In Australia, there is no official retirement age but there are special rules that apply, which determine the age when you can withdraw your superannuation benefits (preservation age), and the age when you can claim the Age Pension (Age Pension age).
You can discover your preservation age (for accessing your super benefits), and your Age Pension age (for claiming the Age Pension) by reading this article, or by checking out SuperGuide’s Retirement Age Reckoner. If you’re unsure of the rules that apply, we recommend you read this article first though, and then check out the Retirement Age Reckoner (you can also find a link at the end of the article, and in each section below).
Retiring and accessing super: What is your preservation age?
Your preservation age is the age at which you can access your super, provided you have retired from the workforce or satisfied another condition of release. You can access your super benefits earlier than your preservation age, but only in limited circumstances, such as when suffering severe financial hardship, under compassionate grounds or permanent disability.
The minimum preservation age was 55 years (for those born before July 1960), and increased to 56 years from July 2015 (for those born after June 1960 but before July 1960), and increased to at least 57 years from July 2016 (for those born after June 1961), and increased to at least 58 years from July 2017 (for those born after June 1962). If you were born after June 1964, your preservation age is 60 years. To find out your preservation age, see the table below and the SuperGuide article Accessing super: What is my preservation age?, or SuperGuide’s Retirement Age Reckoner.
Accessing super: What is your preservation age?
|Date of birth||Your preservation age|
|Before 1 July 1960||55|
|From 1 July 1960 until 30 June 1961||56|
|From 1 July 1961 until 30 June 1962||57|
|From 1 July 1962 until 30 June 1963||58|
|From 1 July 1963 until 30 June 1964||59|
|On or after 1 July 1964||60|
Source: Source: Adapted from the Superannuation Industry (Supervision) Regulations 1994, Regulation 6.01
Retiring and Age Pension: What is your Age Pension age?
If you’re planning to claim the Age Pension when you retire, then your eligibility for the Age Pension becomes important. One of the most important questions is whether you have reached your Age Pension age (and then whether you satisfy the Age Pension income and assets tests).
If you were born before July 1952 then your Age Pension age is 65 years (and younger for women born before 1949). If you were born after June 1952, then your Age Pension age depends on your specific date of birth.
If you were born after June 1952, your Age Pension age is at least 65.5 years and can be up to 67 years, if you were born on or after 1 January 1957 (see table below).
Your Age Pension age is based on your date of birth, and for Australians born before July 1952, Age Pension age is 65 years of age (although women born before 1949 have an Age Pension age younger than 65 years). If you were born after June 1952, then your Age Pension age, depends on your date of birth, and will be one of the following options:
- 5 years
- 66 years
- 5 years
- 67 years.
What is your Age Pension age?
|Commencement date||Age Pension age||Affects people born|
|65||Born before July 1952|
|From 1 July 2017||65.5||From 1 July 1952 to 31 December 1953|
|From 1 July 2019||66||From 1 January 1954 to 30 June 1955|
|From 1 July 2021||66.5||From 1 July 1955 to 31 December 1956|
|From 1 July 2023||67||On or after 1 January 1957|
Source: Adapted from information on Centrelink section of DHS website.
For more information on your potential retirement age, see the following SuperGuide articles:
- Retirement Age Reckoner: Discover your preservation age and Age Pension age
- Accessing super: What is my preservation age?
- Accessing super: Preservation age moves to 58 years
- Age Pension age increasing to 67 years
- Age Pension age now 65.5 years (since July 2017)
- The super challenge: At what age should I retire?