SpB reviews - non-permanent resident & temporary absence overseas


This topic explains SpB reviews covering a non-resident parent with custody of an Australian citizen child and temporary absences overseas, including a partner (1.1.P.85) going overseas.

Act reference: SSAct section 5(1)-'parent'

Non-permanent resident - custody of Australian citizen child

A review should be set at grant to re-assess the parent's residence status.

Example: If the Department of Home Affairs indicates that a decision can be expected soon, the outcome is followed up.

If permanent residence:

  • has been granted with
    • a waiting period the parent may be eligible for SpB if they suffered a significant change in circumstance, beyond their control, after arriving in Australia (1.1.A.320), OR
    • NO waiting period, the parent can claim JSP OR PP, OR
  • has NOT been granted, verify whether the Department of Home Affairs intends to deport the parent, and, if so
    • what action the parent is taking (see example), AND
    • whether the child is remaining, and in whose custody (see explanation).
    • Example: Lodging of an appeal, which could require a further review.

    • Explanation: SpB should be cancelled if the child has another means of support or leaves Australia.

These cases should be reviewed every 3 months, re-examining the non-custodial parent's capacity to provide child support.

Policy reference: SS Guide SpB for Australian citizen children & Australian permanent resident children in the custody of a non-permanent resident

Payment of SpB during temporary absence overseas

SpB is ONLY paid outside Australia for a maximum of 6 weeks in special circumstances and the person MUST remain qualified throughout the absence.

Any other means of support while the person is overseas MUST be checked. Particular attention is given to the source of funds used to pay for overseas travel and any free board and lodgings (1.1.B.70) provided overseas. The full extent of any third party support, including further support if needed should be established.

A person is asked to provide details of their overseas accommodation. Free board and/or lodgings may reduce the rate of SpB.

Partner going overseas

When the partner of an SpB recipient goes overseas the recipient's rate of SpB is still limited to the partnered rate and, any income received by the partner still affects the rate payable to the SpB recipient.

Policy reference: SS Guide Application of portability rules (portability table)

Last reviewed: 20 March 2020