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What are the application procedures and the payment arrangement for Old Age Allowance?

Social Welfare Department




Persons unfit to apply

If an applicant has been medically certified to be unfit to make a statement on his/her own, an appointee will be appointed by the Director of Social Welfare to act on his/her behalf.  Please contact Social Security Field Units for details.  

Documents required

Please return the completed application form together with photocopies of the following supporting documents:

  1. Any documents confirming the applicant’s identity, age and residence in Hong Kong (e.g. Hong Kong Identity Card, Birth Certificate, etc.)
  2. Bank passbook (the page showing the account name and account number) of the applicant (only sole and not joint accounts are acceptable for payment purposes)
  3. The pages showing the absence record during the one-year period immediately before the application and the personal particulars in the applicant’s travel documents (e.g. Passport, HKSAR Document of Identity for Visa Purposes, etc.)

Application procedures

  • The applicant or his/her relative/friend can make an application directly to a social security field unit near to his/her place of residence by phone, by fax, by post, by e-mail, or in person, etc. An application can also be made through a referral to SWD by another government department or non-governmental organisation.
  • Application form can be downloaded from the SWD’s website.  Please return the completed application form together with photocopies of relevant documents to social security field unit by post or in person. Applicant, who is an "iAM Smart+" account owner with digital signing function enabled, can fill in and submit the online form directly. The online form is available at SWD's website.
  • As soon as the relevant materials are received, an officer of SWD will make arrangements for an interview with the applicant.
  • All the application procedures are to be processed in Hong Kong.

Notification of result of application, payment method and permissible limits of absence from Hong Kong during receipt of allowance

  • After completion of investigation, a formal notification letter will be sent to the applicant.
  • Old Age Allowance payment will be calculated from the date of receipt of the application by SWD (or the date of application or referral if the application is referred by another organization) or the date of eligibility, whichever is the later. The Payment is usually credited to the applicant’s/ appointee’s designated bank account once a month. Under exceptional circumstances, special delivery of cash directly to the applicant can be arranged.
  • Where a Social Security Allowance recipient has resided in Hong Kong for not less than 60 days in a payment year, his/her temporary absences from Hong Kong (i.e. leaving Hong Kong for the Mainland, Macau or overseas countries/territories) will not affect the payment of allowance on condition that the total number of days of absence in the year does not exceed 305 days (or 306 days in a leap year). A Social Security Allowance recipient will be entitled to a full year allowance if he/she satisfies the minimum residence period of 60 days in a payment year. The above arrangements are applicable to Social Security Allowance recipients with payment years ending, or taking effect, on or after 1 February 2011. 
  • If a Social Security Allowance recipient has resided in Hong Kong for less than 60 days in a payment year, he/she is not entitled to any absence allowance in that year. In other words, he/she is eligible to receive allowance only for the periods during which he/she has resided in Hong Kong. Please click here for details.
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Last update: 1 Sep 2022
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