220.127.116.11 General date of effect rules
This topic provides an outline for the date of effect rules in the context of the 2 general payment types:
- stimulus based payment (where a person is required to submit a continuation form in order to receive each payment, e.g. SU19), and
- non-stimulus based payments (where the recipient is not required to provide a statement in order to generate a payment).
New date of effect rules - non-stimulus based payments
The date of effect rule for non-stimulus based payments that will apply in any particular case will be determined by:
- whether a decision is favourable (results in a rate increase or resumption after cancellation/suspension) or unfavourable (results in a rate reduction or cancellation/suspension)
- whether the determination is 'automatic' or 'non-automatic'.
The date of effect will then depend on:
- the date of event (1.1.D.19) of the change in circumstance
- the date of receipt of the change, and
- the date the change is actioned.
The general principle is to bring an adverse determination to account from the date of the event, giving rise to it when the event is reported before the end of the entitlement period (1.1.E.125) in which it occurred.
Adverse decisions - person notifies on time
There are 3 general situations. They relate to when the change is processed.
- If the change is processed in the same entitlement period the event occurred (or an earlier period for notification of future events), the date of effect is the date of event.
- If the change is processed in the entitlement period immediately following the period in which the event occurs, the date of effect is the first day of the following period.
- If the change is processed in a later entitlement period (not the one immediately following the event), the date of effect is the day after the end of the notification period (1.1.N.125).
Adverse decisions - failure to notify within period
If a person does not notify an event within the notification period, their payment will be reduced or cancelled from the date of event.
Policy reference: SS Guide 18.104.22.168 General Notification Period - 14 Days, 22.214.171.124 Adverse Determinations - Date of Effect, 126.96.36.199 Transfers between payments, 8.6 Date of Effect of Determinations
In general, if a non-stimulus payment recipient notifies an event that would resume or increase the amount of their payment, then the payment will be increased from the date of notification (1.1.D.22) OR the date of event (1.1.D.18) whichever is later.
Multiple events processed in one activity
If multiple events have happened on the same day and are being processed together, the rate used to decide whether a determination is favourable or unfavourable is the rate taking into account ALL changes on a given day. Events on the same day are not treated separately unless they are processed in separate activities.
As far as possible, the rules are designed to yield the same result whether multiple events are processed in a single activity or in separate activities.
Stimulus based payments not affected
A person receiving a stimulus payment must lodge a continuation form (SU19 form) in order to receive payment for a given entitlement period, typically a fortnight. The person is required to advise of changes in circumstances that happen in the period covered by the form. Changes in circumstances that occur in a particular entitlement period must be either reported on the form covering that period or reported to Centrelink. Generally the date of effect is the date of event.
For a person receiving a stimulus payment on fortnightly or variable lodgement, the date of effect of a change in circumstances is generally the date of the event of that change. Where the continuation form is lodged late (and the stimulus payment is not cancelled) the determination will generally take effect from the date of the event or change, but may also be the first day of the entitlement period, or on the first day of the entitlement period which the person informs the department of the event.
Exception: Income from employment is applied over the entire entitlement period not from date of effect.
PPP persons with partners receiving a stimulus based payment
In practice, the application of the date of effect rules for PPP persons with fortnightly stimulus partners is slightly different. This is because:
- the stimulus partner is required to declare income at the end of the entitlement period on their continuation form, and
- it is preferred that couples do not each report the same income to prevent it being applied twice.
Consequently the 14-day notification period for PPP commences at the end of the period for which the income relates. This differs from the general notification rule under which the notification period commences on the day after the day the notifiable event or change of circumstances occurs, or the day after the person becomes aware that the event or change of circumstances is likely to occur (3.10.4). The date of effect for a PPP person with a stimulus partner will then tend to be later than other recipients due to the delayed start to the notification period.
SU19 lodged within 14 days of entitlement period due to lodge date
Adverse rate change
If the SU19 is lodged within 14 days of the required due to lodge date, then the change in income will be taken into account from the start of the entitlement period covered by the SU19 for the person receiving the payment and for the partner's PP. At the end of the period when the SU19 was due to be lodged, the PPP partner would have been paid their existing rate (the rate lingers). As there has been no breach of notification provisions by the PPP partner and the partner on JSP has not been paid, no debt is raised for either partner for the period covered by the SU19.
Favourable rate change
If the SU19 is lodged within 14 days of the required due to lodge date, then changes in income are taken into account for both the person on JSP and their partner's PP from the start of the entitlement period covered by the SU19.
SU19 lodged late (PPP)
If the SU19 is lodged more than 14 days after the entitlement period end day, the person's payment is likely to be cancelled for failure to lodge. Where late lodgement is accepted and a change of income results in a decision being made, the date of effect rules will be as follows.
Adverse rate change
If the SU19 is lodged late, then the change in income is taken into account from the beginning of the entitlement period covered by the SU19 for the person on JSP and their partner's PP. A recoverable debt applies from the beginning of the entitlement period covered by the SU19.
Favourable rate change
If the SU19 is lodged late, then the change in income is taken into account for the PPP person and their partner from either the first day of the entitlement period, or the first day of the entitlement period in which the person informs Centrelink, whichever is later.
The notification handler (1.1.N.124) automatically applies the various date of effect rules according to the relationship between the conditions under which a person receives a payment (stimulus or non-stimulus), when an event occurred, when an event was reported, and when the event was actioned. The notification handler is able to apply the correct date of effect to favourable or unfavourable determinations of entitlement for the majority of changes in circumstance.
Act reference: SS(Admin)Act section 72 Provisions relating to notice, section 93 Automatic cancellation-recipient complying with subsection 68(2) notice, section 94 Automatic cancellation-recipient not complying with subsection 68(2) notice, section 95 Automatic cancellation-failure to provide statement under subsection 68(2), section 99 Automatic rate reduction-recipient complying with subsection 68(2) notice, Division 9 Date of effect of determinations