Check-up before you travel overseas


As the frequency of overseas trips continues to rise among Australians, the Department of Human Services is reminding customers to do their research before they travel overseas.

Department of Human Services spokesperson Scott Anderson said from 1 January 2015, changes may impact Commonwealth Seniors Health Card holders, students, Australian Apprentices and Disability Support Pension (DSP) customers who travel overseas.

Age Pension customers are not affected by these changes.

“From 1 January, those people who hold a Commonwealth Seniors Health Card will now be able to spend up to 19 weeks overseas before their card will be cancelled,” Mr Anderson said.

“This is one way we can make things more streamlined for self”‘funded retirees.”

Mr Anderson said students and Australian Apprentices should check our department’s website to find out how their payment will be affected by overseas travel.

“From 1 January, students and Australian Apprentices who receive Youth Allowance, Austudy or ABSTUDY will no longer be eligible for payments while overseas, unless they are undertaking an approved activity.

“Changes from 1 January also mean  Disability Support Pensioners who travel overseas can continue to receive their payments for four weeks in any 12 month period.

“Except in very specific circumstances, DSP recipients will have their payment stopped if they are overseas for longer than four weeks.

“With the recent legislation changes, I recommend people who receive DSP always advise the department of overseas travel plans.”

Mr Anderson said the ease and affordability of overseas travel could result in people unwittingly placing themselves in financial difficulty if they aren’t fully aware of the rules.

“I strongly encourage anyone who relies on a Centrelink payment to do their research before making overseas travel arrangements, by,”  Mr Anderson said.


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