Australia

Pension work bonus bill passes parliament

Legislation to lift the pension work bonus from $250 to $300 a fortnight has passed federal parliament.

Pensioners will be able to earn $300 a fortnight without it hurting their welfare payments under new laws which have passed parliament.

Under the bill, a single person with no other income will be able to earn up to $468 a fortnight from work and get the maximum rate of age pension.

The pension work bonus will be expanded to include self-employed retirees, who can also earn up to $300 a fortnight without imposing on their pensions.

More older Australians will be able to access the pension loan scheme, with maximum rate pensioners and self-funded retirees included.

Full-rate pensioners will be able to boost their income by up to $11,799 for singles or $17,787 for couples per year by unlocking the equity in their home.

The legislation also changes means-test rules to boost an uptake of lifetime retirement income products, encouraging more retirees to manage the risk of outliving their savings.

The measures, announced in last year's budget, are expected to cost government coffers more than $250 million over the next four years.

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