Medicare Levy Surcharge (MLS) Income Threshold

Why hasn't the MLS income threshold risen in over 7 years?

Static tax thresholds are a tax on the poor.

It also encourages people to sign up for "phantom" (bare minimum) private insurance packages that they don't plan to use and its only purpose is to evade the MLS.

Reckon maybe some MPs have some "vested interest" in private insurance companies? Like they do with negative gearing and investment properties…

These levy thresholds should be tied to CPI to be fair for everyone.

Anyway to lobby for this to get changed?


  • Anyway to lobby for this to get changed?

    Arrange a meeting with your local federal MP

  • Static tax thresholds are a tax on the poor.

    $90,000 a year is poor?

  • Thought it's based on some sort of benchmark? since MLS isn't the only one using that number.
    all the lines drawn around 180k household income, I only recently start seeing it's increasing to 200k for some instances.

    For MLS in general, many talks about remove MLS exemption for PHI while PHI industry talks about removing Medicare (LOL)
    Politicians are hush hush about it - guess they don't wanna destroy the industry and make many jobless from there.

    • Dont know about benchmark, but the threshold has been increased approximately biannually until 2014. Then it stopped and hasnt moved since.

  • I don't know the answer, but there are multiple levers that can be adjusted. For example the private health insurance rebate amount has been adjusted and is adjusted annually. Without going into the details it's hard to say if it's driving the right outcomes. The cost of medical care is also subject to inflation, does that mean keeping the MLS at the same level it cancels out?

    I don't think insurance will ever be perceived as 'fair' by everyone. Every year my insurer sends out some stats of average payouts along with then notice of premium increases for the next year. Every year I look at the categories and think the amounts are too high and I would never use those services. Then I pay the premiums after doing a quick comparison.

    • It does not cancel out because the levy surcharge amount is constant ie: 1%-2%. Therefore if both salary and medical costs increase at exactly CPI rate, everything should balance out.

    • That's because the whole idea is for the young people to support mainly the elderly who tend to have higher medical expenses, and make bigger claims. I bet if they disclosed the age group claiming there would be no surprise there.

  • Static tax thresholds are a tax on the poor.

    Can you please explain how those that satisfy the criteria for MLS are 'poor'?

    MLS is the definition of taxing the rich.
    - It doesn't apply to the those below $90k
    - It (the rate) increases as you earn more despite being less likely to use those services.
    - The Health Care rebate cuts out the more you earn.
    - Those on lower incomes are more likely to use health services yet pay less Medicare Levy and in fact get exemptions or reductions.

    • Like i mentioned above, $90,000 is NOT rich.

      • $90k is not rich.

        However it is not poor either.

        $90k is above the Australian average wage which is above the median wage.

        If you are on $90k you are doing better than most.

  • Absolute joke of a policy thought up by Private health lobbyists to help their industry which is literally on life support if this wasn't a thing.

    At the end of the day Private health is another mode for those working to subsidise health for pensioners.

    As if trying to buy a house wasn't hard enough, you now get to subsidise the health costs for those that already have a house. It's just another transfer of wealth.

    Everyone wins except those taking out the trash private health schemes.

    • I have been on the base (bare minimum) private health plan for over 10 years just to avoid the MLS and have not used it once for anything. I still use the public system because its cheaper and better.

      • Same here. I'm very bitter about the MLS and the LHC. Feels like we are slowly moving to a USA style health care system. Neo-liberaism doesn't work for essential services.

    • Welcome to crony capitalism! We're working hard to become like USA everyday. Please continue to support one of only two choices in Australia. Ignore the minor party crazies in favour of continuing to boil Australia instead! Don't worry, we are making it harder for crazies to get elected. Welcome to crony capitalism. We're …