Hi Alison, thank you for sending your question in.
When a member loses their set in a federal election they are no longer a member of the House of Representatives. A senator who loses their seat in a regular election will continue in their role until the next 30 June.
Upon losing their seat, departing members move out of their office at Parliament House and return to everyday life. Some departing members chose to return to jobs they held before being elected to Parliament while others embark on new careers. Examples of new career paths undertaken by former members and senators include becoming a chancellor or vice-chancellor of a university, becoming the chairperson of a non-profit organisation, or embarking on a career in private enterprise.
It is important to note that if a member of parliament loses their seat they do not automatically cease to belong to a political party. They may wish to stay active in their party and contest a seat in a future election.