3.4.5.50 Payability of PLS

Summary

PLS recipients can continue to receive payments through the PLS if loss of payability of pension or allowance occurs. However the PLS ceases if there is a loss of qualification for pension or allowance by the recipient.

If qualification for the underlying pension or allowance is lost, the PLS debt continues to accrue interest until the PLS debt is recovered/repaid.

Policy reference: SS Guide 3.4.1.20 Payability of Age, 3.4.2.20 Payability of WP, 3.4.4.50 Payability of WidB, 3.4.9.20 Payability of BVA, 3.6.1.50 Payability of DSP, 3.6.4.90 Payability of CP

Overseas travel

Loan payments under the PLS can be made overseas as long as the person has adequate real assets in Australia (1.1.A.320) to secure the debt and is qualified for the PLS.

Part pension payments are subject to the normal rules of portability and proportional portability associated with the pension the person is receiving. PLS payments are not subject to the portability rules.

Suspension & cancellation scenarios

The following table outlines, in general, the impact on PLS payments when the qualifying pension or allowance stops (i.e. is suspended or cancelled) or a pension claim is rejected. The PLS can generally continue where the qualifying pension or allowance stops for a payability reason.

Scenario PLS impact
Pension or allowance stops due to income or assets exceeding the allowable limits. PLS payments can continue to be paid as the pension has ceased to be payable but the person has not ceased to be qualified. Loan amounts could increase.
Pension or allowance stops due to the pension rate being reduced to zero because of the direct deduction of another payment or foreign pension. PLS payments can continue to be paid as the pension has ceased to be payable but the person has not ceased to be qualified. Loan amounts could increase.
Pension or allowance stops for a portability-related reason, due to the person having no payability during portability period. PLS payments can continue to be paid as the pension has ceased to be payable but the person has not ceased to be qualified. Loan amounts could increase.

Pension or allowance stops due to a change in the person's relationship status.

Applicable to BVA, WidB and WP only.

PLS payments to stop on the same day the pension stops.
Pension or allowance stops because the person receives a mutually exclusive payment from the DVA.

PLS payments to stop on the same day the pension stops.

The person is no longer receiving or qualified for a Centrelink pension, however, they may be eligible to receive PLS from DVA.

Pension or allowance stops because the customer failed to reply to a request for information or person's whereabouts are unknown.

PLS stops on the same day the pension stops.

PLS is paused until the information is received. PLS payments will automatically re-start if the pension is restored, including any backdated payment the person is entitled to.

DSP stops because the person is no longer medically qualified. PLS payments to stop on the same day the pension stops.
CP stops because the customer and/or care receiver no longer meet the qualifying care requirements. PLS payments to stop on the same day the pension stops.

Act reference: SSAct section 23(1)-'social security payment', section 23(1)-'social security pension'

Policy reference: SS Guide 7.1 Conditions for payment outside Australia

Last reviewed: 1 July 2019