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Members of Defence Forces Established by Commonwealth or Allied Countries

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Commonwealth Veterans

A Commonwealth veteran is a veteran who had .continuous full-time service as a member of a defence force [glossary:of a:] Commonwealth country during a period of hostilities.

A "defence force established by a Commonwealth country" means:

  • the naval, military or air forces of the country; or
  • the nursing and auxiliary services of the naval, military or air forces of the country; or
  • the women's branch of the naval, military or air forces of the country;

Included in this are:

  • Polish nationals who served in the Royal Air Force (Foreign Reserve) from 28 February 1940 to 5 August 1940 (inclusive)
  • seamen who signed T124X, T124T or CSP1X agreements who are regarded as members of the Royal Navy
Allied Veterans

An allied veteran is a person who was appointed or enlisted as a member of a defence force established by an allied country and who rendered continuous full time service during a period of hostilities. This definition does not include a person who has served at any time in the forces of a country that was at war with Australia.

  • A "defence force established by an allied country" means:
  • the regular naval, military or air forces; and
  • the nursing or auxiliary services of the regular naval, military or air forces; and
  • the women's branch of the regular naval, military or air forces;

raised by an allied country and operated by the country with regular military-like lines of command, that is to say, raised and operated in such a manner that the members of those forces and services:

  • were formally appointed to, or enlisted in, those forces or services; and
  • were required to wear uniforms or insignia distinguishing them as members of those forces or services; and
  • were required to carry arms openly; and
  • were subject to the rules and conventions of warfare;

Continuous full-time service in relation to a member of the Defence Force means that a person must have served on a continuous full-time basis, as opposed to a part-time basis.

A period of continuous full-time service is required by a member of the Defence Force if they are to be considered as having eligible war service, operational service or defence service and access to the benefits associated with those forms of service.

The Australian Defence Force includes:

  • Australian Army
  • Royal Australian Navy (RAN)
  • Royal Australian Air Force (RAAF)

A Commonwealth country is a country, other than Australia that is, or was at the relevant time, a part of the Dominions of the Crown.

A period of hostilities is defined in section 5B(1) of the VEA to mean:

  • World War 1 from its commencement on 4 August 1914 to 11 November 1918 (both included); or
  • World War 2 from its commencement on 3 September 1939 to 29 October 1945 (both included); or
  • the period of hostilities in respect of Korea from 27 June 1950 to 19 April 1956 (both included); or
  • the period of hostilities in respect of Malaya from 29 June 1950 to 31 August 1957 (both included); or
  • the period of hostilities in respect of war-like operations in operational areas from 31 July 1962 to 11 January 1973 (both included).