Newly arrived resident's waiting period

If you've recently arrived as a resident in Australia, you may have to wait to get payments or concession cards.

Waiting period

The newly arrived resident’s waiting period (NARWP) is time spent in Australia as an Australian resident. This means, if you travel overseas, the time you’re away from Australia won’t count towards the waiting period.

New residents may have to wait up to 4 years before they can:

  • get most of our payments
  • use most of our services.

A maximum 2 year waiting period applies if you’re the holder of either:

  • an Orphan Relative visa (subclass 117 or 837)
  • a Remaining Relative visa (subclass 115 and 835).

Holders of permanent residence visa or specified visa subclass granted after 1 January 2019

If you got your permanent residence visa or specified visa subclass on or after 1 January 2019, the following waiting periods apply.

4 year waiting period

There’s a 4 year waiting period for the following payments and concessions:

2 year waiting period

There’s a 2 year waiting period for the following payments:

You may be an Australian citizen and started living in Australia for the first time. In this case there’s a 2 year waiting period for Parenting Payment single and partnered.

1 year waiting period

There’s a 1 year waiting period for:

There’s no waiting period for Family Tax Benefit Part B.

Holders of visas granted before 1 January 2019 and Orphan Relative / Remaining Relative visas

If you got your permanent residence visa or specified visa subclass before 1 January 2019, there’s a 2 year waiting period. It applies to the following payments and concessions:

You won’t have to serve the newly arrived resident's waiting period for any of these:

New Zealand visa waiting periods

You may need to have a permanent residence visa before we can look at time you've spent in Australia. This will happen if you arrive on a New Zealand passport with a Special Category visa.

You don’t need a permanent residence visa to claim any of these:

Read more about New Zealand citizens claiming payments in Australia.

Proposed changes to this policy

In May 2021, the Australian Government said it wanted to change the law for migrants who’d been granted a relevant permanent or temporary visa on or after 1 July 2022.

If Australia adopts these new laws, newly arrived residents will have to wait 4 years before they can get carer payments and family payments.

Read more about the proposed changes to the Newly Arrived Resident’s Waiting Period from 1 January 2022 on the Department of Social Services website.

Access to some of our services and payments

If you have a waiting period, you can still use some of our services.

You can use the:

The Community Development Program may help you if you live in a remote area. It’s run by the National Indigenous Australians Agency.

You may have lived in a country that has a social security agreement with Australia. In this case you may be eligible for one of these payments:

Page last updated: 3 December 2021