Wearing Foreign Awards

The Order of Wearing Australian Honours and Awards issued by Government House directs that foreign awards are worn immediately after all Australian honours or awards, in the order of date of approval to wear. The only exceptions to this are:

  • When all foreign awards are approved on the same date (this will predominantly only apply to those ADF personnel who have received awards as a result of prior service with a foreign defence force). In this circumstance, the awards may be worn in the order of precedence of the awarding country but must only be worn immediately after all Australian honours and awards the member may be in receipt of, or subsequently receive.
  • Imperial honours and awards issued under the Australian system until 5 October 1992 are considered Australian and their status will be upheld. As such, they are to be worn according to The Order of Wearing Australian Honours and Awards and carry any appropriate post-nominals.
  • In cases where more than one foreign award from the same nation has been given to an ADF member, they may be grouped according to the order of wearing of that nation. For example, an ADF member is given approval to wear the US Meritorious Service Medal and later the Legion of Merit Degree Commander. As a courtesy to the awarding nation, these may be worn in accordance with that nation's order of wearing.

A number of medal ribbon posters have been produced by various commercial entities. These have been produced as a visual reference guide for medal ribbons and should not be used as an authority on the order of wearing foreign awards.

Post-nominals are not used for foreign awards

The Governor-General of the Commonwealth of Australia, on the advice of the Prime Minister, determines whether Australian citizens can accept and wear foreign awards. For more information, and a schedule of approved countries, please see Accepting and wearing of foreign awards by Australians on The Governor-General of the Commonwealth of Australia website

See also: