Veterans’ Support Amendment Bill (No 2)

Veterans’ Support Amendment Bill (No 2)

Government Bill

232—1

Explanatory note

General policy statement

The Veterans’ Support Act 2014 (the Act) was passed with multi-party support. It replaced the War Pensions Act 1954.

Section 282 of the Act required the operation of the Act to be reviewed as soon as practicable after the second anniversary of the commencement of Part 3 (Scheme One). It required consideration of any amendments that are necessary or desirable and required the Minister to present a copy of the report to the House of Representatives.

Professor Ron Paterson was commissioned to undertake the review. He consulted widely with the veterans community and interested parties and in March 2018 delivered his report entitled Warrant of Fitness—An independent review of the Veterans’ Support Act 2014 (the Paterson Report). The Paterson Report contained 64 recommendations. There is considerable expectation amongst the veteran community that progress will be made in implementing the Paterson Report recommendations.

A 2-stage approach is being employed to address the Paterson Report recommendations that have not been implemented administratively. Veterans’ Affairs New Zealand’s (VANZ) Short-Term Improvements Programme (2019/20), which addresses priorities for veterans and will provide immediate improvements in fairness and equity, is implemented by this Bill. The Bill focuses on—

  • improving access to services for veterans; and

  • improving support for veterans’ families; and

  • supporting veterans and their families at the end of the veteran’s life; and

  • removing unfair provisions of the Act.

VANZ’s Medium-Term Improvements Programme, beginning in late 2020, will address more complex issues and provide sufficient time for a more thorough revision of the Act as required.

The following proposals in this Bill implement recommendations made by the Paterson Report:

  • giving VANZ the ability to fund private mental health services until eligibility for public services is established:

  • giving VANZ the ability to fund treatment and rehabilitation services when a veteran is imprisoned:

  • extending services access to families:

  • modernising legislative definitions:

  • extending the children’s bursary:

  • abolishing the 5-year restriction on child care assistance:

  • continuing support and services under the Veterans’ Independence Programme when a veteran goes into long-term residential care:

  • easing access to the surviving spouse or partner pension and funeral expenses:

  • extending grace periods on death:

  • improving recognition of psychological illness:

  • allowing discretion to consider entitlement after brief absence without leave or minor offending:

  • supporting families of imprisoned veterans:

  • improving decision-making by VANZ.

As well as the proposals that respond directly to the Paterson Report, amendments include—

  • a proposal that the responsible Minister’s declaration of a deployment as qualifying operational service be published on VANZ’s website (and perhaps in another manner), rather than in the Gazette, unless VANZ is satisfied that there are reasons of operational or national security not to publish; and

  • to achieve the spirit and intent of the Paterson Report’s recommendation for a more modern definition, extending the definition of child to include a child for whom the veteran is a guardian, and a grandchild or a whāngai child of the veteran for whom the veteran has acted as a parent or guardian; and

  • a change to align the process for the adjustment and abatement of veterans’ pension rates with the process for reviewing the rates of all other veterans’ support entitlements.

Departmental disclosure statement

Veterans’ Affairs New Zealand is required to prepare a disclosure statement to assist with the scrutiny of this Bill. The disclosure statement provides access to information about the policy development of the Bill and identifies any significant or unusual legislative features of the Bill.

Clause by clause analysis

Clause 1 states the Title of the Bill, the Veterans’ Support Amendment Bill.

Clause 2 states that the Bill, once enacted, will commence on 1 October 2020.

Clause 3 identifies the Veterans’ Support Act 2014 (the principal Act) as the Act amended by the Bill.

Part 1Amendments to purpose, interpretation, and related provisions

Clause 4 amends section 3 (purpose) of the principal Act. The effect of the amendment is that the purpose of the principal Act includes providing support to a veteran’s spouse, partner, child, or dependant or to any other person providing non-professional support to a veteran (see the amendment to section 107 of the principal Act by clause 17).

Clause 5 amends section 7 (interpretation) of the principal Act. The amendments include—

  • amending the definition of child to include a child of whom the veteran is or has been guardian and a grandchild or whāngai of the veteran to whom the veteran acts or has acted as a parent or a guardian:

  • expanding the definition of other claimants:

  • inserting new definitions of counselling, guardian, long-term residential care, and whāngai.

Clause 6 replaces section 8 (meaning of different types of service) so that the definitions of qualifying operational service and qualifying routine service apply throughout the principal Act, not just to section 8.

Clause 7 amends section 9 (declarations that deployments are operational service) of the principal Act. The effect of the amendment is that, when the Minister makes or amends a declaration of a deployment as operational service, VANZ must publish the declaration (including on its website), subject to considerations of operational or national security.

Clause 8 amends section 10 (functions to be performed and powers to be exercised in accordance with certain principles). The effect of the amendment is to extend the principle of fair entitlement to claimants other than the veteran (see section 107 as amended by clause 17).

Clause 9 amends section 11 (VANZ to perform functions and exercise powers on reasonable grounds and in a timely manner). The effect of the amendment is to require VANZ to respond to a claim under the principal Act as soon as reasonably practicable, rather than within 30 working days, and to allow VANZ time to obtain further information from a claimant.

Part 2Amendments to other provisions

Clause 10 amends section 27 (responsibility of veteran or other claimant to assist in establishing and maintaining entitlements) by extending the claimant obligations under that section to a new category of claimants: persons (other than spouse, partner, child, or dependant) who are providing non-professional support to a veteran referred to in section 107 (as amended by clause 17).

Clause 11 amends section 28 (circumstances that exclude or limit entitlements) as follows:

  • new section 28(1A) provides that the exclusions of entitlement under section 28(1)(a) and (b) do not apply if VANZ is reasonably satisfied that exclusion would be unfair to the veteran:

  • new section 28(2)(ab) provides that those exclusions do not apply if the relevant injury or illness was a service-related psychological condition, such as alcohol use disorder.

Clause 12 replaces section 29 (disentitlement during imprisonment). The new section allows, but does not require, VANZ to provide treatment and rehabilitation services to a veteran in prison.

Clause 13 makes minor consequential amendments to section 31 (indexation of certain entitlements in relation to New Zealand Consumers Price Index) that reflect the amendments made in relation to funeral expenses (see amendments to sections 152 to 154 made by clauses 25 to 27).

Clause 14 replaces section 66 (surviving spouse or partner pension). The new section adds a new pension entitlement for the spouse or partner of a veteran who has undertaken qualifying operational service, without the need to prove that the service caused the veteran’s death. Other categories of entitlement remain.

Clause 15 amends section 81 (entitlement to children’s bursary). The effect of the amendment is to extend the educational institutions that attract a bursary to include industry training organisations in New Zealand and overseas.

Clause 16 inserts new section 101A (entitlement to compensation ceases 28 days after veteran’s death). The new section provides that the end date of weekly compensation entitlement of a veteran who dies is 28 days after the veteran’s death.

Clause 17 amends section 107 (treatment). At present, the only person with an entitlement to payment for or towards treatment is the veteran. The amendment extends a limited entitlement to treatment (counselling) to the veteran’s spouse, partner, child, or dependant and to any other person providing non-professional support to the veteran.

Clause 18 amends section 108 (extent to which VANZ responsible for paying or contributing to cost of treatment). Section 108 provides for the extent of VANZ’s responsibility to pay for or contribute to treatment, and provides decision-making criteria. The amendment ensures that section 108 applies to any counselling received by a person under new section 107(1A) (inserted by clause 17).

Clause 19 inserts new section 108A (urgent treatment of mental injury or illness). The new section allows VANZ to pay for or contribute to a veteran’s urgent treatment for mental injury or illness before accepting an application (as normally required by section 108(1)).

Clause 20 amends section 110 (application for additional treatment). Section 110 allows a veteran who is receiving treatment to ask VANZ to pay for or contribute towards additional treatment. The amendment extends this additional treatment facility to a person who is receiving counselling under new section 107(1)(b) (see the amendment to section 107 made by clause 17).

Clause 21 amends section 118 (assessment of needs and content of individual rehabilitation plan). The effect of the amendment is that a veteran’s individual rehabilitation plan will also identify the needs of a spouse or partner, or a child or dependant of the veteran, or any other person who is providing non-professional support to the veteran, in relation to the support they give to the veteran.

Clause 22 repeals section 139(2). The insertion of a definition of home in section 7 makes section 139(2) redundant.

Clause 23 amends section 143 (surviving spouse or partner). Under section 143, the surviving spouse or partner of a veteran who dies while receiving services and support under the veterans’ independence programme is entitled to continue receiving those services and support for a further 12 months. The effect of the amendment is that a spouse or partner does not have an entitlement under section 143 if they have an entitlement under new section 143A (inserted by clause 24).

Clause 24 inserts new section 143A, which—

  • provides that, if a veteran goes into long-term residential care while receiving services and support under the veterans’ independence programme, the spouse or partner of the veteran is entitled to continue receiving those services and support for a further 12 months:

  • addresses a situation where a veteran who goes into long-term residential care dies while in that care. The spouse or partner of the veteran will continue to receive services and support under this new section.

Clauses 25 to 27 make amendments to sections 152 to 154, which relate to entitlements to funeral expenses for deceased veterans. At present, section 153 applies to veterans whose death is due to qualifying service, while section 154 applies to veterans whose death is not due to qualifying service. As amended, section 153 continues to apply to veterans whose death is due to qualifying service but also applies to veterans who undertook qualifying operational service whether or not the death is proved to be attributable to the service; and section 154 applies to other deceased veterans (but only for the purposes of Scheme One).

Clause 28 amends section 170 (annual adjustment of rates of veteran’s pension). The effect of the amendments is that adjustments to the rates of a veteran’s pension are to be made by a notice published by VANZ rather than by regulations.

Clause 29 makes a minor amendment to section 173 (entitlement to veteran’s pension for spouses or partners of persons in long-term residential care in hospital or rest home) as a consequence of the insertion of the new definition of long-term residential care in section 7 by clause 5(4).

Clause 30 amends section 205 (VANZ may reconsider decision). Section 205(3) sets out reasons why VANZ may reconsider a decision made in the circumstances set out in section 205(2). New section 205(3)(d) authorises VANZ to reconsider a decision if new information that would have materially affected VANZ’s previous decision becomes available. Other amendments clarify the relationship between section 205(1) and (3).

Clause 31 amends section 265 (regulations) by removing references to regulations relating to adjustments to the rates of veterans’ pensions (see the amendment to section 170 made by clause 28).

Clause 32 makes the following amendments to Schedule 2 (entitlements):

  • subclause (1) repeals the definition of home in clause 7 of Schedule 2. Clause 5(4) inserts a definition of home in section 7 of the principal Act:

  • subclauses (2) and (4) amend clause 66 (duration of child care payments), replacing the current 5-year limit on child care payments with a limit determined by VANZ at its discretion, and subclauses (3) and (5) make minor consequential amendments to clause 66 and allow Schedule 2 of the principal Act to apply as usual to clause 66.

Hon Ron Mark

Veterans’ Support Amendment Bill (No 2)

Government Bill

232—1

Contents

Explanatory note
1Title
2Commencement
3Principal Act
4Section 3 amended (Purpose)
5Section 7 amended (Interpretation)
6Section 8 replaced (Meaning of different types of service)
8Meanings of different types of service
7Section 9 amended (Declarations that deployments are operational service)
8Section 10 amended (Functions to be performed and powers to be exercised in accordance with certain principles)
9Section 11 amended (VANZ to perform functions and exercise powers on reasonable grounds and in a timely manner)
10Section 27 amended (Responsibility of veteran or other claimant to assist in establishing and maintaining entitlements)
11Section 28 amended (Circumstances that exclude or limit entitlements)
12Section 29 replaced (Disentitlement during imprisonment)
29Limited entitlements during imprisonment of veteran
13Section 31 amended (Indexation of certain entitlements in relation to New Zealand Consumers Price Index)
14Section 66 replaced (Surviving spouse or partner pension)
66Surviving spouse or partner pension
15Section 81 amended (Entitlement to children’s bursary)
16New section 101A inserted (Entitlement to compensation ceases 28 days after veteran’s death)
101AEntitlement to compensation ceases 28 days after veteran’s death
17Section 107 amended (Treatment)
18Section 108 amended (Extent to which VANZ responsible for paying or contributing to cost of treatment)
19New section 108A inserted (Urgent treatment of mental injury or illness)
108AUrgent treatment of mental injury or illness
20Section 110 amended (Application for additional treatment)
21Section 118 amended (Assessment of needs and content of individual rehabilitation plan)
22Section 139 amended (Purpose of programme)
23Section 143 amended (Surviving spouse or partner)
24New section 143A inserted (Spouse or partner of veteran in long-term residential care)
143ASpouse or partner of veteran in long-term residential care
25Section 152 replaced (Application)
152Application
26Section 153 amended (Funeral expenses if death due to qualifying service)
27Section 154 amended (Funeral expenses if death not due to qualifying service)
28Section 170 amended (Annual adjustment of rates of veteran’s pension)
29Section 173 amended (Entitlement to veteran’s pension for spouses or partners of persons in long-term residential care in hospital or rest home)
30Section 205 amended (VANZ may reconsider decision)
31Section 265 amended (Regulations)
32Schedule 2 amended

The Parliament of New Zealand enacts as follows:

1 Title

This Act is the Veterans’ Support Amendment Act (No 2) 2020.

2 Commencement

This Act comes into force on 1 October 2020.

3 Principal Act

This Act amends the Veterans’ Support Act 2014 (the principal Act).

Part 1 Amendments to purpose, interpretation, and related provisions

4 Section 3 amended (Purpose)

Replace section 3(1)(c) with:

(c)

entitlements and support for eligible spouses, partners, children, and dependants of veterans with service-related injuries or illnesses and for other persons who provide non-professional support to those veterans.

5 Section 7 amended (Interpretation)

(1)

In section 7, definition of child, replace paragraph (b) with:

(b)

includes—

(i)

an adopted child of the veteran; and

(ii)

a child of whom the veteran is or has been a guardian; and

(iii)

a grandchild or a whāngai of the veteran in relation to whom the veteran acts or has acted as a parent or a guardian; and

(2)

In section 7, definition of child,—

(a)

paragraph (c)(i), replace “was” with “has been”; and

(b)

paragraph (c)(ii), replace “acted” with “acts or has acted”.

(3)

In section 7, replace the definition of other claimants with:

other claimants means—

(a)

persons who have served as members of the armed forces before 1 April 1974 and whose injury or illness was caused by, contributed to by, or aggravated by routine service in New Zealand or overseas; and

(b)

spouses or partners of veterans; and

(c)

children of veterans; and

(d)

dependants of veterans; and

(e)

persons (other than the spouse or partner, or a child or dependant, of the veteran) who provide non-professional support to veterans for the purposes of section 107

(4)

In section 7, definition of veteran, after paragraph (a), insert:

(aa)

a member of the armed forces who took part in qualifying routine service before 1 April 1974; or

(5)

In section 7, insert in their appropriate alphabetical order:

counselling means counselling that is—

(a)

provided by a health practitioner under the Health Practitioners Competence Assurance Act 2003 and that is within the practitioner’s scope of practice under that Act; or

(b)

provided by a person who is recognised by the Accident Compensation Corporation as a counsellor for the purposes of the Accident Compensation Act 2001

guardian has the same meaning as in section 15 of the Care of Children Act 2004

home

(a)

means residential premises in which the veteran lives and that are owned, rented, or otherwise lawfully occupied by the veteran or the veteran’s parent, guardian, spouse, or partner; and

(b)

includes residential premises in which the veteran proposes to live after they are built and that will be owned, rented, or otherwise lawfully occupied by the veteran or the veteran’s parent, guardian, spouse, or partner; and

(c)

includes any other premises in which the veteran lives and for which the veteran is solely responsible for home maintenance; but

(d)

does not include any hotel or motel, or any hospital, hostel, rest home, or other institution

long-term residential care has the same meaning as in section 11 of the Residential Care and Disability Support Services Act 2018

whāngai means a child adopted by the veteran in accordance with Māori custom

6 Section 8 replaced (Meaning of different types of service)

Replace section 8 with:

8 Meanings of different types of service

(1)

This section defines the different types of service referred to in this Act.

(2)

In this Act, unless the context otherwise requires,—

qualifying operational service means—

(a)

service on any deployment treated as a war or emergency for the purposes of the War Pensions Act 1954; or

(b)

service on any deployment declared to be operational service under section 9

qualifying routine service means service in the armed forces before 1 April 1974 that is not qualifying operational service

qualifying service means—

(a)

qualifying operational service; or

(b)

qualifying routine service.

7 Section 9 amended (Declarations that deployments are operational service)

(1)

In section 9(3), (5), and (5C), delete “, by notice in the Gazette,”.

(2)

After section 9(5E), insert:

(5F)

VANZ must publish the making or amending of a declaration—

(a)

on an Internet site maintained by or on behalf of VANZ; and

(b)

in any other manner that VANZ thinks appropriate to bring the matter to the attention of claimants and the general public.

(5G)

VANZ is not required to publish the making or amending of a declaration if satisfied that there are reasons of operational or national security not to publish.

8 Section 10 amended (Functions to be performed and powers to be exercised in accordance with certain principles)

Replace section 10(b)(i) with:

(i)

the principle of providing fair entitlements to veterans and other claimants:

9 Section 11 amended (VANZ to perform functions and exercise powers on reasonable grounds and in a timely manner)

Replace section 11(2) and (3) with:

(2)

VANZ—

(a)

is to be treated as responding to a claim in a timely manner if it makes a decision on the claim as soon as is reasonably practicable after receiving the claim; and

(b)

may wait for a veteran, other claimant, or any other person to provide further information that VANZ requires to determine whether to accept the claim.

Part 2 Amendments to other provisions

10 Section 27 amended (Responsibility of veteran or other claimant to assist in establishing and maintaining entitlements)

(1)

In section 27(1), after “A veteran”, insert “or other claimant”.

(2)

In section 27(1)(b), delete “veteran’s”.

11 Section 28 amended (Circumstances that exclude or limit entitlements)

(1)

After section 28(1), insert:

(1A)

Despite subsection (1), VANZ may provide entitlements that would otherwise be excluded by subsection (1)(a) or (b) if VANZ is satisfied on reasonable grounds that, in the circumstances, the exclusion would be unfair to the veteran (for example, because the desertion or absence without leave was brief or the offence was minor in nature).

(2)

In section 28(2), replace “subsection (1)(c) and (d)” with “subsection (1)(c) or (d)”.

(3)

After section 28(2)(a), insert:

(ab)

the illness is itself a psychological condition (for example, alcohol use disorder) that was attributed to or aggravated by the experiences of the veteran during qualifying operational service; or

12 Section 29 replaced (Disentitlement during imprisonment)

Replace section 29 with:

29 Limited entitlements during imprisonment of veteran

(1)

While a veteran is a prisoner in any prison, VANZ—

(a)

may provide entitlements to the veteran under subparts 2 and 3 of Part 5; but

(b)

must not provide any other entitlements to the veteran.

(2)

Entitlements of other claimants are not affected by the imprisonment of the veteran.

(3)

In this section,—

prison

(a)

has the same meaning as in section 3(1) of the Corrections Act 2004; and

(b)

includes—

(i)

a service prison within the meaning of section 2(1) of the Armed Forces Discipline Act 1971; and

(ii)

an overseas prison

prisoner has the same meaning as in section 3(1) of the Corrections Act 2004.

13 Section 31 amended (Indexation of certain entitlements in relation to New Zealand Consumers Price Index)

Replace section 31(1)(j) and (k) with:

(j)

the maximum amount payable for funeral expenses for—

(i)

a veteran who had undertaken qualifying operational service:

(ii)

a veteran whose death was a service-related death (section 153):

(k)

the maximum amount payable for funeral expenses for other veterans (section 154):

14 Section 66 replaced (Surviving spouse or partner pension)

Replace section 66 with:

66 Surviving spouse or partner pension

(1)

A spouse or partner of a deceased veteran is entitled, in accordance with this section, to a surviving spouse or partner pension at a rate specified in regulations made under section 265.

(2)

This section applies if—

(a)

the veteran had undertaken qualifying operational service; or

(b)

the veteran’s death was a service-related death; or

(c)

at the time of the veteran’s death, the veteran was receiving—

(i)

a permanent war disablement pension under Part 2 of the War Pensions Act 1954 in relation to disablement of 70% or more; or

(ii)

a permanent disablement pension granted under subpart 3 in relation to whole-person impairment of 52% or more; or

(d)

VANZ considers that, had the veteran not died, the veteran would have been eligible to receive a pension specified in paragraph (c) (to the extent of impairment specified) had he or she applied for it immediately before his or her death.

(3)

This section does not apply if, immediately before the veteran’s death,—

(a)

the veteran and the claimant were living apart or were not maintaining a relationship in the nature of marriage; and

(b)

the claimant was not contributing to the veteran’s day-to-day welfare.

(4)

Despite subsection (3), this section applies if the circumstances described in that subsection occurred principally because of the health, imprisonment, or employment obligations of the veteran or the claimant.

15 Section 81 amended (Entitlement to children’s bursary)

(1)

Replace section 81(1)(b) with:

(b)

full-time or part-time study with a tertiary education provider or an industry training organisation; or

(c)

if the child resides overseas, study overseas that is equivalent to the study described in paragraph (a) or (b).

(2)

Replace section 81(5) with:

(5)

In this section,—

industry training organisation has the same meaning as in section 2 of the Industry Training and Apprenticeships Act 1992

secondary school has the same meaning as in section 145(1) of the Education Act 1989

tertiary education provider has the same meaning as in section 159(1) of the Education Act 1989.

16 New section 101A inserted (Entitlement to compensation ceases 28 days after veteran’s death)

After section 101, insert:

101A Entitlement to compensation ceases 28 days after veteran’s death

When a veteran who is receiving weekly compensation dies, the entitlement to the compensation ceases at the end of the 28th day after the date on which the veteran dies.

17 Section 107 amended (Treatment)

(1)

After section 107(1), insert:

(1A)

In addition, VANZ is responsible for paying or contributing towards paying the cost of treatment in the form of counselling for—

(a)

the spouse or partner or any child or dependant of a veteran; or

(b)

a person (other than a veteran’s spouse, partner, child, or dependant) who provides non-professional support to a veteran.

(1B)

VANZ must pay or contribute under subsection (1A) if VANZ is satisfied that—

(a)

the veteran has an injury or illness that is service-related; and

(b)

a need for counselling arises from that injury or illness.

(2)

In section 107(2)(a) and (c), delete “veteran’s”.

18 Section 108 amended (Extent to which VANZ responsible for paying or contributing to cost of treatment)

After section 108(2), insert:

(3)

In addition, in making a decision about a claim for payment or a contribution under section 107(1A), VANZ must also take into account whether the claimant has a need for counselling arising from the veteran’s injury or illness.

19 New section 108A inserted (Urgent treatment of mental injury or illness)

After section 108, insert:

108A Urgent treatment of mental injury or illness

(1)

This section applies if—

(a)

an application has been made for payment or contribution towards payment of the costs of treatment of a veteran’s injury or illness under this subpart, including treatment for mental injury or illness; and

(b)

VANZ has not completed its consideration of the application; and

(c)

VANZ is satisfied that a delay in the provision of treatment for the mental injury or illness until the application is decided may have an adverse effect on the veteran.

(2)

Despite not having completed its consideration of the application, VANZ may pay or contribute towards paying the cost of treatment for the mental injury or illness.

(3)

Before deciding what treatment it will pay for or contribute towards paying for, VANZ must take into account the matters specified in section 108(2) (and, when applicable, section 108(3)).

20 Section 110 amended (Application for additional treatment)

(1)

Replace section 110(1) with:

(1)

This section applies if VANZ is paying or contributing towards paying the cost of treatment under this subpart.

(2)

In section 110(2), replace “veteran”, with “person receiving the treatment”.

21 Section 118 amended (Assessment of needs and content of individual rehabilitation plan)

After section 118(2)(a), insert:

(aa)

identify any support given to the veteran by the veteran’s spouse or partner, any child or dependant of the veteran, or any other person who provides non-professional support to the veteran, and the needs of any of those persons in relation to the support they give; and

22 Section 139 amended (Purpose of programme)

Repeal section 139(2).

23 Section 143 amended (Surviving spouse or partner)

After section 143(4), insert:

(5)

Subsection (4) does not apply to a spouse or partner who is receiving services and support under section 143A.

24 New section 143A inserted (Spouse or partner of veteran in long-term residential care)

After section 143, insert:

143A Spouse or partner of veteran in long-term residential care

(1)

This section applies to the spouse or partner of a veteran who—

(a)

is receiving or is entitled to services and support under the programme; and

(b)

goes into long-term residential care.

(2)

The veteran’s spouse or partner is entitled to services and support under the programme, to the same extent as the veteran was entitled, for 12 months after the veteran goes into long-term residential care.

(3)

The veteran’s spouse or partner continues to be entitled to services and support under subsection (2) if the veteran dies within 12 months after going into long-term residential care.

25 Section 152 replaced (Application)

Replace section 152 with:

152 Application

(1)

Section 153 applies in relation to the death of a veteran if—

(a)

the veteran had undertaken qualifying operational service; or

(b)

the veteran’s death was a service-related death.

(2)

Section 154 applies to the death of other veterans.

26 Section 153 amended (Funeral expenses if death due to qualifying service)

Replace the heading to section 153 with Funeral expenses: veterans with qualifying operational service or service-related death.

27 Section 154 amended (Funeral expenses if death not due to qualifying service)

(1)

Replace the heading to section 154 with Funeral expenses: other deceased veterans (Scheme One only).

(2)

In section 154(1), replace “whose death is not attributable to qualifying service” with “to whom section 153 does not apply”.

(3)

Repeal section 154(2)(a)(ii) and (b)(ii).

28 Section 170 amended (Annual adjustment of rates of veteran’s pension)

(1)

In section 170(1), replace “regulations made under section 265” with “a notice published by VANZ in accordance with this section”.

(2)

In section 170(7), replace “Any regulations made in accordance with subsection (1)” with “For the purposes of subsection (1), the notice”.

(3)

After section 170(7)(c), insert:

(d)

must be published—

(i)

on an Internet site maintained by or on behalf of VANZ; and

(ii)

in any other manner that VANZ thinks appropriate to bring the adjustments to the attention of claimants and the general public.

29 Section 173 amended (Entitlement to veteran’s pension for spouses or partners of persons in long-term residential care in hospital or rest home)

(1)

In the heading to section 173, delete in hospital or rest home.

(2)

In section 173(1)(a), delete “in a hospital or rest home”.

30 Section 205 amended (VANZ may reconsider decision)

(1)

In section 205(2), replace “Subsection (3)” with “This section”.

(2)

In section 205(3), before “VANZ may reconsider”, insert “Without limiting subsection (1),”.

(3)

After section 205(3)(c), insert:

(d)

VANZ receives new information and, if that information had been received before the decision was made, it would have materially affected the decision.

31 Section 265 amended (Regulations)

Repeal section 265(1)(29).

32 Schedule 2 amended

(1)

In Schedule 2, clause 7, repeal the definition of home.

(2)

In Schedule 2, replace clause 66(2)(a) with:

(a)

a date determined by VANZ, at its discretion, having regard to the matters set out in subclause (2A); and

(3)

In Schedule 2, clause 66(2)(b), replace “on the date” with “the date”.

(4)

In Schedule 2, after clause 66(2), insert:

(2A)

VANZ must have regard to—

(a)

whether the surviving parent or carer of the veteran’s child is employed; and

(b)

whether the surviving parent or carer of the child has a new spouse or partner; and

(c)

the number of the veteran’s children; and

(d)

where the child or children live, including the accessibility of organised child care; and

(e)

other relevant circumstances of the family, including whether extended family is able to provide child care.

(5)

In Schedule 2, repeal clause 66(4) and (5).