Government Benefits – NZ and Australia

We all need some help sometimes! Whether it’s because you’ve been injured, just had a baby or can’t work anymore, most of the time the government is able to “fill the gap” until you’re back on your feet. But when you leave New Zealand, this might not be the case. Australia has some complicated rules surrounding payment of benefits to non-citizens, and it will depend on your visa/residency status to figure out what you’re eligible for.

Keep in mind that you may be able to continue to claim benefits in New Zealand that you were already receiving for up to 26 weeks after you leave! This can make your transition to life in Australia easier, but make sure to check with the relevant government department before you leave.

You may also be able to continue to receive New Zealand benefits while in Australia, or New Zealand may meet part of your entitlements while Australia meets the remainder – it all depends on your personal circumstances. This doesn’t include the Jobseeker Support or Emergency Benefit, the Young Parent Payment, or the Sole Parent Support payment.

Ultimately though, you may find it difficult to get assistance from the Australian government – they have some fairly rigid rules and requirements for receiving benefits from Centrelink. So it’s important to be well informed and prepared when applying – a little knowledge can be a powerful thing, especially when it comes to knowing your entitlements and what you’re eligible for. And hopefully, we can put you on the right track!