Veterans’ Vocational Rehabilitation Scheme (VVRS)

What is the Veterans’ Vocational Rehabilitation Scheme (VVRS)

A voluntary program that can help you find or stay in suitable paid work. 

Who can take part

You may be eligible to take part in the scheme if you served in the ADF, and your service was one of the following types: 

  • operational service - service performed outside Australia, during warlike operations in which the ADF was involved, and in areas with a higher level of risk than normal peacetime conditions
  • peacekeeping service - service outside Australia with a Peacekeeping Force
  • hazardous service - service on an overseas deployment that the Minister for Veterans’ Affairs has deemed high risk, even though it was not during wartime, conflicts or peacekeeping operations
  • Defence service - peacetime service in the ADF, usually between 7 December 1972 and 6 April 1994. In most cases you need to have completed 3 years continuous full-time service, unless you were medically discharged
  • British Nuclear Test Defence service - you participated in the nuclear tests at Maralinga, Emu Field and Montebello Islands between 1952 and 1965, or patrolled Maralinga after the test period as a police or protective services officer

You may also be eligible if you get the Service Pension due to invalidity if you are a:

Commonwealth veteran 

You may have qualifying service as a Commonwealth veteran if you served: 

  • in the defence force of a Commonwealth country
  • during a period of hostilities
  • in war or warlike operations in which the ADF was involved

You also need to have been: 

  • in danger from hostile enemy forces while serving outside your country; or 
  • awarded a campaign medal for service within your country

Allied veteran 

You may have qualifying service as an Allied veteran if you served: 

  • in the defence force of an Allied country 
  • during a period of hostilities 
  • in war or warlike operations in which the ADF was involved 
  • while in danger from hostile enemy forces

Allied mariner

You may have qualifying service as an Allied mariner if you: 

  • served during World War 2 
  • were detained by the enemy; or 
  • were in danger from hostile enemy forces; and 
  • served in an area where you would have been entitled to a campaign medal if you were a member of the defence force

If you receive a Special Rate or Intermediate Rate pension, you will keep the TPI or Intermediate Rate status.

You do not need to be getting payments or treatment from us to be eligible.

If you are involved in any other vocational rehabilitation program, you cannot take part in the VVRS as well.

What you can receive

You can access a range of services:

  • vocational assessments to help you find suitable work
  • advice or support if you are having problems at work
  • career advice and help with your résumé
  • training
  • advice on getting your skills recognised
  • assistance to change your work environment to better support your health
  • support to get counselling
  • support to help you manage your medical conditions

How you access

You can apply by filling out the VVRS application form and returning the form to us

If eligible, your application will be referred to a rehabilitation provider for further action. 

Things you should know

  • We may be able to pay some expenses to help you meet your goals during the program. For example, we may pay for retraining if it will help you obtain suitable work.
  • We do not pay for business loans, tools of trade or equipment to establish a business through the VVRS.

Legislation

Australian Participants in British Nuclear Tests and British Commonwealth Occupation Force (Treatment) Act 2006

Veterans' Entitlements Act 1986