Help for you and your family

Last updated: 
15 January 2020

We can help veterans and their families in many different ways. We do not have separate programs for Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander veterans. We help people based on their service.

Who is an Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander veteran?

An Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander veteran is a person who:

  • served in the Australian Defence Force either full-time or as a reservist
  • identifies as an Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander
  • is accepted in their community as an Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander

You do not need to identify as being Aboriginal or Torres Strait Islander to make a claim. This is because we base any help you receive on your military service. 

Tell us if you are Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander veteran

You can contact us to let us know you want your records to show that you identify as being Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander. This helps us:

  • provide better services to as many veterans and their families as possible
  • make sure you and your family know what support is available

How we help

As an Australian Government agency, we provide support to:

  • veterans and their dependants
  • widowed partners
  • Indigenous people who were in and around Maralinga, Emu Fields and the Montebello Islands in the 1950s and 1960s at the time of the British Nuclear Tests in Australia
  • certain members of Territory, State and Federal Police forces who were members of peacekeeping forces outside of Australia

We want to make sure that anyone who has served their country can access entitlements from us.

You may be able to receive:

The Office of Australian War Graves take care of memorials and war graves for veterans. They can also help you locate specific war graves and cemeteries.

We may also be able to provide resources for students, teachers and historians.

If you need help with your claim

You can get help with your claim or if you need to speak to someone about what we do.

If you need help you can contact:

Contact a liaison officer

If you would like to speak to someone who can help, contact an Indigenous Veterans' Liaison Officer.

The officer's job is to help Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander veterans get the right support. They can answer questions you have about us and what we can do to help you.

To find the best person to talk to you can contact us. Tell us you want to speak to an Indigenous Veterans' Liaison Officer.

What to tell us

Some changes in your life can affect your benefits.

You may need to tell us if you:

  • change your living arrangements
  • change your bank details
  • become partnered or separate from your partner
  • plan to go overseas
  • move to a residential age care facility
  • go to hospital for an extended period of time

These changes can affect the amount we pay you. If you do not tell us about a change, we could pay you money that you are not entitled to.

If we pay you money you are not entitled to, you will have to back it back.

In the event of your passing

Your family or the executor of your estate need to tell us as soon as they can. It will affect any benefits you receive from us. There is a bereavement period during which your dependants may continue to receive payments.

Your partner or family may be able to get benefits such as: