3.1.5.100 Bereavement Payment Provisions for PA Recipients

Summary

This topic explains the bereavement payment provisions for PA recipients that are DIFFERENT to the general provisions explained elsewhere in this section. It includes information on:

  • continuation of PA during bereavement period,
  • payment of deceased partner's pension/benefit, and
  • the bereavement lump sum.

Continuation of PA during the bereavement period

A PA recipient qualifies for continuation of PA during the bereavement period, if:

  • their partner was a pensioner, service pensioner or long term social security recipient at the time of their death, AND
  • the recipient was a long term social security recipient at the time of their partner's death.

Act reference: SSAct section 771NU(1) Continuation of PA for bereavement period, section 23(1)-'long-term social security recipient', section 21(2) Bereavement definitions

Effect on PA rate when the partner dies

PA should continue to be paid to the surviving partner at the:

  • partnered rate, for the bereavement rate continuation period, and
  • single rate for the bereavement rate lump sum period.

Payments are subject to the continued lodgement of fortnightly or 4 weekly forms, requiring details of the recipient's income and assets and any changes to their circumstances. The following table explains the impact of any changes in income or assets during the bereavement period:

If the level of income or assets… Then the rate of PA…
REDUCES in the bereavement period, INCREASES from the date of notification.
INCREASES in the bereavement period, REDUCES from the date of that increase.

The recipient should be encouraged to apply for another payment within the bereavement period to avoid delays in payment. The usual transfer provisions apply. Payment of PA ceases at the end of the bereavement lump sum period.

Act reference: SSAct section 771NU(2) Rate of PA during bereavement rate continuation period, section 771NU(3) Rate of PA during the bereavement lump sum period, section 21(2) Bereavement definitions

Payment of deceased partner's pension/benefit

Payment of the deceased partner's pension/benefit should also be made up to and including the date before death. The surviving partner may also be entitled to receive their deceased partner's benefits on each payday in the bereavement rate continuation period if their deceased partner was a long-term social security recipient.

Act reference: SSAct section 771NV(1) Qualification for payments under this Subdivision, section 771NW Continued payment of deceased partner's benefit

Bereavement lump sum

The surviving partner will be entitled to a bereavement lump sum if their deceased partner was a long-term social security recipient.

The lump sum amount for the PA recipient is calculated as follows:

Step Action
1

Calculate the surviving partner's notional rate.

This is the amount of allowance that would have been payable to the surviving partner on their payday immediately before the first available bereavement adjustment payday if they had been in receipt of the SINGLE rate of allowance.

2

Calculate the couples' combined rate.

This is the amount that would actually have been payable to the couple on the payday immediately before the first available bereavement adjustment payday. If the couple were an illness separated couple they are taken to be living together for the purpose of the calculation.

3 Calculate the deceased partner's instalment component by taking the surviving partner's notional rate from the couples' combined rate.
4

Calculate the lump sum amount.

This is the deceased partner's instalment component multiplied by the number of paydays remaining in the bereavement lump sum period.

Explanation: The LBP represents the amounts that would have been paid to the couple during the bereavement period if the deceased partner had not died, less any payments that have already been made.

Act reference: SSAct section 771NV(1) Qualification for payments under this Subdivision, section 771NX(1) Lump sum payable in some circumstances

Deduction from lump sum for overpaid PA

If the recipient was a member of an illness-separated couple (1.1.I.04), the lump sum may need adjusting. The difference between 2 single payment rates that were paid during the bereavement rate continuation period, and the partnered rate that should have been paid must be deducted from any lump sum payable.

Explanation: Illness-separated couples are each paid the single rate.

Last reviewed: 11 August 2014