealed and Australian mariners became eligible under the VEA on the same basis as veterans.


From 1 January 1998, disability pensioners became eligible for payment of lump sum advance of pension (See the section on Lump Sum Advance of Pension).


From March 2004, the above general rate component of disability pension is indexed with reference to both CPI and MTAWE in the same manner as the service pension.


From July 2007, the special rate and intermediate rate disability pension were increased by $50 and $25 per fortnight respectively.


From 20 March 2008, changes to the rate and indexation of disability pensions occurred. This measure included three distinct components:

1. Increase the above general rate component of EDA by $15;

2. Increase the general rate component of all disability pensions by 5%;

3. Change the indexation arrangements for the general rate component of all pensions to MTAWE/CPI in same manner as the service pension.


Introduction of British Nuclear Test Defence Service.


Clean energy advance payable for the period 1 July 2012 to 19 March 2013 for eligible recipients.


Clean energy supplement commenced 20 March 2013 for eligible recipients.


Clean energy supplement replaced by energy supplement from 20 September 2014.


Amendments to eligibility criteria for persons aged 65 or over. From 1 July 2017, these clients no longer need to demonstrate a 10 year period of employment with the same employer/self-employment.

2022The name was changed from Disability Pension to Disability Compensation Payment to better reflect the nature of the payment, in response to a recommendation of the Tune Review 2019.