DO the latest Centrelink changes affect aged care?
The latest changes that came into force on 1 January 2017 were predominantly around the assets testing limits for calculation of Centrelink benefits.
BUT, there were some significant changes to Centrelink calculations designed to bring the Centrelink Aged Pension asset testing rules more in line with the rules for asset testing for Aged Care means tested costs.
What this means is that the family home is part of the equation now in some circumstances.
When a person transitions to aged care and there are no other dependents in the family home, the home has a value assigned to it for Aged Care Means testing purposes of $159,631.20.
For Aged Pension calculations, previously there was an exemption on the family home provided certain conditions were met, and it would not be included as an asset for the purposes of calculating aged pension. Now, however, this rule has changed and the home does become as assessable asset after two years, regardless of situation.
What does this mean? It means that after two years your home is included as an asset in any age pension calculations by Centrelink, and along with other assets this will likely means your pension will either decrease dramatically or cease completely.
So, yes the latest Centrelink changes do affect the move to aged care.