What is the retirement age in Australia?

The Age Pension age has increased to 67. While many people consider Age Pension age to be retirement age, there isn’t an official retirement age in Australia.  Some people choose to retire when they can get access to their superannuation, others when they reach Age Pension age. To confuse matters there are very different ages that apply to the Age Pension and accessing your super.  While the age at which you can access your Age Penison is 67, you can access your superannuation from age 59 or 60 if you are no longer employed. And from 65 if you are still employed – earlier if you take up a transition to retirement strategy.  There are lots of different ages which is why we have prepared this outline.

Age Pension Age

The Australian Age Pension is one of the more complex and generous pension systems in the world. Consequently, it can be hard to understand. The below information will help you to understand your eligibility.

Age Pension Age requirements

Since 1 July 2017, the minimum age for both men and women to qualify for the Age Pension began to increase. The Age Pension Age is now 67 years of age and there are no further age increases that have been currently legislated.

Age Pension Eligibility

Once you reach your eligibility age, there are a number of additional eligibiliy tests that are performed in order to determine if you are qualify for the age pension:

Read more about Age Pension Eligibility.

Residency requirements

To be eligible for the Age Pension, you must be an Australian resident. You must also have been an Australian resident for at least 10 years, including at least 5 years in the last 10 years.

How much can I get?

The amount of money you can receive from the Age Pension depends on your income and assets. There are two main types of payments:

    • Singles rate: This is the amount of money you can receive if you are single or have a partner who is not eligible for the Age Pension.
    • Couples rate: This is the amount of money you can receive if you have a partner who is also eligible for the Age Pension.

From 20 March 2024, the singles Age Pension rate is currently $$1,116.30 per fortnight for people aged 67 and over. The couples combined Age Pension rate is currently 1,682.80 per fortnight for couples where both partners are aged 67 and over.

How to claim the Age Pension

You can claim the Age Pension online, by phone, or in person at a Centrelink service centre.

 

Preservation Age – Superannuation

You can get your super when you retire and reach your ‘preservation age’. This is between 55 and 60, depending on when you were born. Or when you reach age 65, even if you are still working.

Superannuation Age requirements

You can get your super when you retire and reach your ‘preservation age’. Your preservation age depends on when you were born.

Your date of birth Age you can access your super (preservation age)
Before 1 July 1960 55
1 July 1960 — 30 June 1961 56
1 July 1961 — 30 June 1962 57
1 July 1962 — 30 June 1963 58
1 July 1963 — 30 June 1964 59
After 30 June 1964 60

Or when you reach age 65, even if you are still working.

How much can I take out once I reach preservation age?

You can choose to get the fund to pay you the money in your account either:

  • as a lump sum
  • as a superannuation pension.

You can also choose to keep the money in superannuation.

Here’s how the rules on retirement age apply for these different income sources:

Retirement Income Pillar Age Rules
Accessing Age Pension Age 67 for those born on or after 1 January 1957. 66.5 if you were born before that. Check your eligibility here
Accessing Superannuation (often referred to as Preservation Age) Varies from 55 to 60, depending upon your date of birth
Accessing Private investments No age-related rules
Continuing to receive work income There are a handful of occupations whereby you are required to retire by a specific age (e.g. judges, pilots etc). Otherwise, this is usually decided by you and your employer.
Income tests apply for those on an Age Pension who still receive work income. A Work Bonus also applies.
Accessing equity from your home To apply for the Federal Government Home Equity Access Scheme you need to be Age Pension age or older. Some private schemes will lend to those age 60 or older.

All too Confusing?

Our goal is to put you in control, which is why we provide so much information for you.  But sometimes it’s helpful to speak to an expert.  We know becasue we speak with thousands of people just like you every year.

If you have questions, why not book a 30 minute consultation now.  At a cost of only $75 it will be worth the peace of mind alone!

Start your Age Pension Application

Apply from the comfort of your home. Retirement Essentials have been helping Australians apply for the Age Pension for more than 10 years.

Simply fill in our Age Pension Eligiblity Calculator and sign-up for an account to get started.

Once your application is finalised our Age Pension Specialists will get you ready to lodge it online. Then Retirement Essentials will take over and look after the rest for you.

Getting your application approved by Centrelink still takes time but with help from our Age Pension Specialists they will keep things moving along and also respond to questions on your behalf.

Ultimately this means you don’t have the stress of dealing with Centrelink by yourself. It really is just that simple! If you have been putting off applying for your Age Pension because you’ve heard horror stories about dealing with Centrelink then why not go ahead and try Retirement Essentials?

Our application concierge service starts at $296. It increases with the complexity of an applicant’s circumstances.

Age pension and other government benefits

Work Bonus

From 1 January 2024, all new pensioners over Age Pension age and eligible veterans will receive a $4,000 starting balance in their Work Bonus income bank. The maximum income bank balance for all eligible Age Pensioners will also be permanently increased to $11,800. 

Centrelink will continue to use your Work Bonus to reduce your eligible income by $300.

Changes

The Australian Government updates the age pension payment rates, income tests and asset tests three times every year.  Use our eligibility checker to make sure you are getting all your entitlements.

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