Welfare debt dodgers face international travel bans, as part of a new push to recover hundreds of millions of dollars owed to taxpayers.
Since June this year, the Department of Human Services has issued more than 20 Departure Prohibition Orders (DPOs), to prevent former welfare recipients with outstanding debts from leaving the country.
The DHS now plans to escalate their use to recover more than $800 million, owed by more than 150,000 people.
Minister for Human Services and Digital Transformation, Michael Keenan, says the Government believes that if they can afford to go on an overseas holiday, they can afford to start repaying what they owe.
Many have known about these debts for years, in some cases for up to a decade, while others accrued their debts as a result of deliberate acts of fraud, up to $60,000 in one case.
Repayments will depend on personal circumstances, and people in genuine hardship can have their repayments deferred.
Those who are currently receiving a welfare benefit, or are already making repayments, are not being targeted by this new measure.
People who are concerned that their debt may affect overseas travel plans should enter into a payment arrangement using the Money You Owe online service within myGov. This will safeguard them from any interruption to their travel.