Working in Australia

TAX FILE NUMBER (TFN)

Before commencing work in Australia, you will need to obtain a Tax File Number (TFN). You can do this online through the Australian Taxation Office (ATO) website.
If you have any tax taken from your earnings, you will need to lodge a tax return at the end of the financial year using your TFN. The ATO do not use the same rules as the Department of Home Affairs. To find out your residency status for tax purposes, click here.

WORK AND YOUR VISA

If you are on a student visa, you can work up to 40 hours per fortnight (14 days) in Semesters 1 and 2. During semester breaks and holidays, there are no restrictions to your working hours. For Summer semester, although it is optional, if you are enrolled in Units, you will only be able to work up to 40 hours per fortnight.

YOUR RIGHTS AT WORK

There is a set of basic working rights, including minimum pay and conditions that protects everyone who works in Australia, including international students.
To find out more about your rights at work, view commonly asked questions and download the fact sheet from the Fair Work Ombudsman website.

WORKING AFTER YOU HAVE FINISHED YOUR DEGREE

When you have completed your studies, you may want to explore and apply for graduate positions offered by a variety of organisations. If you are an international student, there is a Temporary Graduate Visa (subclass 485) which allows graduates to stay and work in Australian temporary on completion of their studies. For further information, visit the Department of Home Affair’s Post Study work arrangements website.
Useful Links provided by Fair Work Ombudsman (FWO):

  1. Jessica’s story (based on a real FWO investigation) – this story includes details of an international student’s experience at work and receiving help from the FWO.
  2. Top tools and resources most relevant to international students.