New Zealand citizens claiming payments in Australia

If you are a New Zealand citizen, you must meet certain criteria to be eligible for our payments in Australia.

Residence requirements

If you arrive in Australia on a New Zealand passport, you will generally be issued a Special Category visa (SCV) on arrival.

To qualify for most Centrelink payments, you must satisfy residence requirements. Usually, this means you must be an Australian resident.

Protected SCV holders qualify as Australian residents and can generally access the full range of Centrelink payments provided:

  • they are currently living in Australia, and
  • satisfy certain rules such as qualification criteria and relevant waiting periods

Payments that can be claimed if you are a New Zealand citizen

Whether you are a protected or non-protected SCV holder, you will still be able to claim these payments or cards as long as you are living in Australia:

You will have to meet all other eligibility requirements for these payments or cards. For concession cards this may include the Newly Arrived Resident’s Waiting Period.

You will also have access to employment services provided through jobactive that includes reasonable access to computers, newspapers and other facilities to help you look for work.

If you are a non-protected Special Category visa (SCV) holder, you may be able to access a one-off period of payment of:

At the time of making a claim, you must have been living in Australia continuously for at least 10 years. Time spent in Australia before 27 February 2001 cannot count towards these 10 years. If you are eligible, you can receive the payment for up to 6 consecutive months.

You may be able to claim the following payments under the International Social Security Agreement between Australia and New Zealand:

Under this agreement, you might need to satisfy special conditions.

Page last updated: 25 January 2016