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Veterans’ Affairs Legislation Amendment (Weekly Payments) Bill 2010

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2010

 

 

 

 

 

THE PARLIAMENT OF THE COMMONWEALTH OF AUSTRALIA

 

 

 

 

 

HOUSE OF REPRESENTATIVES

 

 

 

 

 

 

VETERANS’ AFFAIRS LEGISLATION AMENDMENT

(WEEKLY PAYMENTS) BILL 2010

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

EXPLANATORY MEMORANDUM

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

(Circulated by authority of the Minister for Veterans’ Affairs,

The Honourable Warren Snowdon MP)



 

Table of Contents

 

 

Outline and Financial Impact …………………………………………………….             ii

           

1                     Short Title  ..........................................................................................           iii

2                     Commencement  .................................................................................           iii

3                     Schedule(s)   ........................................................................................          iii

 

Schedule 1 - Amendments  ………..…………………............................................          1

 

                                                                                                           

 



 

VETERANS’ AFFAIRS LEGISLATION AMENDMENT

(WEEKLY PAYMENTS) BILL 2010

 

OUTLINE AND FINANCIAL IMPACT

Outline

The Bill gives effect to an important element of the Australian Government’s strategy for addressing homelessness, announced in its White Paper, The Road Home: a National Approach to Reducing Homelessness , which was released in December 2008. 

 

The Bill will enable the Department of Veterans’ Affairs to make weekly payments for a ‘class of persons’ who receive a periodic payment or payments from the Department and is aimed at assisting those who are homeless or at risk of homelessness.

 

 

Financial Impact

 

The measure is expected to have no financial impact.           



 

Veterans’ Affairs Legislation Amendment

(Weekly Payments) Bill 2010

 

 

Short Title                  Clause 1 sets out how the Act is to be cited.

 

 

Commencement            Clause 2 sets out the commencement date of the

Act.

 

 

Schedules                    Clause 3 provides that each Act that is specified in a Schedule to this Act is amended or repealed as set out in the applicable items in the Schedule concerned, and any other item in a Schedule to this Act has effect according to its terms.

 

This explanatory memorandum uses the following abbreviations:

 

‘Military Rehabilitation and Compensation Act’ means the Military Rehabilitation and Compensation Act 2004 ; and

 

‘Veterans’ Entitlements Act’ means the Veterans’ Entitlements Act 1986.



 

Schedule 1 - Weekly payments

 

Overview

 

The Bill gives effect to an important element of the Australian Government’s strategy for addressing homelessness, announced in its White Paper, The Road Home: a National Approach to Reducing Homelessness , which was released in December 2008. 

 

The Bill will enable the Department of Veterans’ Affairs to make weekly payments for a ‘class of persons’ who receive a periodic payment or payments from the Department and is aimed at assisting those who are homeless or at risk of homelessness.

 

Background

 

The Department of Veterans’ Affairs administers payments to veterans, members and former members and their dependents under the Military Rehabilitation and Compensation Act, the Veterans’ Entitlements Act and the Safety, Rehabilitation and Compensation Act 1988 Under existing legislation, compensation and income support pensions and most other payments under the Veterans’ Entitlements Act and MRCA supplement under the Military Rehabilitation and Compensation Act may only be paid fortnightly.  These amendments will enable compensation and income support pensions and most other payments under the Veterans’ Entitlements Act to be paid on a weekly basis instead of fortnightly in certain circumstances.  They will also enable MRCA supplement payable under the Military Rehabilitation and Compensation Act to be paid weekly in certain circumstances. 

 

Explanation of the changes

 

Existing legislation requires that pensions and most other payments under the Veterans’ Entitlements Act are paid fortnightly in arrears, in respect of a pension period, in accordance with sections 58A and 121.  ‘Pension period’ is defined in subsection 5Q(1) as being a period of two weeks starting two days before the beginning of a pension payday and ending two days before the beginning of the next pension payday.  ‘Pension payday’ is defined as the Thursday falling on 11 July 1991, and each succeeding alternate Thursday. 

 

MRCA supplement, under the Military Rehabilitation and Compensation Act, is payable each ‘pension payday’ which has the same meaning as in the Veterans’ Entitlements Act.  

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Thus, pensions and most other payments under the Veterans’ Entitlements Act and MRCA supplement, under the Military Rehabilitation and Compensation Act are required to be paid in fortnightly instalments.  The amendments in this bill will enable the Department to make these payments on a weekly basis for those who:

 

  • are an Australian resident and living in Australia;
  • are receiving a pension or other payment under the Veterans’ Entitlements Act or the MRCA supplement under the Military Rehabilitation and Compensation Act;
  • agree to be paid weekly; and
  • will benefit from being paid weekly.

 

It should be noted that weekly payments will only be implemented on a voluntary basis. 

 

The existing legislation applicable to other compensation payments under the Military Rehabilitation and Compensation Act and the Safety, Rehabilitation and Compensation Act 1988 does not preclude the making of weekly payments and therefore does not require amendment.

 

Amendments of the Military Rehabilitation and Compensation Act 2004

 

Explanation of the items

 

Item 1 repeals section 224 and substitutes a new section. 

 

MRCA supplement generally payable fortnightly

 

New subsection 224(1) provides that MRCA supplement for members and former members, under section 221, is payable on each ‘pension payday’, as defined in the Veterans’ Entitlements Act, unless a determination under new subsection 224(2) is in force in relation to the person. 

 

A note at the end of subsection 224(1) advises that if a trustee is appointed under section 432, then the MRCA supplement would be payable to the trustee.

 

MRCA supplement may be payable weekly

 

New subsection 224(2) enables the Military Rehabilitation and Compensation Commission to make a written determination that a person’s MRCA supplement under section 221 is payable in two payments if the person is a member of a class of persons specified in a legislative instrument under new subsection 224(4).  If a person’s MRCA supplement is payable in two payments, the payments are referred to as the ‘part payments’. 

 

 

 

 

New subsection 224(3) makes it clear that a determination made under subsection 224(2) is not a legislative instrument within the meaning of section 5 of the Legislative Instruments Act 2003 .  A determination under subsection 224(2) is not legislative in character and, accordingly, subsection 224(3) is merely declaratory of the law.

 

New subsection 224(4) provides that the Military Rehabilitation and Compensation Commission may, for the purposes of subsection 224(2), make a legislative instrument to specify a class of persons who may receive their MRCA supplement in two payments. 

 

New subsection 224(5) details the amount of the first of the part payments of MRCA supplement and when it is payable.  Paragraph 224(5)(a) provides that the first of the  part payments is to be one half of the rate of veterans supplement that is payable from time to time under section 118D of the Veterans’ Entitlements Act.  Paragraph 224(5)(b) provides that the first of the part payments of MRCA supplement is payable on each Thursday that is not a ‘pension payday’.  ‘Pension payday’ has the same meaning as in section 5Q(1) of the Veterans’ Entitlements Act.  Furthermore, paragraph 224(5)(b) requires that, for the first of the part payments to be payable, the person must be eligible for the MRCA supplement on that Thursday and the MRCA supplement must be payable to the person on that Thursday. 

 

This is similar to the requirement for fortnightly payments of MRCA supplement, under subsection 224(1), where the person must be eligible for the supplement and the supplement must be payable on each ‘pension payday’. 

 

A note at the end of subsection 224(5) advises that if a trustee is appointed under section 432, then the MRCA supplement would be payable to the trustee.

 

New subsection 224(6) details the amount of the second, or other, of the part payments of MRCA supplement and when it is payable.  Paragraph 224(6)(a) provides that the second, or other, of the  part payments is to be one half of the rate of veterans supplement that is payable from time to time under section 118D of the Veterans’ Entitlements Act.  Paragraph 224(6)(b) provides that the second, or other, of the part payments of MRCA supplement is payable 7 days after the first of the part payments is payable to the person. 

 

Where a person has received the first of the part payments of MRCA supplement, the person will automatically receive the second, or other, of the part payments of MRCA supplement.

 

A note at the end of subsection 224(6) advises that if a trustee is appointed under section 432, then the MRCA supplement would be payable to the trustee.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

New subsection 224(7) means that where a person’s MRCA supplement under section 221 is payable in part payments, it is taken for the purposes of the Military Rehabilitation and Compensation Act, that the supplement is payable in a single instalment on each ‘pension payday’ (within the meaning of the subsection 5Q(1) of the Veterans’ Entitlements Act).  It also means that the MRCA supplement is taken to be payable when the last of the part payments is, or is to be made, and that the amount of the MRCA supplement is taken to be equal to the total of the part payments. 

 

This subsection ensures that where provisions under the Military Rehabilitation and Compensation Act do not support the concept of weekly payments, those provisions will continue to apply as intended.  That is, if a person receives two weekly payments in respect of a 14 day instalment period, for the purposes of a provision that does not support the concept of weekly payments, the two part payments are taken to be one instalment of the MRCA supplement and the two part payments are taken to be made as one combined payment on the pension payday.

 

New subsection 224(8) provides that where a person is having deductions taken from their MRCA supplement under sections 426 or 431, then sections 426 and 431 apply as if each of the part payments were a separate supplement payment.  This means that the deductions can be made from the supplement payment on a weekly basis to coincide with the weekly payment regime.  This will avoid, for example, the total amount of a fortnightly deduction being made from the second part payment.   

 

Item 2 repeals section 248 and substitutes a new section. 

 

MRCA supplement generally payable fortnightly

 

New subsection 248(1) provides that MRCA supplement for wholly dependent partners, under section 245, is payable on each ‘pension payday’, as defined in the Veterans’ Entitlements Act, unless a determination under new subsection 248(2) is in force in relation to the partner. 

 

A note at the end of subsection 248(1) advises that if a trustee is appointed under section 432, then the MRCA supplement would be payable to the trustee.

 

MRCA supplement may be payable weekly

 

New subsection 248(2) enables the Military Rehabilitation and Compensation Commission to make a written determination that a partner’s MRCA supplement under section 245 is payable in two payments if the partner is a member of a class of wholly dependent partners specified in a legislative instrument under new subsection 248(4).  If a partner’s MRCA supplement is payable in two payments, the payments are referred to as the ‘part payments’. 

 

New subsection 248(3) makes it clear that a determination made under subsection 248(2) is not a legislative instrument within the meaning of section 5 of the Legislative Instruments Act 2003 .  A determination under subsection 248(2) is not legislative in character and, accordingly, subsection 248(3) is merely declaratory of the law.

 

New subsection 248(4) provides that the Military Rehabilitation and Compensation Commission may, for the purposes of subsection 248(2), make a legislative instrument to specify a class of wholly dependent partner who may receive their MRCA supplement in two payments. 

 

New subsection 248(5) details the amount of the first of the part payments of MRCA supplement and when it is payable.  Paragraph 248(5)(a) provides that the first of the  part payments is to be one half of the rate of veterans supplement that is payable from time to time under section 118D of the Veterans’ Entitlements Act.  Paragraph 248(5)(b) provides that the first of the part payments of MRCA supplement is payable on each Thursday that is not a ‘pension payday’.  ‘Pension payday’ has the same meaning as in section 5Q(1) of the Veterans’ Entitlements Act.  Furthermore, paragraph 248(5)(b) requires that, for the first of the part payments to be payable, the partner must be eligible for the MRCA supplement on that Thursday and the MRCA supplement must be payable to the partner on that Thursday. 

 

This is similar to the requirement for fortnightly payments of MRCA supplement, under subsection 248(1), where the partner must be eligible for the supplement and the supplement must be payable on each ‘pension payday’. 

 

A note at the end of subsection 248(5) advises that if a trustee is appointed under section 432, then the MRCA supplement would be payable to the trustee.

 

New subsection 248(6) details the amount of the second, or other, of the part payments of MRCA supplement and when it is payable.  Paragraph 248(6)(a) provides that the second, or other, of the  part payments is to be one half of the rate of veterans supplement that is payable from time to time under section 118D of the Veterans’ Entitlements Act.  Paragraph 248(6)(b) provides that the second, or other, of the part payments of MRCA supplement is payable 7 days after the first of the part payments is payable to the partner. 

 

Where a partner has received the first of the part payments of MRCA supplement, the partner will automatically receive the second, or other, of the part payments of MRCA supplement.

 

A note at the end of subsection 248(6) advises that if a trustee is appointed under section 432, then the MRCA supplement would be payable to the trustee.

 

New subsection 248(7) means that where a person’s MRCA supplement under section 245 is payable in part payments, it is taken for the purposes of the Military Rehabilitation and Compensation Act, that the supplement is payable in a single instalment on each ‘pension payday’ (within the meaning of the subsection 5Q(1) of the Veterans’ Entitlements Act).  It also means that the MRCA supplement is taken to be payable when the last of the part payments is, or is to be made, and that the amount of the MRCA supplement is taken to be equal to the total of the part payments. 

 

 

 

 

 

This subsection ensures that where provisions under the Military Rehabilitation and Compensation Act do not support the concept of weekly payments, those provisions will continue to apply as intended.  That is, if a partner receives two weekly payments in respect of a 14 day instalment period, for the purposes of a provision that does not support the concept of weekly payments, the two part payments are taken to be one instalment of the MRCA supplement and the two part payments are taken to be made as one combined payment on the ‘pension payday’.

 

New subsection 248(8) provides that where a partner is having deductions taken from their MRCA supplement under sections 426 or 431, then sections 426 and 431 apply as if each of the part payments were a separate supplement payment.  This means that the deductions can be made on a weekly basis to coincide with the weekly payment regime.  This will avoid, for example, the total amount of a fortnightly deduction being made from the second part payment.   

 

Item 3 repeals section 303 and substitutes a new section. 

 

MRCA supplement generally payable fortnightly

 

New subsection 303(1) provides that MRCA supplement for members, former members and dependents, under section 300, is payable on each ‘pension payday’, as defined in the Veterans’ Entitlements Act, unless a determination under new subsection 303(2) is in force in relation to the person. 

 

A note at the end of subsection 303(1) advises that if a trustee is appointed under section 432, then the MRCA supplement would be payable to the trustee.

 

MRCA supplement may be payable weekly

 

New subsection 303(2) enables the Military Rehabilitation and Compensation Commission to make a written determination that a person’s MRCA supplement under section 300 is payable in two payments if the person is a member of a class of persons specified in a legislative instrument under new subsection 303(4).  If a person’s MRCA supplement is payable in two payments, the payments are referred to as the ‘part payments’. 

 

New subsection 303(3) makes it clear that a determination made under subsection 303(2) is not a legislative instrument within the meaning of section 5 of the Legislative Instruments Act 2003 .  A determination under subsection 303(2) is not legislative in character and, accordingly, subsection 303(3) is merely declaratory of the law.

 

New subsection 303(4) provides that the Military Rehabilitation and Compensation Commission may, for the purposes of subsection 303(2), make a legislative instrument to specify a class of persons who may receive their MRCA supplement in two payments. 

 

 

 

New subsection 303(5) details the amount of the first of the part payments of MRCA supplement and when it is payable.  Paragraph 303(5)(a) provides that the first of the  part payments is to be one half of the rate of veterans supplement that is payable from time to time under section 118C of the Veterans’ Entitlements Act.  Paragraph 303(5)(b) provides that the first of the part payments of MRCA supplement is payable on each Thursday that is not a ‘pension payday’.  ‘Pension payday’ has the same meaning as in section 5Q(1) of the Veterans’ Entitlements Act.  Furthermore, paragraph 303(5)(b) requires that, for the first of the part payments to be payable, the person must be eligible for the MRCA supplement on that Thursday and the MRCA supplement must be payable to the person on that Thursday. 

 

This is similar to the requirement for fortnightly payments of MRCA supplement, under subsection 303(1), where the person must be eligible for the supplement and the supplement must be payable on each ‘pension payday’. 

 

A note at the end of subsection 303(5) advises that if a trustee is appointed under section 432, then the MRCA supplement would be payable to the trustee.

 

New subsection 303(6) details the amount of the second, or other, of the part payments of MRCA supplement and when it is payable.  Paragraph 303(6)(a) provides that the second, or other, of the  part payments is to be one half of the rate of veterans supplement that is payable from time to time under section 118C of the Veterans’ Entitlements Act.  Paragraph 303(6)(b) provides that the second, or other, of the part payments of MRCA supplement is payable 7 days after the first of the part payments is payable to the person. 

 

Where a person has received the first of the part payments of MRCA supplement, the person will automatically receive the second, or other, of the part payments of MRCA supplement.

 

A note at the end of subsection 303(6) advises that if a trustee is appointed under section 432, then the MRCA supplement would be payable to the trustee.

 

New subsection 303(7) means that where a person’s MRCA supplement under section 300 is payable in part payments, it is taken for the purposes of the Military Rehabilitation and Compensation Act, that the supplement is payable in a single instalment on each pension payday (within the meaning of the subsection 5Q(1) of the Veterans’ Entitlements Act).  It also means that the MRCA supplement is taken to be payable when the last of the part payments is, or is to be made, and that the amount of the MRCA supplement is taken to be equal to the total of the part payments. 

 

This subsection ensures that where provisions under the Military Rehabilitation and Compensation Act do not support the concept of weekly payments, those provisions will continue to apply as intended.  That is, if a person receives two weekly payments in respect of a 14 day instalment period, for the purposes of a provision that does not support the concept of weekly payments, the two part payments are taken to be one instalment of the MRCA supplement and the two part payments are taken to be made as one combined payment on the pension payday.

 

New subsection 303(8) provides that where a person is having deductions taken from their MRCA supplement under sections 426 or 431, then sections 426 and 431 apply as if each of the part payments were a separate supplement payment.  This means that the deductions can be made on a weekly basis to coincide with the weekly payment regime.  This will avoid, for example, the total amount of a fortnightly deduction being made from the second part payment.   

 

Amendments of the Veterans’ Entitlements Act 1986

 

Item 4 adds a note at the end of the definition of ‘pension payday’ in subsection 5Q(1).  The note advises that if a determination is in force under subsection 58(3A) or 121(5A), being the new provisions dealing with weekly payments, then part of an instalment of pension may be paid on a day other than the ‘pension payday’. 

 

Item 5 amends subsection 58A(3) to take account of the new arrangements for weekly payments.  The amendment excepts persons to whom subsection 58A(3A) applies from being paid fortnightly.

 

Notes 1 to 3 insert appropriate headings to subsections 58A(1), (2) and (3). 

 

Item 6 inserts new subsections 58A(3A) to 58A(3G) after subsection 58A(3). 

 

Pensions may be payable weekly

 

New subsection 58A(3A) provides that the Repatriation Commission may make a written determination, that the total amount of an instalment of pension is payable to the person in two payments if the person is a member of a class of persons specified in new subsection 58A(3C).  Where a person is paid an instalment of pension in two payments, the payments are referred to as part payments

 

New subsection 58A(3B) makes it clear that a determination made under subsection 58A(3A) is not a legislative instrument within the meaning of section 5 of the Legislative Instruments Act 2003 .  A determination under subsection 58A(3A) is not legislative in character and, accordingly, subsection 58A(3B) is merely declaratory of the law.

 

New subsection 58A(3C) provides that Repatriation Commission may, for the purposes of subsection 58A(3A), make a legislative instrument to specify a class of persons who may receive their instalment of pension in two payments. 

 

New subsection 58A(3D) details the amount of the first of the part payments of pension and when it is payable.  Paragraph 58A(3D)(a) provides that the first of the  part payments is not to exceed the total amount of pension payable to the person for those days in the first 7 days of the pension period for which the pension was payable to the person.  The amount of pension is calculated in accordance with section 58A.  Paragraph 58A(3D)(b) provides that the Repatriation Commission will determine the day on which the first part payment is to be payable and that this day will be after the first 7 days of the pension period.  In practice, this day will be the alternate Thursday to the ‘pension payday’ Thursday. 

 

The requirement that the person must be eligible for the pension and that the pension is payable to the person for the 7 day period is the same principle as applies in relation to eligibility and payability for fortnightly instalments of pension.

 

New subsection 58A(3E) details the amount of the second, or other, of the part payments of pension and when it is payable.  New paragraph 58A(3E)(a) specifies that the amount of the second or other of the part payments is the excess of the amount that is payable to the person for the pension period over the first of the part payments.   That is, the amount of the other of the part payments is the overall amount of pension payable for the pension period less the amount paid in the first of the part payments.  New paragraph 58A(3E)(b) states that the Repatriation Commission will determine the day on which the second or other of the part payments is to be payable and that this day will be after the end of the pension period.  In practice, it is expected that this day will be the pension payday Thursday.

 

New subsection 58A(3F) means that where a person’s pension is payable in part payments, it is taken for the purposes of the Veterans’ Entitlements Act, that the pension is payable in a single instalment.  Furthermore, the pension instalment is taken to be payable when the last of the part payments is, or is to be made, and that the amount of the pension instalment is taken to be equal to the total of the part payments. 

 

This subsection ensures that where provisions under the Veterans’ Entitlements Act do not support the concept of weekly payments, those provisions will continue to apply as intended.  That is, if a person receives two weekly payments in respect of a 14 day instalment period, for the purposes of a provision that does not support the concept of weekly payments, the two part payments are taken to be one instalment of the pension and the two part payments are taken to be made as one combined payment.

 

A note at the end of subsection 58A(3F) advises that the total of the part payments equals the amount worked out under subsection 58A(2) (as affected by subsection (7) and (9), if relevant) as the amount payable to the person as the instalment of the pension in relation to the pension period.

 

New subsection 58A(3G) provides that, where a person is having deductions taken from their pension under sections 58J or 122B, then those sections apply as if each of the part payments were a separate pension payment.  This means that the deductions can be made on a weekly basis to coincide with the weekly payment regime.  This will avoid, for example, the total amount of a fortnightly deduction being made from the second part payment.    

 

A note advises that a heading is inserted to subsection 58A(4).

 

Item 7 amends subsection 121(5) to take account of the new arrangements for weekly payments.  The amendment excepts persons to whom subsection 121(5A) applies from being paid fortnightly.

 

Notes 1 to 5 insert appropriate headings to subsections 121(1), (2), (3) and (5).   

 

Item 8 inserts new subsections 121(5A) to 58A(5G) after subsection 121(5). 

 

Pensions may be payable weekly

 

New subsection 121(5A) provides that the Repatriation Commission may make a written determination, that the total amount of an instalment of pension is payable to the person in two payments if the person is a member of a class of persons specified in new subsection 121(5C).  Where a person is paid an instalment of pension in two payments, the payments are referred to as part payments

 

New subsection 121(5B) makes it clear that a determination made under subsection 121(5A) is not a legislative instrument within the meaning of section 5 of the Legislative Instruments Act 2003 .  A determination under subsection 121(5A) is not legislative in character and, accordingly, subsection 121(5B) is merely declaratory of the law.

 

New subsection 121(5C) provides that Repatriation Commission may, for the purposes of subsection 121(5A), make a legislative instrument to specify a class of persons who may receive their instalment of pension in two payments. 

 

New subsection 121(5D) details the amount of the first of the part payments of pension and when it is payable.  Paragraph 121(5D)(a) provides that, for a pension that is not DFISA, the first of the  part payments is not to exceed the total amount of pension payable to the person for those days in the first 7 days of the pension period for which the pension was payable to the person.  The amount of pension is calculated in accordance with section 121. 

 

Paragraph 121(5D)(b) provides that, for a pension that is DFISA, the first of the part payments is not to exceed the total amount of pension payable to the person for those days in the first 7 days of the pension period for which the pension was payable to the person.  The amount of DFISA pension  is calculated in accordance with subsection 121(2).  Paragraph 121(5D)(c) states that the Repatriation Commission will determine the day on which the first part payments is to be payable and that this day will be after the first 7 days of the pension period.  In practice, this day is expected to be the alternate Thursday to the pension payday Thursday. 

 

The requirement that the person must be eligible for the pension and that the pension is payable to the person, in this case for the first 7 days of the period, is the same principle as applies in relation to eligibility and payability for fortnightly instalments of pension.  If a person receives the first of the part payments, they will automatically receive the second, or other, of the part payments. 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

New subsection 121(5E) details the amount of the second, or other, of the part payments of pension and when it is payable.  New paragraph 121(5E)(a) specifies that the amount of the second, or other, of the part payments is the excess of the amount that is payable to the person for the pension period over the first of the part payments.   That is, the amount of the other of the part payments is the overall amount of pension payable for the pension period less the amount paid in the first of the part payments.  New paragraph 121(5E)(b) states that the Repatriation Commission will determine the day on which the second, or other, of the part payments is to be payable and that this day will be after the end of the pension period.  In practice, it is expected that this day will be the pension payday Thursday.

 

New subsection 121(5F) means that where a person’s pension is payable in part payments, it is taken for the purposes of the Veterans’ Entitlements Act, that the pension is payable in a single instalment.  Furthermore, the pension instalment is taken to be payable when the last of the part payments is, or is to be made, and that the amount of the pension instalment is taken to be equal to the total of the part payments. 

 

This subsection ensures that where provisions under the Veterans’ Entitlements Act do not support the concept of weekly payments, those provisions will continue to apply as intended.  That is, if a person receives two weekly payments in respect of a 14 day instalment period, for the purposes of a provision that does not support the concept of weekly payments, the two part payments are taken to be one instalment of the pension and the two part payments are taken to be made as one combined payment.

 

A note at the end of subsection 121(5F) advises that the total of the part payments equals the amount worked out under subsection 121(2) as the amount payable to the person as the instalment of the pension in relation to the pension period.

 

New subsection 121(5G) provides that, where a person is having deductions taken from their pension under sections 122B, 122D or 122E, then those sections apply as if each of the part payments were a separate pension payment.  This means that the deductions can be made on a weekly basis to coincide with the weekly payment regime, rather than fortnightly.  This will avoid, for example, the total amount of a fortnightly deduction being made from the second part payment.   

 

Notes 1 to 3 advise that headings are inserted to subsections 121(6), (6A) and (7).

 

Commencement

 

Clause 2 provides this Act commences on Royal Assent.