Reduction in deeming rates

  • Post category:Centrelink

A further reduction in deeming rates was announced on 22 March. The deeming rates will reduce as follows: The deeming thresholds are unchanged at $51,800 (single) and $86,200 (couple) which are generally indexed on 1 July each year. The rates will take effect from 1 May 2020, and any additional entitlement…

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Waiting periods and assets testing

  • Post category:Centrelink

The ordinary one week waiting period that applies to some payments is waived when claiming because you’re impacted by COVID-19. The Liquid Assets Waiting Period (LAWP) is also waived if you’re entitled to the Coronavirus Supplement. If you’ve already applied for a payment and are currently serving a LAWP, you…

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New category of Crisis Payment

  • Post category:Centrelink

Individuals claiming an income support payment may be eligible for a Crisis Payment under a proposed new category, if they are required to self-isolate at home due to the Coronavirus.At the time of claiming the Crisis Payment, a person must:▪ have made a claim and qualify for an income support…

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Applying for a new benefit – impacted by COVID-19

  • Post category:Centrelink

Depending on your circumstances, you may be eligible to apply for a number of payments. You may have been stood down, made redundant, or have had your hours significantly reduced. It’s also possible that you’ve needed to stop working to care for someone.Also, if you’re unable to work, are in…

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Existing social security recipients -change in circumstances

  • Post category:Centrelink

If you’re already receiving a particular benefit or payment and your circumstances change due to COVID-19, your benefit may remain unchanged. However, a change in circumstances that is not a result of COVID-19 will be assessed under the ordinary rules, and may impact your entitlement.All changes should be reported to…

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Coronavirus Supplement

  • Post category:Centrelink

The Coronavirus supplement of $550 per fortnight will be paid to new and existing recipients of:• JobSeeker Payment• Youth Allowance (Jobseeker)• Parenting Payment• ABSTUDY• Austudy• Farm Household Allowance, and• Special Benefit. The supplement will be paid over the next six months and will be paid automatically with yourordinary fortnightly entitlement. It…

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Income stream drawdown rates

  • Post category:Retirement

There is a temporary reduction in the minimum annual amount that you’re required to withdrawfrom your super income stream. The reduction in the minimum drawdown rates applies for the duration of the 2019/20 financial year and for the 2020/21 financial year. The minimum drawdowns for account based pensions reduces as…

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Business Investment

  • Post category:General

Small business loans – relief packageAustralian banks will provide support to eligible small businesses by deferring loan payments for up to six months, where assistance is required as a result of COVID-19. The intention is for banks to implement this as soon as possible. If you haven’t yet been contacted…

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Updated: Stimulus relief package and what this could mean for you

  • Post category:General

A number of measures have been announced to support Australians and the economy in response to the Coronavirus. We have put together some information to summarise the key measures and to assist you in understanding the help that could be available to you.

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Markets continue to fall on virus impacts – March 17

  • Post category:Investing

What happened? • Global share markets continued to fall to start this week with the US share market down 10.8% and the Australian market down 9.7% on Monday, 16 March. • The US Federal Reserve cut interest rates by 1.5% this month from a range of 1.5% to 1.75% to a range of 0% to 0.25%. • In Australia the RBA cut rates by 0.25% from 0.75% to 0.5%. • There are expectations of another cut by the RBA this Thursday 19 March 2020. • Investors are worried about weakness in the global economy because of: o more Coronavirus cases outside of China, and o a collapsed oil price deal. • This saw investors continue selling their shares because they are concerned about the short-term impact on businesses from these threats.

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Side by Side: A guide for people wanting support to make decisions

This guide contains step-by-step instructions, an easy English fact sheet, and the forms to apoint a medical support person and supportive attorney. The information and forms in this edition have been updated to take into account the implementation of the Medical Treatment Planning and Decisions Act 2016 which came into effect on 12 March 2018.

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A guide to retirement in Australia
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A guide to retirement in Australia

Many of us think of retirement as a given – you work hard for your middle years, and then you get to bow out of the workforce and enjoy a well-deserved rest, take those bucket-list trips and enjoy the best life has to offer. After all, you’ve made your contribution and now you’ve earned the right to kick back.

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Four strategies to maximise your super

Many of us daydream about the day we finally retire and are able to do the things we’ve longed for, whether that’s travelling the world, campervanning around Australia, improving our golf or gardening skills, or spending more time socialising or with our grandchildren.

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Markets fall on oil price and virus shocks

  • Post category:Investing

What happened? • Global share markets have fallen in the last week as well as the Australian share market. • Investors are worried about weakness in the global economy because of o More coronavirus cases outside of China, and o A collapsed oil price deal • This saw investors continue selling their shares because they are concerned about the short-term impact on businesses from these threats.

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Coronavirus update podcast: A view from the ground

  • Post category:Investing

The outbreak of the coronavirus has led to concerns about what its rapid spread could mean for global markets and economies. In this podcast, Hong Kong-based economist Stephen Green discusses the supply-chain disruptions already taking shape, which sectors stand to lose — or gain — from the crisis and how soon “business as usual” might be expected to return to China and global economies.

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Markets fall on oil price and coronavirus shocks

  • Post category:Investing

What happened? • Global share markets have fallen in recent days driven by a collapsed oil deal and coronavirus impacts. • The Australian share market fell 19.6% from its peak on 20 February 2020 to 9 March. • This means the gains of 2019 have been lost with the index back at Dec-18 levels.

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Retirees and Insurance

  • Post category:Insurance

If you have retired and think the days of reviewing your financial plans are over, think again. Now is the time to review your entire plan in-line with your new lifestyle and pay particular attention to any insurance cover in place.

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Is your small business covered?

According to a 2018 survey by research firm East & Partners for Scottish Pacific, nearly 80 per cent of small and medium enterprises (SMEs) said cash flow issues caused them the most sleepless nights,1 whilst a 2019 survey by the same group highlighted that the number of SMEs planning to borrow from their bank to fund business growth has halved in the past five years to 18.3 per cent2. If small businesses are struggling with cash flow, but not willing to borrow from their bank what strategies are they considering to improve cash flow, grow their business and ensure longevity of their livelihood?

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Recovering from a loss

  • Post category:General

We cannot control or influence curve balls life throws at us such as sudden trauma or loss, but we can protect ourselves from the impacts by having a sound estate plan in place and appropriate insurance cover.

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Easy steps to secure your online information

The Australian Cyber Security Centre (ACSC) has developed an Easy Steps Guide to help Australians protect themselves from cyber criminals. Lottery and grant scams, identity theft, investment scams, hacking, phishing, dating and romance scams, online abuse and sextortion are just some of the threats people face. Our Easy Steps Guide shows how you can better protect yourself from these threats and secure your accounts and devices, by stepping you through a six-day plan. On completion of the Guide, you will have strengthened the security of your online accounts and your information.

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Covid-19 market impact
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Covid-19 market impact

  • Post category:Investing

From late December 2019 a new virus outbreak, officially called Covid-19 (a.k.a. “coronavirus”), emerged out of Wuhan, China. To date this outbreak was focused on China which accounted for 96.7% of 80,423 confirmed cases and 98.4% of 2,708 reported deaths (as at February 26). However, in recent weeks we have seen notable growth in cases particularly in South Korea and Italy as well as Japan, Iran and elsewhere in Europe.

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Weekly Market Update – 02 March 2020
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Weekly Market Update – 02 March 2020

  • Post category:Investing

This week’s thought and chart look at the swift drop in global equities and the questions investors should now ask about the direction of markets.

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FIRST HOME LOAN DEPOSIT SCHEME (FHLDS)

  • Post category:Property

The First Home Loan Deposit Scheme is a Australian Government initiative to support eligible first home buyers purchase a home sooner. It does this by providing a guarantee that will allow eligible first home buyers on low and middle incomes to purchase a home with a deposit of as little as 5 per cent. The Scheme will support up to 10,000 loans each financial year, starting from 1 January 2020.

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Changes to Guardianship laws in Victoria effective 1 March 2020

Changes to Victorian guardianship laws simplify and modernise guardianship, protecting and promoting the human rights and dignity of adults with a disability, including the elderly and those with age-related illnesses and impaired decision making. It also introduces new offences. Lawyer Juliet O’Brien outlines the key issues that those involved with guardianship and administration matters for represented persons need to be aware of.

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