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Social Security and Veterans' Affairs Legislation Amendment (Enhanced Allowances) Bill 2008

Schedule 3 Telephone allowance

Part 1 Amendments

Military Rehabilitation and Compensation Act 2004

1  Before section 221

Insert:

220A   Definition of telephone allowance payday

                   In this Division:

telephone allowance payday has the same meaning as in section 118T of the Veterans’ Entitlements Act 1986 .

2  Subsection 222(4)

Repeal the subsection, substitute:

Persons receiving other allowances etc.

             (4)  Even though a person is eligible for a telephone allowance, the allowance is not payable to the person if:

                     (a)  he or she is receiving a telephone allowance under:

                              (i)  the Veterans’ Entitlements Act 1986 ; or

                             (ii)  the Social Security Act 1991 ; or

                            (iii)  this Act; or

                     (b)  on or before the telephone allowance payday, the person had not given written notice to the Commission about the telephone connection to which the telephone allowance relates.

3  Subsection 222(6)

Repeal the subsection.

4  Section 223

Repeal the section, substitute:

223   Annual rate of telephone allowance

                   The annual rate of telephone allowance that is payable to a person under section 221 is the rate that is payable from time to time under:

                     (a)  if section 223A of this Act does not apply to the person—subsection 118S(1) of the Veterans’ Entitlements Act 1986 ; or

                     (b)  if section 223A of this Act does apply to the person—subsection 118SA(1) of the Veterans’ Entitlements Act 1986 .

223A   Rate of telephone allowance increased for home Internet

             (1)  This section applies to a person if the person satisfies the conditions in this section.

Note:          A person is eligible for an increased rate of telephone allowance if this section applies to him or her.

First condition

             (2)  The first condition is that an Internet carriage service (within the meaning of the Broadcasting Services Act 1992 ) is connected in Australia in the person’s name or jointly in the person’s name and someone else’s name.

Second condition

             (3)  The second condition is that the person is able to access that Internet carriage service at the person’s principal home.

Third condition

             (4)  The third condition is that, on or before the telephone allowance payday, the person gave written notice to the Commission about the connection of the Internet carriage service mentioned in subsection (2).

5  Section 224

Omit “(within the meaning of section 118T of the Veterans’ Entitlements Act 1986 )”.

6  Before section 245

Insert:

244A   Definition of telephone allowance payday

                   In this Division:

telephone allowance payday has the same meaning as in section 118T of the Veterans’ Entitlements Act 1986 .

7  Subsection 246(4)

Repeal the subsection, substitute:

Persons receiving other allowances etc.

             (4)  Even though a wholly dependent partner is eligible for a telephone allowance, the allowance is not payable to the partner if:

                     (a)  he or she is receiving a telephone allowance under:

                              (i)  the Veterans’ Entitlements Act 1986 ; or

                             (ii)  the Social Security Act 1991 ; or

                            (iii)  this Act; or

                     (b)  on or before the telephone allowance payday, the partner had not given written notice to the Commission about the telephone connection to which the telephone allowance relates.

8  Subsection 246(6)

Repeal the subsection.

9  Section 247

Repeal the section, substitute:

247   Annual rate of telephone allowance

                   The annual rate of telephone allowance that is payable to a wholly dependent partner under section 245 is the rate that is payable from time to time under:

                     (a)  if section 247A of this Act does not apply to the partner—subsection 118S(1) of the Veterans’ Entitlements Act 1986 ; or

                     (b)  if section 247A of this Act does apply to the partner—subsection 118SA(1) of the Veterans’ Entitlements Act 1986 .

247A   Increased rate of telephone allowance for home Internet

             (1)  This section applies to a wholly dependent partner if the partner satisfies the conditions in this section.

Note:          A wholly dependent partner is eligible for an increased rate of telephone allowance if this section applies to him or her.

First condition

             (2)  The first condition is that an Internet carriage service (within the meaning of the Broadcasting Services Act 1992 ) is connected in Australia in the partner’s name or jointly in the partner’s name and someone else’s name.

Second condition

             (3)  The second condition is that the partner is able to access that Internet carriage service at the partner’s principal home.

Third condition

             (4)  The third condition is that, on or before the telephone allowance payday, the partner gave written notice to the Commission about the connection of the Internet carriage service mentioned in subsection (2).

10  Section 248

Omit “(within the meaning of section 118T of the Veterans’ Entitlements Act 1986 )”.

Social Security Act 1991

11  Subsection 1061S(1)

Omit “A person’s rate of telephone allowance”, substitute “The rate of telephone allowance for a person to whom section 1061SB (increased rate for home Internet) does not apply”.

Note:       The heading to section 1061S is replaced by the heading “ Standard rate of telephone allowance ”.

12  Subsection 1061S(1) (table heading)

Omit “ Telephone allowance rate table ”, substitute “ Standard rate of telephone allowance ”.

13  Subsection 1061S(1) (table item 1)

Omit “$51.80”, substitute “$88.00”.

14  Subsection 1061S(1) (table item 3)

Omit “$25.90”, substitute “$44.00”.

15  Subsection 1061S(1) (table item 4)

Omit “$51.80”, substitute “$88.00”.

16  Subsection 1061S(1) (table item 5)

Omit “$25.90”, substitute “$44.00”.

17  Subsection 1061S(1) (table item 6)

Omit “$51.80”, substitute “$88.00”.

18  Subsection 1061S(1) (table item 7)

Omit “$51.80”, substitute “$88.00”.

19  Subsection 1061S(1) (table item 8)

Omit “$25.90”, substitute “$44.00”.

20  Subsection 1061S(1) (table item 9)

Omit “$56.00”, substitute “$88.00”.

21  After subsection 1061S(1)

Insert:

          (1A)  Item 7 does not apply to a person if any other item applies to the person.

22  Subsection 1061S(2)

Omit “item 7 or”, substitute “item”.

23  At the end of Part 2.25 of Chapter 2

Add:

1061SA   Increased rate of telephone allowance

             (1)  The rate of telephone allowance for a person to whom section 1061SB (increased rate for home Internet) applies is worked out using the following table:

 

Increased rate of telephone allowance

Column 1

Item

Column 2

Person’s situation

Column 3

Rate per year

1.

Not member of a couple

$132.00

2.

Partnered (partner getting neither social security pension nor social security benefit), partner not a holder of a seniors health card and person getting pension or benefit before 12 March 1992

$95.80

3.

Partnered (partner getting neither social security pension nor social security benefit), partner not a holder of a seniors health card and person not getting pension or benefit before 12 March 1992

$66.00

4.

Either:

(a) partnered (partner getting pension or benefit); or

(b) partnered and partner is a holder of a seniors health card;

and partner not getting telephone allowance

$132.00

5.

Either:

(a) partnered (partner getting pension or benefit); or

(b) partnered and partner is a holder of a seniors health card;

and partner getting telephone allowance at the increased rate

$66.00

6.

Member of an illness separated, temporarily separated or respite care couple

$132.00

7.

Partnered (partner not getting telephone allowance under the VEA or MRCA)

$132.00

8.

Partnered (partner getting telephone allowance under the VEA or MRCA at the increased rate)

$66.00

9.

Partnered (partner in gaol)

$132.00

10.

Either:

(a) partnered (partner getting pension or benefit); or

(b) partnered and partner is a holder of a seniors health card;

and partner getting telephone allowance at the standard rate

$88.00

11.

Partnered (partner getting telephone allowance under the VEA or MRCA at the standard rate)

$88.00

Note:          The amounts in column 3 (except the item 2 amount) are indexed or adjusted annually in line with CPI increases (see sections 1191 to 1194).

             (2)  Item 7 does not apply to a person if any other item applies to the person.

             (3)  If item 8 or 11 applies to a person, neither item 2 nor 3 applies to the person.

             (4)  Item 2 does not apply to a person if the rate of telephone allowance that would be payable to the person if item 2 applied is less than the rate that would otherwise be payable.

Note:          Because the item 2 rate is not indexed, it may eventually become a lower rate than other rates in the table.

             (5)  For the purposes of working out a person’s rate of telephone allowance under subsection (1), the person’s partner is taken to be the holder of a seniors health card if the partner:

                     (a)  is temporarily absent from Australia for a continuous period not exceeding 13 weeks; and

                     (b)  was the holder of a seniors health card immediately before leaving Australia.

             (6)  In this section:

person getting pension or benefit before 12 March 1992 means a person to whom clause 41 of Schedule 1A applies.

person not getting pension or benefit before 12 March 1992 means a person to whom clause 41 of Schedule 1A does not apply.

Note:          Clause 41 of Schedule 1A applies to people who were receiving social security pension or benefit before 12 March 1992 and who meet certain other conditions.

1061SB   Increased rate of telephone allowance for home Internet

             (1)  This section applies to a person if the person satisfies the conditions in this section.

Note:          A person is eligible for an increased rate of telephone allowance if this section applies to him or her: see section 1061SA.

First condition

             (2)  The first condition is that the person:

                     (a)  is the holder of a seniors health card; or

                     (b)  is temporarily absent from Australia for a continuous period not exceeding 13 weeks and was the holder of a seniors health card immediately before leaving Australia; or

                     (c)  has reached pension age and is receiving an income support payment; or

                     (d)  is receiving a disability support pension or carer payment.

Second condition

             (3)  The second condition is that an Internet carriage service (within the meaning of the Broadcasting Services Act 1992 ) is connected in Australia either:

                     (a)  in the person’s name; or

                     (b)  if the person is a member of a couple (other than an illness separated, temporarily separated or respite care couple)—in the person’s partner’s name.

Third condition

             (4)  The third condition is that the person is able to access that Internet carriage service at the person’s principal home.

Fourth condition

             (5)  The fourth condition is that, on or before the telephone allowance payday, the person gave oral or written notice to the Secretary about the connection of the Internet carriage service mentioned in subsection (3).

Definition

             (6)  In this section:

telephone allowance payday has the same meaning as in subsection 48(4) of the Administration Act.

24  Section 1190 (after table item 56)

Insert:

 

56AA.

Rate of telephone allowance for a person with a partner where the partner is in gaol

TA “partnered” (item 9) rate

section 1061S—Table—column 3—item 9

56AB.

Increased rate of telephone allowance for a person who is not a member of a couple and has home Internet

TA (Internet) “single” rate

section 1061SA—Table—column 3—item 1

56AC.

Increased rate of telephone allowance for a person with a partner where the partner is getting neither pension nor benefit and the person has home Internet

TA (Internet) “partnered” (item 3) rate

section 1061SA—Table—column 3—item 3

56AD.

Increased rate of telephone allowance for a person with a partner where the partner is getting pension or benefit but not getting telephone allowance and the person has home Internet

TA (Internet) “partnered” (item 4) rate

section 1061SA—Table—column 3—item 4

56AE.

Increased rate of telephone allowance for a person with a partner where the partner is getting pension or benefit and getting telephone allowance at the increased rate and the person has home Internet

TA (Internet) “partnered” (item 5) rate

section 1061SA—Table—column 3—item 5

56AF.

Increased rate of telephone allowance for a member of an illness separated or respite care couple and the person has home Internet

TA (Internet) “partnered” (item 6) rate

section 1061SA—Table—column 3—item 6

56AG.

Increased rate of telephone allowance for a person with a partner where the partner is not getting telephone allowance under the Veterans’ Entitlements Act or the Military Rehabilitation and Compensation Act and the person has home Internet

TA (Internet) “partnered” (item 7) rate

section 1061SA—Table—column 3—item 7

56AH.

Increased rate of telephone allowance for a person with a partner where the partner is getting telephone allowance at the increased rate under the Veterans’ Entitlements Act or the Military Rehabilitation and Compensation Act and the person has home Internet

TA (Internet) “partnered” (item 8) rate

section 1061SA—Table—column 3—item 8

56AI.

Increased rate of telephone allowance for a person with a partner where the partner is in gaol and the person has home Internet

TA (Internet) “partnered” (item 9) rate

section 1061SA—Table—column 3—item 9

56AJ.

Increased rate of telephone allowance for a person with a partner where the partner is getting pension or benefit and getting telephone allowance at the standard rate and the person has home Internet

TA (Internet) “partnered” (item 10) rate

section 1061SA—Table—column 3—item 10

56AK.

Increased rate of telephone allowance for a person with a partner where the partner is getting telephone allowance at the standard rate under the Veterans’ Entitlements Act or the Military Rehabilitation and Compensation Act and the person has home Internet

TA (Internet) “partnered” (item 11) rate

section 1061SA—Table—column 3—item 11

 

25  Subsection 1191 (after table item 33)

Insert:

 

33AAA.

TA (Internet) “single” rate

20 September

June

most recent June quarter before reference quarter

$0.80

33AAB.

TA (Internet) “partnered” (item 10) rate

20 September

June

most recent June quarter before reference quarter

$0.80

33AAC.

TA (Internet) “partnered” (item 11) rate

20 September

June

most recent June quarter before reference quarter

$0.80

 

26  After paragraph 1206B(1)(c)

Insert:

              and (d)  TA “partnered” (item 9) rate;

27  Subsection 1206B(1) (note 1)

Omit “and TA “partnered” (item 7) rate see items 52, 54 and 55”, substitute “, TA “partnered” (item 7) rate and TA “partnered” (item 9) rate see items 52, 54, 55 and 56AA”.

28  At the end of section 1206B

Add:

             (3)  This Act has effect as if, on 20 September each year, there were substituted for:

                     (a)  the TA (Internet) “partnered” (item 4) rate; and

                     (b)  the TA (Internet) “partnered” (item 6) rate; and

                     (c)  the TA (Internet) “partnered” (item 7) rate; and

                     (d)  the TA (Internet) “partnered” (item 9) rate; and

the amount of the current figure, as at 20 September, for the TA (Internet) “single” rate.

Note 1:       for TA (Internet) “partnered” (item 4) rate , TA (Internet) “partnered” (item 6) rate , TA (Internet) “partnered” (item 7) rate and TA (Internet) “partnered” (item 9) rate see items 56AD, 56AF, 56AG and 56AI of the Indexed and Adjusted Amounts Table in section 1190.

Note 2:       for current figure see subsection 20(1).

Note 3:       for TA (Internet) “single” rate see item 56AB of the Indexed and Adjusted Amounts Table in section 1190.

             (4)  This Act has effect as if, on 20 September each year, there were substituted for:

                     (a)  the TA (Internet) “partnered” (item 3) rate; and

                     (b)  the TA (Internet) “partnered” (item 5) rate; and

                     (c)  the TA (Internet) “partnered” (item 8) rate;

the amount worked out using the following formula:

where:

TA (Internet) “single” rate is the current figure, as at 20 September, for the TA (Internet) “single” rate.

Note 1:       for TA (Internet) “partnered” (item 3) rate , TA (Internet) “partnered” (item 5) rate and TA (Internet) “partnered” (item 8) rate see items 56AC, 56AE and 56AH of the Indexed and Adjusted Amounts Table in section 1190.

Note 2:       for TA (Internet) “single” rate see item 56AB of the Indexed and Adjusted Amounts Table in section 1190.

Note 3:       for current figure see subsection 20(1).

Veterans’ Entitlements Act 1986

29  Section 118R

Before “Even”, insert “(1)”.

30  After paragraph 118R(a)

Insert:

                    (aa)  if, on or before the telephone allowance payday, the person had not given oral or written notice to the Secretary about the telephone connection mentioned in paragraphs (b) and (c) of the definition of telephone subscriber in subsection 118Q(4); or

31  At the end of section 118R

Add:

             (2)  Written notice under paragraph (1)(aa):

                     (a)  must be by document lodged at an office of the Department in Australia in accordance with section 5T; and

                     (b)  is taken to have been given on a day determined under that section.

32  Subsection 118S(1)

Repeal the subsection, substitute:

             (1)  Subject to this section, the rate of telephone allowance for a person to whom section 118SB (increased rate for home Internet) does not apply is $88.00 per year.

Note:          The amount specified in subsection (1) is indexed annually in line with CPI increases under section 198F.

Note:       The heading to section 118S is replaced by the heading “ Standard rate of telephone allowance ”.

33  Subsections 118S(2) and (4)

Omit “is half the amount of the rate specified in”, substitute “to whom section 118SB (increased rate for home Internet) does not apply is half the amount of the rate payable under”.

34  At the end of Division 2 of Part VIIB

Add:

118SA   Increased rate of telephone allowance

             (1)  Subject to this section, the rate of telephone allowance for a person to whom section 118SB (increased rate for home Internet) applies is $132.00 per year.

Note:          The amount specified in subsection (1) is indexed annually in line with CPI increases under section 198F.

             (2)  The rate of telephone allowance for a person to whom section 118SB applies is half the amount of the rate payable under subsection (1) if:

                     (a)  the person is a service pensioner; and

                     (b)  the person is eligible for fringe benefits under section 53A; and

                     (c)  the person is a member of a couple; and

                     (d)  the person’s partner is receiving a telephone allowance at the increased rate; and

                     (e)  the person is living with the person’s partner in the same home.

             (3)  The rate of telephone allowance for a person to whom section 118SB applies is half the amount of the rate payable under subsection (1) if:

                     (a)  the person is the holder of a seniors health card; and

                     (b)  the person is a member of a couple; and

                     (c)  the person’s partner is receiving a telephone allowance at the increased rate; and

                     (d)  the person is living with the person’s partner in the same home.

             (4)  The rate of telephone allowance for a person to whom section 118SB applies is $88.00 if:

                     (a)  the person is a service pensioner; and

                     (b)  the person is eligible for fringe benefits under section 53A; and

                     (c)  the person is a member of a couple; and

                     (d)  the person’s partner is receiving a telephone allowance at the standard rate; and

                     (e)  the person is living with the person’s partner in the same home.

Note:          The amount specified in subsection (4) is indexed annually in line with CPI increases under section 198F.

             (5)  The rate of telephone allowance for a person to whom section 118SB applies is $88.00 if:

                     (a)  the person is the holder of a seniors health card; and

                     (b)  the person is a member of a couple; and

                     (c)  the person’s partner is receiving a telephone allowance at the standard rate; and

                     (d)  the person is living with the person’s partner in the same home.

Note:          The amount specified in subsection (5) is indexed annually in line with CPI increases under section 198F.

             (6)  In this section:

telephone allowance at the increased rate , in relation to the partner of a person, means:

                     (a)  telephone allowance that is payable to the partner under this Act at the rate payable under subsection (2) or (3); or

                     (b)  telephone allowance that is payable to the partner under the MRCA at the rate payable under paragraph 223(b) or 247(b) of that Act; or

                     (c)  telephone allowance that is payable to the partner under the Social Security Act at the rate payable under table item 3, 5 or 8 of the table in section 1061SA of that Act.

telephone allowance at the standard rate , in relation to the partner of a person, means:

                     (a)  telephone allowance that is payable to the partner under this Act at the rate payable under subsection 118S(2) or (4); or

                     (b)  telephone allowance that is payable to the partner under the MRCA at the rate payable under paragraph 223(a) or 247(a) of that Act; or

                     (c)  telephone allowance that is payable to the partner under the Social Security Act at the rate payable under table item 3, 5 or 8 of the table in section 1061S of that Act.

118SB   Increased rate of telephone allowance for home Internet

             (1)  This section applies to a person if the person satisfies the conditions in this section.

Note:          A person is eligible for an increased rate of telephone allowance if this section applies to him or her: see section 118SA.

First condition

             (2)  The first condition is that an Internet carriage service (within the meaning of the Broadcasting Services Act 1992 ) is connected in Australia either:

                     (a)  in the person’s name; or

                     (b)  if paragraph (a) does not apply to the person and the person is a non-illness separated spouse—in the name of the person to whom the person is legally married; or

                     (c)  if neither paragraph (a) nor (b) applies to the person and the person is a member of a couple—in the name of the person’s partner.

Second condition

             (3)  The second condition is that the person is able to access that Internet carriage service at the person’s principal home.

Third condition

             (4)  The third condition is that, on or before the telephone allowance payday, the person gave oral or written notice to the Secretary about the connection of the Internet carriage service mentioned in subsection (2).

             (5)  Written notice under subsection (4):

                     (a)  must be by document lodged at an office of the Department in Australia in accordance with section 5T; and

                     (b)  is taken to have been given on a day determined under that section.

Definition

             (6)  In this section:

telephone allowance payday has the same meaning as in subsection 118T(2).

35  Subsection 198F(1) (definition of relevant rate )

Repeal the definition, substitute:

relevant rate means each of the following:

                     (a)  the rate payable under subsection 118S(1);

                     (b)  the rate payable under subsection 118SA(1);

                     (c)  the rate payable under subsection 118SA(4);

                     (d)  the rate payable under subsection 118SA(5).



 

Part 2 Transitional provisions

36  Telephone allowance under the Military Rehabilitation and Compensation Act 2004

(1)       If, immediately before the commencement of this item, telephone allowance is payable to a person under Division 4 of Part 7 of Chapter 4 of the Military Rehabilitation and Compensation Act 2004 in relation to a telephone connection, the person is taken to have given notice, in relation to that telephone connection, in accordance with subsection 222(4) of that Act (as amended by this Schedule).

(2)       If, immediately before the commencement of this item, telephone allowance is payable to a person under Division 5 of Part 2 of Chapter 5 of the Military Rehabilitation and Compensation Act 2004 in relation to a telephone connection, the person is taken to have given notice, in relation to that telephone connection, in accordance with subsection 246(4) of that Act (as amended by this Schedule).

37  Telephone allowance under the Veterans’ Entitlements Act 1986

If, immediately before the commencement of this item, telephone allowance is payable to a person under Part VIIB of the Veterans’ Entitlements Act 1986 in relation to a telephone connection, the person is taken to have given notice, in relation to that telephone connection, in accordance with section 118R of that Act (as amended by this Schedule).