Federal Register of Legislation - Australian Government

Primary content

Social Services Act 1974

Authoritative Version
Act No. 2 of 1974 as made
An Act relating to Social Services.
Administered by: Social Services
Date of Assent 22 Mar 1974
Date of repeal 25 Mar 2015
Repealed by Amending Acts 1970 to 1979 Repeal Act 2015

SOCIAL SERVICES ACT 1974

No. 2 of 1974

 

An Act relating to Social Services.

 

 

BE IT ENACTED by the Queen, the Senate and the House of Representatives of Australia, as follows:

Short title and citation.

1. (1) This Act may be cited as the Social Services Act 1974.1

(2) The Social Services Act 1947-1973 is in this Act referred to as the Principal Act.

(3) The Principal Act, as amended by this Act, may be cited as the Social Services Act 1947-1974.

Commencement.

2. (1) Subject to sub-section (2), this Act shall come into operation on the day on which it receives the Royal Assent.

(2) Sections 18 and 20 shall come into operation on a date to be fixed by Proclamation.

Qualifications for age pension.

3.   Section 21 of the Principal Act is amended by inserting in paragraph (b) of sub-section (1), before the word “Australia” (first occurring), the words “, and is physically present in,”

4.     Section 21a of the Principal Act is repealed and the following section substituted:

Qualifications for age pensions for persons Australia.

“21a. Subject to this Part, a person who is not receiving an invalid pension and

(a) being a man, has attained the age of 65 years or, being a woman, has attained the age of 60 years;

(b) has not resided in Australia at any time since 7 May 1973;

(c) ceased to reside in Australia on a date not earlier than 5 years before attaining the appropriate age referred to in paragraph (a);

(d) has resided in Australia for a period that was, or for periods that in the aggregate were, not less than 30 years;

(e) is a person who-

(i) would, if he had lodged a claim immediately before he ceased to reside in Australia, have been qualified under section 21 to receive an age pension; or


 

(ii) would, if he had not ceased to reside in Australia, were physically present in Australia and lodged a claim, be qualified under section 21 to receive an age pension; and

(f) is a person who, in the opinion of the Director-General, is in special need of financial assistance,

is qualified to receive an age pension.”.

Qualifications for invalid pension.

5.     Section 24 of the Principal Act is amended by inserting in paragraph (b) of sub-section (1), before the word “Australia” (first occurring), the words “, and is physically present in,”.

6.     Section 24a of the Principal Act is repealed and the following section substituted:

Qualifications for invalid pensions for persons outside Australia.

“24a. Subject to this Act, a person above the age of 16 years who is not receiving an age pension and

(a) is permanently incapacitated for work or is permanently blind;

(b) has not resided in Australia at any time since 7 May 1973;

(c) became permanently incapacitated for work or permanently blind while in Australia or during a temporary absence from Australia;

(d) is a person who

(i) would, if he had lodged a claim immediately before he ceased to reside in Australia, have been qualified under section 24 to receive an invalid pension; or

(ii) would, if he had not ceased to reside in Australia, were physically present in Australia and lodged a claim, be qualified under section 24 to receive an invalid pension; and

(e) is a person who, in the opinion of the Director-General, is in special need of financial assistance,

is qualified to receive an invalid pension.”

Rate of or invalid pension (including allowance payable an unmarried person).

7.     Section 28 of the Principal Act is amended

(a) by omitting from paragraph (a) of sub-section (1a) the words “One thousand one hundred and ninety-six dollars” and substituting the words “One thousand three hundred and fifty-two dollars”; and

(b) by omitting from paragraph (b) of sub-section (1a) the words “One thousand and fifty-three dollars” and substituting the words “One thousand one hundred and eighty-three dollars”.

Claims.

8.     Section 37 of the Principal Act is amended by adding at the end of paragraph (c) the words “or, in the case of a claimant who is outside Australia, at a place approved for the purpose by the Director-General”.


 

Inmates of benevolent homes.

9. Section 50 of the Principal Act is amended

(a) by omitting from paragraph (a) of sub-section (1) the words “Four hundred and sixteen dollars” and substituting the words “Four hundred and forty-two dollars”; and

(b) by omitting from that paragraph the words “Four hundred and sixty-eight dollars” and substituting the words “Four hundred and ninety-four dollars”.

Qualifications for widow’s pension.

10. Section 60 of the Principal Act is amended by inserting in sub-section (1), before the word “Australia” (first occurring), the words “, and is physically present in,”.

11. Section 61a of the Principal Act is repealed and the following section substituted:

Qualifications for widow’s pension outside Australia.

“61a. (1) Subject to this Act, a widow referred to in paragraph (a), (b) or (c) of sub-section (1) of section 60 is qualified to receive a widow’s pension if

(a) she has not resided in Australia at any time since 7 May 1973;

(b) she and her husband or, if she is a dependent female, she and the man in respect of whom she is a dependent female were residing permanently in Australia at the time of the event by reason of which she became a widow; and

(c) she is a person who, in the opinion of the Director-General, is in special need of financial assistance.

“(2) For the purposes of sub-section (1), the event by reason of which a woman became a widow has, in a case referred to in a paragraph of sub-section (3) of section 60, the meaning set out in that paragraph”.

Claims.

12. Section 66 of the Principal Act is amended by omitting paragraph (c) and substituting the following paragraph:

“(c) shall be lodged with the Registrar whose office is nearest to the place of residence of the claimant or, if the claimant is outside Australia, at a place approved for the purpose by the Director-General”.

Inmates of benevolent homes.

13. Section 80 of the Principal Act is amended

(a) by omitting from paragraph (a) of sub-section (1) the words “Four hundred and sixteen dollars” and substituting the words “Four hundred and forty-two dollars”; and

(b) by omitting from that paragraph the words “Four hundred and sixty-eight dollars” and substituting the words “Four hundred and ninety-four dollars”.


 

Qualifications for benefit.

14. Section 83AAC of the Principal Act is amended by inserting before the word “Australia” (first occurring) the words”, and is physically present in,”.

Substitution of heading of Part IVaa.

15. The heading of Part IVaa of the Principal Act is repealed and the following heading substituted:

“PART IVaa—PAYMENT OF CERTAIN PENSIONS AND BENEFITS TO PERSONS OUTSIDE AUSTRALIA”.

16. After section 83ac the following section is inserted:-

Grant of pension after claimant has ceased to reside in Australia.

“83aca. A pension shall not be granted to a claimant who has ceased to reside in Australia after he has lodged his claim for the pension unless the circumstances are such that the date from which the pension, if granted, would be paid, is a date not later than the date on which the claimant ceased to reside in Australia.”.

Grant of new to pensioner outside Australia.

17. Section 83af of the Principal Act is amended by adding at the end thereof the following sub-sections:

“(2) Subject to sub-section (3), where a pension payable by virtue of a prescribed provision is cancelled, the person who was in receipt of that pension shall not be granted a further pension by virtue of a prescribed provision.

“(3) Where a person who is in receipt of a pension by virtue of a prescribed provision would, if that pension were cancelled, be eligible for the grant of a pension by virtue of another prescribed provision, that last-mentioned pension (excluding any allowance by way of supplementary assistance) may, on the cancellation of the first-mentioned pension, be granted and paid to the person.

“(4) A reference in sub-section (2) or (3) to a prescribed provision shall be read as a reference to any of the following provisions:

(a) section 21a;

(b) section 24a;

(c) section 61a.”.

Payment of endowment.

18. Section 99 of the Principal Act is amended by omitting sub-section (3).

Rate of unemployment and sickness benefit.

19. Section 112 of the Principal Act is amended-

(a) by omitting from paragraph (a) of sub-section (1) the words “Twenty-three dollars” and substituting the words “Twenty-six dollars”;

(b) by omitting from paragraph (b) of sub-section (1) the words “Twenty dollars twenty-five cents” and substituting the words “Twenty-two dollars seventy-five cents”;


 

(c) by omitting from sub-section (2) the words “Twenty dollars twenty-five cents” (wherever occurring) and substituting the words “Twenty-two dollars seventy-five cents”;

(d) by omitting from sub-section (4) the words “Twenty-three dollars” (wherever occurring) and substituting the words “Twenty-six dollars”; and

(e) by omitting from sub-section (4a) the words “Forty dollars fifty cents” (wherever occurring) and substituting the words “Forty-five dollars fifty cents”.

20. After section 135v of the Principal Act the following section is inserted:

Payment into account with bank or credit union.

“135w. (1) A pension may, at the request of the pensioner and with the consent of the Director-General, be paid to the credit of an account maintained by the pensioner, either alone or jointly with another person, with a bank or credit union.

“(2) Payments under this section to the credit of an account shall be made at such intervals as the Director-General determines.”

“(3) Where the amount of a payment under this section to the credit of an account exceeds the amount payable to the pensioner, the Director-General may, within 3 years after the date of the payment, serve on the bank or credit union with which the account is maintained a notice in writing requiring the bank or credit union to pay to Australia, out of that account

(a) the amount specified in the notice, being an amount that is not greater than the amount of that excess or so much of the amount of that excess as has not been repaid to, or recovered by, Australia; or

(b) the amount of the balance standing to the credit of the account at the time of the service of the notice on the bank or credit union,

whichever is the lesser amount.

“(4) A bank or credit union shall comply with a notice served on it under sub-section (3).

Penalty: $100.

“(5) Where the Director-General serves a notice under sub-section (3) he shall serve a copy of the notice, either personally or by post, on the pensioner to whom the notice relates.

“(6) A bank or credit union that makes a payment to Australia in compliance with a notice from the Director-General that is expressed to be given under sub-section (3) shall be deemed to have made that payment under the authority of, and on behalf of, the pensioner to whom the notice relates.


 

“(7) In this section, unless the contrary intention appears-

‘account’, in relation to a credit union, means an account maintained by a person with the credit union to which are credited moneys received on deposit by the credit union from that person;

‘credit union’ means an organization registered as a credit union under a law of a State or a Territory;

‘pension’ means a pension or other benefit under this Act that is payable in instalments, but does not include a benefit under Part VII;

‘pensioner’ means a person entitled to receive payment of a pension, whether on his own behalf or on behalf of another person.”

Application of amendments.

21. (1) In so far as an amendment made by this Act affects instalments of pensions or allowances under the Social Services Act 1947-1974, the amendment applies in relation to an instalment of a pension or allowance falling due on the day on which this Act receives the Royal Assent, if that day is a pension pay-day, or, if it is not, on the first pension pay-day after the day on which this Act receives the Royal Assent and to all subsequent instalments.

(2) In so far as an amendment made by this Act affects instalments of service pensions under the Repatriation Act 1920-1974, the amendment applies in relation to an instalment of a service pension falling due on the day on which this Act receives the Royal Assent, if that day is a service pension pay-day, or, if it is not, on the first service pension payday after that day, and to all subsequent instalments.

(3) In so far as an amendment made by this Act affects instalments of unemployment or sickness benefit, the amendment applies in relation to an instalment of benefit payable in respect of a period that commenced during the period of 6 days immediately before the day on which this Act receives the Royal Assent and in relation to an instalment of benefit payable in respect of a period that commences on or after that day.