Assistance for the Families of Lateral Transferees to ADF

New Lateral Transfer Officer

Historically the ADF has recruited skilled mature defence force members from other countries and their families often accompany these members. With the announced increase in Defence personnel numbers this tradition will continue and in line with DFA’s primary aim to improve the quality of life of all Defence families, DFA is pleased to announce the appointment of a Lateral Transfer Officer to provide advice and support for families coming to Australia* as well supporting DFA’s primary aims. Over the coming months we will be working with her to populate our website with information to assist lateral recruits coming to Australia and those already here. Our Lateral Transfer Officer can be emailed at the following address, or look for her details on our website.


* Due to the voluntary nature of the Delegate’s role, individual advice and support can only be offered to those families who have completed the visa process.

As you can see from the above I have been appointed to assist families who are transferring to the ADF. The role is very new and I hope to talk to as many lateral families already in Australia to see what your experiences have been and what advice you would give to others transferring.
DFA would like to publish that advice on our website, either as general information or location specific.
DFA will then go on to discuss the obstacles, inconsistencies and problems Lateral Families face with Minister for Defence Personnel, Material and Science, the Chief of Defence Force, other senior Defence personnel, stakeholders such as Defence Housing Australia and others as required.

Please do PM me, email me or just register on the DFA website.

There seems to be some suspicion about the Defence Families of Australia and me. We both are above board; my new role was announced in the winter issue of Defence Family Matters.

I am a ‘spouse of’ , not a member of the ADF, and this role is totally voluntary – I do not get paid a cent and do not require any monies from you.

DFA is a little like AFF, but tri-service and we only have 2 paid positions!

I took this role on after meeting so many Lateral Transfer Families who had experiences and advice that would have really helped to know before we made our move over here.
So the first part of my role to try to gather as much of this information and make is accessible to all Families coming over here.
The second part is to look at the support systems that are (or not) in place for Lateral Families when they arrive and for DFA to work with all the various agencies to ensure every Lateral Family get the support they want.
Finally there are various procedure and legal problems that Lateral Families encounter that DFA will highlight to the Minister responsible for Defence Personnel and the Chief of the Defence Force (CDF).

While my boundaries are that I can only give help to individuals who have completed the visa process, I will try to post regular updates about new information on DFA website, you need to register on the website (no fee) and there is a wealth of information already on it, including links to PACMAN which is the ADF pay/benefits/allowances regulations.
Morning or Afternoon,

You are most welcome on this forum your initiative is a cracking idea which I am sure we will all come to appreciate. Don't worry about us lot we are a suspicious bunch. If you ever have the time have a look around the website and you will see why. With it being an open forum you have everyone from Journo's to Jihadi's having their say looking for quotes and clips for their own publications.

I have seen the website and will register now and look forward to no doubt asking for some help in the future.

Do you know if your information will be passed out via SCMA that would aid in dissemination for those not on ArRse and confirm your ID to those rightly sceptical and cumudgeonly chaps.
Oh and I can confirm that DFA_Lateral_Transfer is exactly who they claim to be. This method of 'outreach' seems like a cracking idea by them ...... something our own MoD could probably learn from!
Hi Camilla,
The main thing we found lacking was the ability to house hunt on the DHA site. ADF members access the site by using their PMKeyS number and a password from DHA, we couldn't get a password as we didn't have a PMKeyS number.
Some people who arrived at the same time managed to access the site by using a guest login, DHA in Darwin couldn't (or wouldn't) do this. It was a small matter and we had a house after about a week, but it would have been nice to have a browse while we were waiting to leave UK.
Nige interesting you should say that I have just tryed logging on the DHA site to see what the score was. Far to early to house hunt but a browse would be nice for planning purposes. The site does suggest that I could be send a pass key or some such when my posting order comes through.

A guest account for laterals for viewing only purposes would be ideal!
I am sorry if people have been waiting for a reply from me, the internet in Sydney is working at 40% reduction due to someone jack hammering through one of the major fiber optic cables! Please do use my email address instead –

I am looking into the PMkeYs issue, all 3 Services do it differently - some people get theirs 6 weeks before departing UK.

I sent this to Mrs Loggie but you all might find it helpful

I am not sure if you are going to work but you might want to look at SWAPP as they can also help with getting your UK qualifications 'translated' into Australian ones! You can also just use the money for training - you do not have to get a job to qualify for the money.
Please please do use this there were only 415 claims against SWAPP last year and that was for the WHOLE of the ADF – use it or loose it.

Debbie is an ADF spouse and SWAPP provider, she is more than happy for you to just drop her a line, even before you apply for funding.

You might also want to look through the ADF Financial Services Consumer Council might be a bit basic put does explain car insurance and personal insurance quite well.
The budget planner is good as it highlights those things we don't have to pay for in UK like Health Insurance.

Best of luck with the packing, I would advise that you read the AQIS guidelines really closely, they are very strict
The shippers should do all of the paperwork, but we were advised to do the following - clean everything that has been outside with-in an inch of it's life, we hired a pressure washer for the weekend and OH blasted the BBQ, bikes, garden tools, I had to bring the dogs inside for their own safety!

We (me!) scrubbed the bottom of every pair of shoes / boots with a toothbrush and OH cleaned them Army style! We then put each pair into a sealed bag..friends suggested a heat sealer thing
but I just grabbed some bags from work.
Anything else that was on the AQIS list we also cleaned and sealed in plastic - like leather dogs leads, wicker baskets and leather riding chaps. All of these we then packed in 2 or 3 boxes listed the items on the outside and marked them up as quarantine items and it seemed to work as we did not have anything destroyed! Xmas decorations seem to be a real favorite for AQIS to burn! – sorry destroy!

If you would like to email me I can send you a sneak preview some hints & tips, that will be published on the DFA website.

I am not sure if it has already been mentioned but the ADF and most of Australia go on summer leave from about the 19th Dec and are not back until the 27th Jan..think of BFG in August! so if you need stuff confirmed etc. I would suggest that you have all done by the 14th Dec.

Also try to get Canberra to issue you a PMKeYs number before you leave UK, the Navy get theirs 6 weeks before departing UK it is your ADF service number and it allows you to access DHA Homefind and other stuff.

Best of luck and hopefully meet up when you get here

From DFA October 2009 E bulletin
Update from Lateral Transfer Officer

I would like to say a big THANK YOU to everyone who has contacted me so
far, your support for this role has been great and I look forward to meeting
more of you. What have I been doing?

Citizenship - I have written a paper that was discussed at the DFA annual
conference about the problems spouses and children, 16yrs and over,
encounter having to wait 4 years for citizenship. Minister Combet is aware of
the inconsistencies and it is hoped that these will be addressed as part of
Senator Evans, Minister for Immigration, amendments to the Immigration Act
2007. If you have had problems due to your citizenship please do contact me.

Questionnaire - A Lateral Families questionnaire will soon be available via
the DFA website. The answers and advice will form part of the information
available on the DFA website. Along with visiting various bases to talk to
Lateral Transfer Families about their experiences the questionnaire
information will be used to highlight ‘problem areas’.

If you have a group of Lateral Transfer families at your base and would like to
talk to me about your experiences, please email

Support and Information - I have also met with the Lateral Recruitment
Officers for all three services, DCO, ADFFCC, they also have been very
supportive of this role and we are working together to look at what and how
information is supplied to Lateral Transfer Families.

Just in case you thought I was lying on the beach topping up my tan!

Sorry about the length of this post, but it might be of some help for spouses wanting to work in Australia.

ABN – means Australian Business Number

List of occupations and the assessing bodies for overseas-trained professionals.

CPA Australia
ABN 64 008 392 452
All States and Territories

Institute of Chartered Accountants in Australia
ABN 50 084 642 571
All States and Territories

National Institute of Accountants
ABN 81 004 130 643
All States and Territories

Architects Accreditation Council of Australia
ABN 83 465 163 655
All States and Territories

Cadastral Surveyors
Institution of Surveyors, Australia
ABN 39 917 817 054
All States and Territories

Australian Dental Council
ABN 70 072 269 900
All States and Territories

Dietitians Association of Australia
ABN 34 008 521 480
All States and Territories

Legal Practitioners
- Barristers
- Solicitors

Legal Profession Admission Board
ABN 50 581 255 931

Legal Practitioners Admission Board

Legal Practitioners Admissions Board

Legal Practitioners Admissions Board
ABN 53 925 175 583

Board of Examiners C/- Legal Practitioners’ Registry
ABN 16 305 983 353

Board of Legal Education

Council of Legal Education

The Legal Practitioners Admission Board
ABN 23 127 312 585

Medical Practitioners (General)
Australian Medical Council
ABN 19 814 243 263
All States and Territories

Nuclear Medicine Technologists
Australian and New Zealand Society of Nuclear Medicine
ABN 42 512 102 604
All States and Territories

Occupational Therapists
Council of Occupational Therapists Registration Boards
(Australia & New Zealand) Inc
ABN 50 377 833 627
All States and Territories

Optometry Council of Australia and New Zealand
ABN 38 074 875 111
All States and Territories

Australian Pharmacy Council
ABN 45 568 153 354
All States and Territories

Australian Physiotherapy Council
ABN 28 108 663 896
All States and Territories

Australasian Podiatry Council
ABN 24 008 488 748
All States and Territories

Australian Institute of Radiography
ABN 26 924 779 836

All States and Territories - Registered Nurses
ACT Nursing and Midwifery Board
ABN 79 033 475 573

Nursing and Midwives Board of New South Wales
ABN 41 356 382 097

Nursing and Midwifery Board of the Northern Territory
ABN 43 327 327 719

Queensland Nursing Council
ABN 31 518 972 839

Nurses Board of South Australia
ABN 61 964 469 696

Nursing Board of Tasmania
ABN 33 786 914 844

Nurses Board of Victoria
ABN 96 394 267 286

Nurses and Midwives Board of Western Australia
ABN 70 013 199 477

School Teachers
ACT Department of Education and Training
ABN 71 506 957 312

NSW Institute of Teachers
ABN 82 075 742 456

Queensland College of Teaching
ABN 49 750 572 133

Teacher Registration Board of the Northern Territory
ABN 84 085 734 992
Teachers Registration Board of South Australia
ABN 18 376 765 315

Tasmania Teachers Registration Board
ABN 26 237 631 294

Victorian Institute of Teaching
ABN 12 386 253 536

Western Australian College of Teaching
ABN 81 079 785 270

Social Workers
Australian Association of Social Workers
ABN 93 008 576 010
All States and Territories

Speech Pathologists
Speech Pathology Australia
ABN 17 008 393 440
All States and Territories

Australasian Veterinary Boards Council Inc
ABN 49 337 540 469
All States and Territories
Hi, hope you are all well.

As I prepare for my first talk at the RAN lateral entry course I am putting together an information pack. If they don't end up in the bin at the end of the day - I will see if they can be sent out via the various lateral desks in Canberra to you.

One website you might want to look at in your spare :lol: time deals with private health insurance.

Registration Fees for Spouses

OK, have had this clarified.

Under the SWAPP programme there is a Professional Registration Expense Payment bit. If you are required to registered with an Australian professional body in order to work in your profession in Australia, you can claim back the fees for your registration, the cost of copying and certifying of any documents you have to submit for registration, the cost of a Police check (if required) and postage of it all to Australia.

You will need to submit a receipt for everything you claim for and provide proof that you were working in that profession in UK.

If you incur further costs – i.e. a full certification following a year with a preliminary certification, again these can be claimed with receipts.

If you do a course in UK in order to ‘qualify’ to work in Australia in your profession you can claim these fees back from SWAPP. However you must make a claim to SWAPP before you start the course and they require a posting order to ‘prove’ that you are coming to Australia.

I hope this helps. If you have any problems or questions please do email me.


Put this together for Adey but again thought it might be useful for all

I cannot say that you must see a financial advisor or suggest a firm but it is the one area where laterals can get themselves into a pickle.

There are all sorts of various rules, two tax systems…plus the fact that the ADF make a lump sum payment into your Superannuation fund, depending on where you are posted you need to consider Health Insurance, Uni fees for kids, life insurance, bringing a lump sum into Oz, your and the OH’s UK State pension, the fact that the ADF member gets citizenship after 90 days while spouse and children over 16 have to wait 4 yrs, etc.etc.

For who is recommended I would suggest that you try the following websites and have a look at the finance topic boards

There is one firm, whom offer free advice sheets,

While the stuff is a little basic the ADF Financial Services Consumer Council has some budget sheets, info on insurance etc. DFA are working with them to try to tailor an information pack for Laterals so any feedback would be great.

For health care, this is the link to the Government website, the guide is quite good at explaining the various tax breaks etc.

There is also a scheme here called Salary Sacrifice

Hopefully this will give you enough info to ask potential advisors the right questions and know when they don’t have a clue !

Human Resources Professionals

If you are looking to work in HR here in Australia, please PM or email me I have an info sheet put together by a Lateral Spouse on registration etc.

Dear All

There seems to be some confusion about applications for citizenship, etc. I hope the following helps:

Under section 23 The Australian Citizenship Act 2007

ADF members qualify for citizenship after 90 days service with the ADF.

Under section 46 (2A)

Children who are under 16 may also apply for citizenship when responsible parent for that child makes an application for citizenship. The child must be under 16 at the time of application.

ADF members are required to sit the citizenship test, but this can be done before completing the 90 days service. In some areas there are waiting lists for sitting the tests so I would advise to book early!

Once you (and the kids) become citizens you need to apply for your Australian passports.

Spouses and children 16yrs & over are permanent residents and must complete lawful residence before qualifying for citizenship.

The new residence requirements apply to people who become permanent residents on or after 1 July 2007.

The new residence requirements for Australian citizenship in the Australian Citizenship Act 2007 mean that applicants will need:

* four (4) years lawful residence in Australia immediately prior to making an application for Australian citizenship with at least 12 months as a permanent resident, and

* absences from Australia of no more than 12 months in total in the four (4) years prior to application, and no more than ninety (90) days in the 12 month permanent residency period prior to application.

The Department of Immigration keeps track of the days permanent resident visa holders spend out of the country and will issue a warning letter if they think you are spending too much time out of the country.

DFA are working to get the legislation changed so that spouses and children 16yrs & over gain citizenship with the ADF member, so I’ll keep you posted.

There seems to be some confusion over Private Health Insurance, I have a meeting lined up with Defence Health to discuss Lateral Transfer Families so will get back to you when I have some information.

In the mean time those of you who are posted to Darwin, including Alice Springs and Nhulunbuy (NT), Broome and Kununurra (WA), Townsville, including Tully (QLD), and Puckapunyal (VIC) might find the information on the information on the DFA website useful go to Resources on the main menu, then Key Programs for Families ADF Dependant Health Care Program is second on the list.
Hope this helps
This information come curtsey of the Families Liaison Officer for Defence Community Organisation in Darwin. She is a lateral herself, so if you have any Darwinny (?) type questions do try her.

Written and complied by:

Eike Pakeha

Manager Academic Process Improvement

Charles Darwin University


Phone: 08 8946 6180 Fax: 08 89466 928

As just discussed, find below some information that the parent/children of the Defence Personnel coming from the UK might find useful.
Feel free to use/give them my contact details if they have any specific inquiries about fees, entrance to course and how it all works in the Australian Higher Education (HE) system (the processes for HECS are identical at all Australian Universities, they may differ slightly when it comes to Admission and Enrolment into courses. No doubt being new in a country can be tricky for some, and systems may be confusing – so yes, tell them I am happy to respond to individual queries.

The Australian HE system differs quite substantially from the UK one.
In a nutshell

1) In the Australian higher education system, Australian citizens, New Zealand citizens and the holders of an Australian permanent visa are classified as ‘domestic students’.
2) Commonwealth supported students are generally required to contribute to the cost of their higher education through a student contribution.
3) The Australian Government also contributes to part of the cost.
4) The Higher Education Loan Program (HELP) allows eligible students to receive a discount of 20% on their fees, or defer their student contribution (through HECS-HELP) and repay it later through the taxation system.

In the case of permanent residents (unless they are on a humanitarian visa) (and the UK cohort would generally not be on such a visa) cannot defer their fees to tax or receive the discount. Having said that as soon students become Australian citizens, they simply take their “naturalisation papers” to the relevant University (Student Services section) and then the University will change their citizenship status in the student management system, and they can start deferring their fees to tax or receive the discount.

All of that is explained in detail in a publication that is annually produced and called HECS-HELP booklet

In fact I recommend this DEWR website to anyone interested in studying, because it explains it all, from courses offered by all University, their fees, how Student Learning Entitlement works etc etc.
Each HE provider is required to publish the fees for the first year of the course – and they do so by sending the information to DEWR, and they publish it to the above site. Note the site includes presently 2009 fees.

All Universities charge fees at the unit level (and they can differ within a course, it all depends on the discipline the student studies, eg Law, Business, Economics, Medicine et al are the highest fees), Science the lowest, Nursing and Education and Humanities in between and so on.
Every University is required to publish a fee for each individual unit by the 1 October for the following year.
Out 2009 Fees are on this site: and it includes a table of units and fee v5.pdf

Once a student has decided what to study, they should look at the course first, say, an Associate Degree in Legal Studies
the course lists all the units a student needs to complete, when you click on a unit it shows you individual fees.

Just to add DFA are asking the Department of Education to allow ADF spouses and children to qualify for HECsHELP.

Family Information Network for Defence

You or your family members can also discuss any aspect of ADF pay, entitlements, allowances or conditions of service with the Family Information Network for Defence (FIND). You are encouraged to contact them on 1800 020 031. This is a toll-free, confidential service. It is available to Service members and their families anywhere in Australia, from 9.00am to 4.00pm Canberra time, Monday to Friday. Messages can be left on their answering service out of hours or sent via email to Emails will be answered promptly on the next working day.

Last updated: 26 May 2006

You will need the ADF Members PMKEYS number.