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Residency status and tax relief

Check this document to help you determine whether or not you are a resident of Australia.

Last updated 25 August 2020

Under some tax treaties, if a person or entity is considered an Australian resident for income tax purposes they may be entitled to a reduction in, or exemption from, withholding tax on certain classes of their foreign source income. If this applies to you, you should contact the tax authorities in the country where the income is derived to ask how to apply for the reduction or exemption and what documents you will need to provide with your application.

Similarly, authorities from other countries may require you to provide evidence that you are covered by a bilateral superannuation agreement and thus exempt from making superannuation (or equivalent) contributions under the legislation of the other country. This evidence will be in the form of a certificate of coverage and is taken as proof by other countries that the employer or employee is subject to Australia's superannuation guarantee legislation and will remain so while the employee is on secondment in the other country.

Residency tests and tools

There are four main tests for residency:


Which test to use

More information


Primary test - if you reside in Australia according to the ordinary meaning of the word, you don't need to apply any of the other three tests.

Residency - the resides test


Statutory tests - if you don't satisfy the 'resides test' (the primary test), you may still be considered an Australian resident if you satisfy one of the three statutory tests.

Residency - the domicile test

Residency - the 183 day test

Residency - the superannuation test

183 day rule


To help you work out your residency status, use the Are you a resident? tool.

Different tests may apply to:

How to get in contact

Phone us on 13 28 61 for personal tax enquiries.

Translation and Interpretation Service

If you do not speak English well and want to talk to a tax officer, phone the Translating and Interpreting Service on 13 14 50 for help with your call.

If you have a hearing or speech impairment and have access to appropriate TTY or modem equipment, phone 13 36 77. If you do not have access to TTY or modem equipment, phone the Speech to Speech Relay Service on 1300 555 727.

Calling from overseas

If you are calling from overseas and are experiencing difficulties getting through on these numbers you can contact the Australian Taxation Office (ATO) by phoning Directory Assistance on +61 13 2869 or +61 2 6216 1111 between the hours of 8.00am to 5.00pm (Australian Eastern Standard Time or daylight-saving time) and request for your call to be transferred to the appropriate area within the ATO, alternatively you can fax us on +61 2 6225 0970.