Travel outside Australia

There are rules about how long we can pay your Family Tax Benefit when you travel outside Australia. The rules also apply if your dependent children go overseas.

What the rules are

If you or your children leave Australia to live in another country, your payment will stop on departure.

If you or your children leave Australia on a temporary basis, you’ll normally still get your payment. But only for up to 6 weeks. This includes if your child is studying outside Australia.

After 6 weeks, your Family Tax Benefit (FTB) Part A and Part B will stop.

Your FTB will stop on departure if all of these apply. You or your children:

  • are overseas for longer than 6 weeks
  • return to Australia
  • leave again within 6 weeks.

You may be eligible for an extension of your FTB for up to 3 years if you’re either:

  • a member of the Australian Defence Force deployed overseas
  • a member of the Australian Federal Police engaged in peacekeeping or capacity building activities overseas.

We normally can’t pay you overseas if you hold 1 of the following visas:

  • a Partner Provisional visa subclass 309 or visa subclass 820
  • a Safe Haven Enterprise visa subclass 790
  • a Temporary Protection visa subclass 785 issued on or after 16 December 2014.

If you hold 1 of these visas, we may pay you overseas for up to 6 weeks. This is only if you’re overseas for 1 of the following approved reasons:

  • to attend an acute family crisis – for example, to visit a critically ill family member
  • for humanitarian reasons – for example, to adopt a child or attend custody proceedings
  • to receive eligible medical treatment not available in Australia.

We can’t pay most temporary protection type visa holders FTB Part A or Part B outside Australia for any reason.

When to tell us about your travel

You should tell us if you or your children are leaving Australia for any of the following reasons. You:

  • are going to live in another country
  • will be away for more than 6 weeks
  • have not been back in Australia for 6 weeks since your last return
  • hold a partner provisional visa or temporary protection type visa.

Otherwise, you don't need to tell us that you or your children are leaving Australia. Australia's immigration department will advise us when you or your children leave and return to Australia.

The easiest way to tell us about your travel plans is to use your Centrelink online account through myGov. You can get information on how your travel could affect your payments and concession cards. You may need to call us to discuss your circumstances further.

Read more about payments while outside Australia.

Page last updated: 24 January 2020