Skip links

Australia Reciprocal Social Security Agreements

Australia Reciprocal Social Security Agreements: What You Need to Know

As a global citizen, it’s essential to know how to protect yourself when it comes to social security benefits when you live and work overseas. Fortunately, many countries have reciprocal social security agreements with Australia that allow individuals to access certain benefits while living abroad.

In this article, we’ll explore everything you need to know about Australia’s reciprocal social security agreements. From the basics of what these agreements are to how they protect you and your family, we’ll provide you with a comprehensive overview.

What are Reciprocal Social Security Agreements?

Reciprocal social security agreements are bilateral agreements between countries that coordinate social security systems. Their primary goal is to prevent people from being subject to double taxation or losing social security entitlements when they move from one country to another.

These agreements ensure that workers are subject to the social security system of only one country at a time, depending on where they reside and where they have worked. This means that you can continue to accumulate social security entitlements in Australia, even if you’re living and working in another country with which Australia has a reciprocal agreement.

Which Countries Have Reciprocal Social Security Agreements with Australia?

Australia currently has reciprocal social security agreements with over 30 countries worldwide, including:

– Austria

– Belgium

– Canada

– Chile

– Croatia

– Cyprus

– Czech Republic

– Denmark

– Finland

– France

– Germany

– Greece

– Hungary

– India

– Ireland

– Italy

– Japan

– Korea, Republic of (South)

– Latvia

– Malta

– Netherlands

– New Zealand

– Norway

– Poland

– Portugal

– Slovak Republic

– Slovenia

– Spain

– Switzerland

– United Kingdom

– United States of America

– Uruguay

These agreements cover various benefits, such as age and disability pensions, family benefits, and health care.

How Do Reciprocal Social Security Agreements Help You?

If you’re an Australian citizen who is living and working in a country that has a reciprocal social security agreement with Australia, you can access certain benefits. These benefits include:

1. Age pension: If you’re eligible for an Australian age pension, but you’re living overseas, you can still receive a portion of your pension payments through your local social security system.

2. Disability support pension: If you’re eligible for disability support pension in Australia and living overseas, you can continue to receive payments through your local social security system.

3. Family benefits: If you have dependent children and you’re eligible for family benefits in Australia, you can receive these payments while living overseas if the country you’re living in has a reciprocal agreement with Australia.

4. Health care: If you’re eligible for Medicare in Australia, you may be able to receive subsidized health care while living overseas if the country you’re living in has a reciprocal agreement with Australia.

How to Apply for Benefits

To apply for benefits under a reciprocal social security agreement, you’ll need to contact the social security system of the country where you’re living and working. They will be able to provide you with information on how to apply and what documentation you’ll need to provide.

It’s important to note that not all benefits are covered under each agreement, so be sure to check the specific details of the agreement between Australia and the country where you’re living.


Reciprocal social security agreements offer significant benefits to people who are living and working overseas, allowing them to continue to access social security entitlements they would have received if they were still living in Australia. If you’re planning on moving overseas, it’s essential to do your research and understand what benefits are available to you, and how to apply for them.

By leveraging the information in this article, you’ll be able to effectively navigate the complex world of reciprocal social security agreements and make the most of your benefits, no matter where you are in the world.