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Most income support pensions and many of the associated allowances are paid at different rates depending on whether the recipient is partnered or single. Typically, the partnered rate is lower than the single rate to take account of the economies associated with two persons pooling their resources.
According to Section 5E(2) of the VEA a person is a member of a couple, if they are:
- legally married to another person and is not living separately and apart from the other person on a permanent basis; or
- living in a prescribed registered relationship with the other person (whether of the same sex or a different sex) and is not living separately and apart from that other person on a permanent basis; or
- all of the following conditions are met:
- living with another person, whether of the same sex or a different sex;
- not legally married to that person;
- in a de facto relationship with that person; and
- not in a prohibited relationship
The term “partnered” is also commonly used.
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