Australian Civil Liberties Union

Your Rights 2005

Chapter 19

Rights of Senior Citizens

Seniors and Concession Cards
Anti Discrimination
Financial Matters
Where to go for Help

See also Chapter 12: Compensation and Pension payments.


Aged Pensions

[Source: Centrelink]

You may qualify for an Age Pension if you are over a certain age and you meet an assets and income test.Men qualify for an Age Pension at 65 years or over.If you are a woman, it depends on your date of birth. The minimum age for a woman to get the Age Pension began to increase from 1 July 1995 and will continue to increase until it reaches 65 by 2014.The maximum rate per fortnight is $464.20 if you are single or $387.60 each if you are part of a couple. If you are separated because of illness you may each be paid the single pension rate. Phone: 13 23 00 (Centrelink)

Web site

Overseas pensions

If you have lived or worked overseas in any country and you are claiming or receiving Age Pension, you may also be requested to take steps to get a pension from the other country and advise Centrelink of the outcome. We can help you to claim any overseas pensions. The Australian dollar value of any overseas income you get, for example from an overseas pension, is used to work out how your overseas income affects your Age Pension. We use a commercial exchange rate to work this out. To find out the current exchange rates phone Freecall?1800 050 041.For information about overseas pensions, international agreements and going overseas, phone 13 1673 or visit your local Centrelink Customer Service Centre.

How can I register an Intent to Claim?

Intent to Claim: You can register an intent to claim for Age Pension. This will ensure you are paid from the earliest possible date. Once you have registered your intent to claim, a Centrelink Customer Service Officer will contact you within 2 days to assist you with your claim and send you a claim form. You can also register an intent to claim by visiting any Centrelink Customer Service Centre, or by telephoning us on 13 2300. If you cannot telephone us yourself, someone else can telephone Centrelink for you, so you can register your intent to claim as soon as possible.Claim: You can download the claim forms and information from this page, complete the forms and return them to your nearest Centrelink Customer Service Centre. If you are having trouble downloading the forms and information, you can telephone Centrelink on 13 2300 or visit your nearest Centrelink Customer Service Centre and a Customer Service Officer will be able to help you. Please Note: If you choose to download and complete a claim for Age Pension, your claim may only be payable from the date you lodge your completed claim form, or when you register your intent to claim.

What information do I need to make a claim?

You will need to provide proof of identity. You may also be asked to provide proof of your age and residence, as well as information about your income and assets and, depending on your circumstances, your partner's income and assets. For more information, go to Factors Affecting Payments and Eligibility. If you have any questions, telephone Centrelink on 13 2300 or visit your nearest Centrelink Customer Service Centre.

Are there any other forms that need to be completed?

So that your claim can be accurately assessed based on your (or your partner's) personal circumstances, you may need to download and complete some of the following additional forms:

Information about self-employment or your involvement in a business
Details about your residency in Australia and other countries
nformation about your involvement in a private company
Iinformation about your involvement in a private trust
If you have separated from your partner since you last claimed a Centrelink payment or service
If your claim is on the basis of permanent blindness
Details about your income and assets
Information for people
who are currently paying rent for where they are living.

You can authorise a person to act on your behalf when dealing with Centrelink, or who can receive your payments, go to the someone to deal with Centrelink for you section of our website.

For more informationor to ask for help, you can: visit the Centrelink Age Pension Website; telephone Centrelink on your main Services and Payments Telephone Number; or visit your nearest Centrelink Customer Service Centre

Services & Payments Telephone Numbers:

A brief explanation about using these numbers for enquiries about services and payments.

Employment Services: 13 2850: Use this number for looking for work enquiries including Newstart Allowance, Widow Allowance, Mature Age Allowance, Farm Help, Change, Exceptional Circumstances Relief Payment, Partner Allowance, Special Benefit, Job Network employment services.

Retirement Services: 13 2300: Use this number for retirement enquiries including Age Pension, Pensioner Concession Cards, Retirement Assistance for Farmers Scheme, Widow B Pension, Wife Pension, Commonwealth Seniors Health Card, Financial Information Service.

Disability, Sickness and Carers: 13 2717: Use this number for disability, sickness and carer enquiries including Disability Support Pension, Mobility Allowance, Carer Payment, Carer Allowance, Sickness Allowance.

Family Assistance Office: 13 6150: Use this number for family enquiries including Family Tax Benefit (Parts A and B), Child Care Benefit, Parenting Payment, Double Orphan Pension, Health Care Cards, Maternity Payment, Maternity Immunisation Allowance and Jobs, Education and Training (JET).

Youth and Student Services: 13 2490: Use this number for study and training enquiries including Youth Allowance, Austudy payment, Pensioner Education Supplement.

How much Age Pension do I get?

Payment rates appear below as a guide only and are effective from 1 January 2005. Contact your nearest Centrelink Customer Service Centre for a personal assessment. This payment is made as a fortnightly payment into your bank or other account.The maximum rate per fortnight is $464-00 if you are single; and $387-00 if you are part of a couple, subject to an assets test. Age Pensioners who are permanently blind are exempt from the income and assets tests. If a couple is separated because of illness, you may each be able to be paid at the single pension rate. The combined income and assets of the couple are used to work out their rates. Single Rate may be payable to one member of a couple if non-recipient partner is imprisoned or in psychiatric confinement. Half the couple rate is payable to one member of a couple if partner is not receiving pension, benefit or allowance.

Additional payments and benefits you may be entitled to:

Pharmaceutical Allowance
Rent Assistance
Telephone Allowance
Remote Area Allowance and $500 Advance Payment of Age Pension may be available.

You may also be eligible for a Pensioner Concession Card that entitles you to reduced cost medicines as well as other concessions.

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Pensioner Concession Cards

You can get a Pensioner Concession Card if you receive one of the following:

A pension
Parenting Payment (Single)
Mature Age Allowance
Carer Payment

Or if you are aged over 60 and have been receiving one (or a combination) of the following payments continuously for more than nine months:

Newstart Allowance
Sickness Allowance,
Widow Allowance
Partner Allowance
Parenting Payment or
Special Benefit

What does the Pensioner Concession Card provide?

The card entitles you to reduced cost medicines under the Pharmaceutical Benefits Scheme (PBS).

As well as this, you may also be entitled to extra concessions from state and local government authorities. Concessions from state and local government authorities may include:

reductions in property and water rates
reductions in energy bills
a telephone allowance
reduced fares on public transport
reductions on motor vehicle registration, and
one or more free rail journeys within the state each year.

Pensioner Concession Card concessions vary from state to state and some of these extra concessions are also available to your dependents. Please check with the organisation providing the concession. For more information, go to the Australian Federal, State and Territory Government websites.When using services covered by Medicare, you will also need to present your Medicare Card.

How do I find out more?

For more information about what concessions are available in the state or territory you live in:

Download the Pensioner Concession Card Brochure
Visit your nearest Centrelink Customer Service Centre

Go to the Australian Federal, State and Territory Government websites
Go to the Pharmaceutical Benefit Scheme information on the Health Insurance Commission website.
Go to the Medicare information on the Health Insurance Commission website.

Concession and Health Care Cards:

Centrelink issues three types of concession and health care cards which provide a range of benefits to cardholders:- For low income earners, you may be able to get a Health Care Card to help with the cost of medicines and a limited number of concessions; low income earners (receiving selected payments), may be able to get a Pensioner Concession Card to help with the cost of medicines and a range of concessions;for people who are of Age Pension age but do not qualify for the pension, you may be able to get a Commonwealth Seniors Health Card.

You must meet residence requirements to get a concession card. All three cards entitle you to reduced cost medicines under the Pharmaceutical Benefits Scheme (PBS). A Health Care Card and Pensioner Concession card also entitle you to a range of additional subsidies including health, transport and educational concessions. These concessions may vary from state to state.

If you lose or misplace your card, you should contact Centrelink to organise a new card to be sent to you. They cannot be issued over the counter. Until a replacement card is sent to you, a Confirmation of Concession Card Entitlement form, valid for 2 weeks, can be issued over the counter. This is done if you are entitled to a card and have an urgent need for a particular concession. Please note this form may not be accepted for some transport concessions.

For more information about eligibility and what concessions are available, please choose the card type:

Health Care Card
Pensioner Concession Card
Commonwealth Seniors Health Card


Commonwealth Seniors Health Cards.

A Commonwealth Seniors Health Card helps reduce the cost of prescription medicines if you are of Age Pension age, but do not qualify for Age Pension.

To qualify, you must:

Be an Australian resident,
Live in Australia
Have reached age pension age but do not qualify for Age Pension, and

Have an annual income of less than $50 000 (singles), $80 000 (couples combined), or $100 000 (couples combined who are separated due to ill health).

The limit is increased by $639.60 for each dependent child you care for. Note: Dependants of Commonwealth Seniors Health cardholders are not eligible for concessions using the cardholder's card.

The card entitles you to a discount on prescription medicines through the Pharmaceutical Benefits Scheme (PBS). By showing the card to your pharmacist, you will generally only pay $3.80 for each PBS medicine. From 1 July 2001, you will also be required to present your Medicare Card when you purchase PBS medicines.If you have a telephone connected in Australia in your own or your partner's name, you can also get Telephone Allowance.

For more information:

Download the Commonwealth Seniors Health Card brochure
Telephone Centrelink Retirement Services on 13 2300
Visit your nearest Centrelink Customer Service Centre
Go to the Pharmaceutical Benefit Scheme information on the Health Insurance Commission website.

Seniors Cards

A Seniors Card is available to Australians aged 60 and over who are not working full time. The cards are issued free by each state and territory government and enable holders to get a wide range of discounts on public and commercial activities. Eligibility criteria and concessions available vary so contact your state/territory Seniors Card office for details. Also, contact the local Seniors Card office to order a new card to replace one lost or damaged.

Although Seniors Cards are issued by states/territories, businesses, including tours, attractions and accommodation, in one state will usually recognise cards from another. Shops frequently display a "Seniors Card Welcome" sticker.

Generally Seniors Cards will not attract concessions on interstate public facilities but there are exceptions. See travel concessions below. There is a web site which has general information on seniors cards and links to state/territory Seniors Card offices (the links are also given below):

State/Territory Senior Card Offices

Australian Capital Territory, New South Wales
Application forms are available from local and state government offices including Department of Ageing, Disability and Home Care Regional offices, Government Access Centres, most NSW local council offices and all NSW MP offices. You can contact Seniors Card directly by phone or visit the website to request an application form, apply online or access a complete list of stockists. Note that Australia Post does not now stock forms.or phone Toll Free 1300 364 758

Northern Territory
The Seniors Card provides discounts from participating businesses.The Northern Territory Pensioner Concession Card provides government concessions.or phone (08) 8999 2638

The Seniors Card is for retired Queenslanders over 65 and for those retired residents over 60 who already receive a specified Centrelink or Veterans' payment or concession card.
A Seniors Business Discount Card is available to all permanent Queensland residents who are 60 years of age or over, regardless of their income or assets who do not qualify for a Seniors Card.or phone (07) 3224 2788.For Queensland country residents Freecall 1800 175 500

South Australia
Apply at post offices or contact the office: phone (08) 8226 6852 or 1300 366 150.Freecall from country areas 1800 819 961

Phone (03) 6222 7651 or Freecall 1800 678 174

Phone (03) 9616 8241.

Western Australia
Phone (08) 9220 1111

Great Southern Railways (Indian Pacific, The Ghan and The Overland) have concession prices for holders of the Pensioner Concession Card and holders of the Commonwealth Seniors Health Card.


New Zealand Seniors Card

Australian seniors are eligible for the New Zealand Seniors Card. This card, like the seniors cards in Australia, is a travel and shopping card that gives you discounts and benefits on a large range of goods and services. There are no restrictions on eligibility other than age (must be 55 or older) and you can still be working full or part time to qualify. The card can also be used at a range of businesses in Australia and the South Pacific. It cost $24 for two years. The website has more information and includes an application form


Pensioner Concession Cards have no validity for concessions overseas. However travellers report that they have used these card successfully overseas so it's always worth trying.

You can get many discounts overseas by being joining a seniors' association such as
American Association of Retired Persons (AARP) (US$12.50 a year) or Canadian Association of Retired Persons (CAN$19.50 a year). Also see New Zealand Seniors Card above.

Discount passes for Seniors in Europe at

In the UK, "National Express" buslines offer Seniors half-price bus travel and there are Seniors discounts on railways. Show proof of age such as passport.

Photo Identification

If you don't have a driver's license or passport there can sometimes be a problem establishing your identity, such as when collecting airline tickets booked over the Internet, opening accounts at banks or stores or video hire shops, buying a mobile phone, etc. A credit-card size photo ID card can be obtained from the Melbourne business Keypass for $45 (ask for 10% senior's discount):in New South Wales from April 2004 the Roads and Traffic Authority (RTA) will sell proof-of-age cards to NSW residents for about $40. Also in New South Wales, residents can obtain photo ID cards from Births, Deaths & Marriages for $29 with a personal visit the BD&M office in Sydney. For more information:Phone 1300 655 236

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Draft age discrimination legislation

Age discrimination is a significant problem for older people. However, it is not currently covered under Commonwealth legislation. The Australian Government, in recognition of the need for Australians of all ages to be able to fully participate in society, has drafted new age discrimination legislation.The proposed legislation, which will outlaw both direct and indirect age discrimination, was introduced into Parliament in 2003.Phone: (02) 6250 5863 (Attorney-General's Department) Web site

Disability Discrimination Act

The Disability Discrimination Act 1992 makes it against the law for anyone to discriminate against you because you have a disability.The definition of 'disability' in the Act is very wide and it includes physical, intellectual, psychiatric, sensory and neurological disabilities. It also covers learning difficulties, physical disfigurement and the presence in the body of disease carrying organisms. Additionally, you are protected under the Act if you are accompanied by an assistant, interpreter, reader, guide or hearing dog or if you use equipment or an aid such as a wheelchair or hearing aid.

1300 369 711 (General enquiries)
1300 656 419 (Complaints information line)
1800 620 241 (TTY)
Web site:
Postal: GPO Box 5218 Sydney NSW 2001

Human Rights and Equal Opportunity Commission Act

The Human Rights and Equal Opportunity Commission Act 1986 deals with breaches of human rights as defined in a range of international treaties to which Australia is signatory.It also deals with complaints about equal opportunity in employment if you feel you have been discriminated against on the grounds of race, colour, religion, sex, political opinion, national extradition, social origin, age, medical record, criminal record, sexual preference, trade union activity, marital status, nationality, disability and impairment.

1300 369 711 (General enquiries)
1300 656 419 (Complaints information line)
1800 620 241 (TTY)

Web site:
Postal: GPO Box 5218 Sydney NSW 2001

Aged Care Act 1997

The Aged Care Act 1997 came into force on 1 October 1997. It governs all aspects of the provision of residential care, flexible care and (Community Aged Care Packages) CACPs to older Australians. The Act sets out matters relating to the planning of services, the approval of service providers and care recipients, payment of subsidies, and responsibilities of service providers. There are also a number of sets of principles, which provide further detail regarding the matters set out in the Act.

Web site: top.htm

Home and Community Care Act 1985

The Home and Community Care Act 1985 came into force on 16 December 1985. It governs financial assistance for home and community care services, the planning of services, and the people who are to be assisted through this program.

Web site:

Aged Care Standards and Accreditation Agency

[Source: Aged Care Standards and Accreditation Agency]

The Aged Care Standards and Accrreditation Agency is the independent body responsible for managing the accreditation and ongoing supervision of Australian Government funded aged care homes.

The core functions of the Agency are to: Manage the residential aged care accreditation process using the Accreditation Standards; promote high quality care and assist industry to improve service quality by identifying best practice, and providing information, education and training; assess and strategically manage services working towards accreditation;l iaise with the Department of Health and Ageing about services that do not comply with the relevant Standards

A.C.T.& New South Wales: (02) 9633 2099;

Victoria: (03) 9889 9433

Tasmania: (03) 6224 4447

South Australia & Northern Territory: (08) 8272 3766

Queensland: (07) 3852 3100

WA: (08) 9201 1344

Web site:

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Financial Matters

There are many opportunities for Seniors (those aged 60 years or older) to save money and develop their abilities.

Some caution may, however, be wise in assessing some offers such as Reverse Mortgages, which may or may not be right for individuals, depending on circumstances.

An article in "The Australian", 14/9/04,"Reverse mortgage for aged" , mentions a system to assist seniors who own their own home by borrowing against its equity and not having to repay it until death or permanently leaving the property such as to go into a "rest home".

An offer such as this can be a blessing or a curse, depending on circumstances. For those who are single, needing funds and indifferent to what becomes of their home after death, it may be acceptable. Those who have family members wanting to inherit the home when they die, will not want to pass on to them a home owned by the money lenders and subject to heavy debt.But for all intending borrowers, it deserves careful study before taking action. The adage "caveat emptor" (let the buyer beware) comes into this as much as any other business deal.

As Shakespeare said:"the borrower was always servant to the lender".It should always be borne in mind that the banks offering this are not "Santa Klaus": they have the profit motive well in mind as their primary consideration. Any "glittering deal" they offer should be measured against this reality. St George Bank and Bendigo Bank have reverse mortgages for the aged and most major banks will offer this option by the end of 2005.

The "Australian" article claims that "Australian Seniors Finance has positioned itself as a specialist lender in this market. With help from NZ firm Sentinel, the company is promoting a "Lifetime Loan" to help people translate home equity into income.The loan is based on similar products sold in the US, Britain and New Zealand.

"The Lifetime Loan can be paid in instalments, or in lump sums up to a maximum of $500,000, and requires no repayments until the death or entry into permanent care of the borrower.The householder retains control of the property. In the event that interest rates rise and house prices fall, the company's loan repayment guarantee ensures that home owners, or their estates, never have to repay more than the net proceeds from the sale of the property."This will, of course, be no consolation to any friends or family wishing to inherit the property.

The article hints former products led to foreclosure: "It is an old product that has been revived and reinvented, as no lender wants to be seen in the glare of television cameras walking pensioners off their properties because they have used up all their equity." It is surely disgraceful that it would take this kind of negative publicity to prevent this happening instead of any concern for the welfare of the borrowers.

Denis Orrock, general manager of InfoChoice, which monitors Australian loan markets, comments that banks have tried to limit such bad publicity by limiting loans to 20%-35% of the value of their property, according to age."Some specialist lenders will offer a guarantee that the borrower will not run out of equity at all- but charge a higher interest rate", he said. As rates can be high even without this, any intending borrower had better get professional advice from an impartial advisory service.

One such advisory service worth contacting is NICRI, the National Information Centre on Retirement Investments Inc., which is a government funded, independent consumer agency offering advice to the public on consumer products. NICRI's address is: PO Box 893, Woden, ACT 2606 telephone (02) 62815744; freecall: 1800020110; fax (02)62853787. Its email address is:, its website is: and it issues a variety of publications covering most investment options. About reverse mortgages, intending purchasers are advised to get a copy of the pamphlet, "Repaying your home loan from your estate- some issues fo consider", available from NICRI. See Copy of NICRI booklet on reverse mortgages here.

The pamphlet mentions three of the advisors offering reverse mortgages: (1) Easy Living Access Loans; (2) Seniors Access Home Loan and (3) Equity Unlock Loan for Seniors. The "Lifetime Loan" offered by Australian Seniors Finance is of a similar kind, and will be added to, as other banks take up the theme.

The writer warns of the danger of compound interest eating up funds, added to by an application fee and a monthly charge.Sometimes payment will come as a series of regular payments instead of just a lump sum. This "income stream" includes Immediate Annuities, discussed in a separate booklet from NICRI.NICRI received enquiries from people who wanted to know if it was advisable to borrow more than immediately needed to cover any future costs and eliminate problems in borrowing in future.NICRI decided that in view of lender costs, it may be cheaper to borrow more money later on than immediately.

Compound interest means the debt will quickly escalate. NICRI suggests that if $30,000 were borrowed, assuming a fee of $10-00 month and an interest rate of 8%, at the end of 10 years, the debt would be about $66,100, (more than double) maybe more as interest rates may increase.The question as to whether the property will gain in value or decline over time must also be considered.

Effect on Government Income Support payments: Money borrowed may be counted as an asset that will reduce pension payments and be subject to tax. Spreading out payments on a regular basis may reduce effects on income tax or assets. Before signing a contract of this type of loan, it is advisable to speak with a Financial Information Service (FIS) Officer (contactable on 13 10 21) to determine how the loan will affect Income Support payments.It is crucial to get advice before seeking such an investment from an independent legal and financial body before signing a contract, and to advise family and friends, before making such arrangements, especially those who may expect to inherit a property.This option may, or may not, be suitable, depending on circumstances, but the intending borrower should be well aware of the circumstances and their consequences before accepting it.

Seniors Financial Aids

Other opportunities, such as Seniors discounts, are less problematic, and Seniors should use them as much as possible during their "Golden Years".

Seniors who have not mastered the Internet should try to learn. Most public libraries throughout Australia have computers and many have courses training people to use them.

Online references for Seniors include About Seniors and Grey Path which list resources and opportunities and there are many more, covering almost any topic of interest to Seniors.

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Where To Go For Help

Legal Aid
See Chapter 1- Where to get help. Independent legal aid commissions are in all states and territories. They provide a broad range of legal aid services and legal representation.


Australian Capital Territory: (02)6243 3411
Queensland: 1300 651 188
New South Wales :1800 806 913
Victoria: 1800 677 402
Tasmania: 1300 366 611
South Australia: 1300 366 424
Western Australia, between 8.30am and 12.00am:1800 809 616
Western Australia:(08) 9261 6222
Northern Territory:1800 019 343

Web sites:
New South Wales
South Australia
Western Australia
Northern Territory

Community Legal Centres
Community Legal Centres are independent organisations who provide legal advice and advocacy for a wide range of people in the community, especially people on low incomes or who are otherwise disadvantaged in their access to justice.There are many Community Legal centres across the country. Some centres deal with specific legal problems or particular sectors of the community, while others cover certain geographic areas.
Phone: (02) 9264 9595.
Web site:

Commonwealth Ombudsman
If you believe that you have been adversely affected by the defective administration of a Commonwealth department or agency, you may be able to get assistance from the Commonwealth Ombudsman.The Ombudsman has an extensive range of powers to investigate complaints. In some cases, however, the Ombudsman may direct your complaint to another review body such as the Social Security Appeals Tribunal.
Phone: 1300 362 072
Web site:

Human Rights and Equal Opportunity Commission
The Commission administers Commonwealth laws relating to human rights infringements and discrimination.It has the authority to conduct inquiries and resolve matters of discrimination and human rights infringements under the Racial Discrimination Act 1975, the Sex Discrimination Act 1984, the Disability Discrimination Act 1992 and the Human Rights and Equal Opportunity Commission Act 1986.

If you have a problem which you think has been caused by discrimination or an abuse of human rights, you can contact the Human Rights and Equal Opportunity Commission for free advice and assistance.If your concerns fall within the legislation the Commission administers they will tell you what you need to do to lodge a complaint.

1300 369 711 (General enquiries)
1300 656 419 (Complaints information line)
1800 620 241 (TTY)

Web site:

Postal: GPO Box 5218 Sydney NSW 2001

Aged Care Complaints Resolution Scheme
The Aged Care Complaints Resolution Scheme is a free service which seeks to resolve complaints about the health, safety and/or welfare of people receiving aged care. It has an independent Commissioner for Complaints.If you have concerns about the care being provided it is usually best, initially, to raise these concerns with the service provider. If you are not able to resolve the issue, or you prefer not to complain directly, you can make a complaint to the Complaints Resolution Scheme.

The Scheme is available to anyone who wishes to make a complaint about a Australian Government funded aged care home, including residents of aged care homes, people receiving Community Aged Care Packages and relatives, guardians or carers of those receiving care.

Phone: 1800 550 552

Aged Care Complaints Resolution Scheme
C/- Department of Health and Ageing
GPO Box 9848, in your capital city

Web site:

Office of the Commissioner for Complaints.

If you have made a complaint to the Aged Care Complaints Resolution Scheme and are unhappy with the way your complaint has been handled or about any aspect of the operation of the Scheme you can make a complaint to the Office of the Commissioner for Complaints.

The Office will investigate complaints where appropriate, and seek to resolve those complaints in an impartial, fair and effective way.

Phone: 1800 500 294.
Web site:

Aged Care Advocacy Services
The Australian Government funds Aged Care Advocacy services in each state and territory to give independent advice about your rights and to help you exercise your rights. These Advocacy Services, which are operated by community-based organisations, encourage policies and practices that protect consumers.Advocacy Services are available to recipients of Australian Government funded aged care services, potential recipients, relatives and carers.

1800 500 853 (Aged and Community Care Information Line)
1800 700 600 (National Aged Care Advocacy Line)
Web site:

Social Security Appeals Tribunal
The Social Security Appeals Tribunal is a statutory body established to review decisions made in relation to social security, education or training payments.It can hear appeals about decisions made by review officers of:Centrelink; Family and Community Services; the Department of Education, Science and Training; and some decisions made by the Department of Veterans' Affairs.

The Tribunal will either agree with the original decision, vary the original decision or substitute the original decision with a new decision.

Phone: 1800 011 140
Web site:
Postal: GPO Box 9943 in your capital city

Superannuation Complaints Tribunal
If you are worried about or have a question about something to do with your superannuation, you should contact your fund. If you have a complaint about your superannuation, you can contact the Superannuation Complaints Tribunal.

The Tribunal was set up by the Government to deal with complaints about superannuation funds and retirement savings accounts. But, before seeking help from the Superannuation Complaints Tribunal, an attempt to resolve the complaint with the superannuation provider must be made.

Phone: 1300 884 114.
Web site:

Office of the Employment Advocate
The Office of the Employment Advocate operates a national telephone advisory service on issues relating to the Workplace Relations Act 1996, particularly questions about Australian Workplace Agreements.

Phone: 1300 366 632
Web site:

The Office also funds a number of community based organisations to provide free advice and assistance for workers.

Canberra: 1800 445 665
Brisbane:1800 621 458
Inala: 1300 365 114
Sydney: 1800 062 166
Sydney: 1300 360 689
Dubbo: 1800 655 927
Melbourne: 1800 331 617

Hobart:1800 644 589
Launceston:1800 066 019
Adelaide:1800 652 697
Salisbury: (08) 8281 589
Perth: 1300 130 956
Darwin:1800 817 055

Office for an Ageing Australia - Ageing policy

National Strategy for an Ageing Australia. Australia's strong record of economic growth and sound economic fundamentals means that an older population is not expected to be a burden on the community.

If you would like a copy of the National Strategy please contact the office:

facsimile: (02) 6282 4412

Office for Older Australians,
MDP 10, Department of Health and Ageing,
GPO Box 9848
Canberra ACT 2601

Please include your name, postal address and number of copies required with any request.

Veterans' Affairs Network

The Veterans' Affairs Network has been established around Australia to assist veterans in their local community.

Phone: 1300 551 918.
Web site:

Veterans' Home Care Agency and Assessment Agency

Veterans' Home Care provide a wide range of care services to help you remain in your home

Phone: 1300 550 450
Web site:

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Contents of Your Rights

Australian Civil Liberties Union