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  • Employment income

    Declare income from your employer (job), including wages, cash, allowances and fringe benefits or super contributions.

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    Salary and wages

    The most common type of employment income is salary and wages whether you have one job or more, are full-time, part-time or casual. This may be cash-in-hand, payments directly into your bank account or in another way.

    Salary and wage payments you need to declare in your tax return, include:

    Allowances and other employment income

    You may receive allowances or other payments in connection with your employment that you need to declare in your tax return. These payments may include:

    • pandemic allowances your employer pays because of COVID-19
    • amounts your employer pays and reports separately on your income statement, such as allowances for      
      • car, travel, clothing and laundry
      • working conditions – for example, danger, height, dirt or hard lying
      • qualifications or special duties – for example, first aid certificate or safety officer
    • cash tips, gratuities and payments for your services
    • consultation fees and payments for voluntary services
    • jury attendance fees.

    Your employer may also pay you an allowance that you don't need to include as income in your tax return. These are travel allowances or overtime meal allowances that you receive under an industrial law, award or agreement. You can see these allowances on your payslips.

    If the allowance is not on your income statement or payment summary, and you:

    • spent the whole amount on deductible expenses, you  
      • don't include it as income in your tax return
      • can't claim any deductions for these expenses
    • spent more than your allowance, you  
      • include the allowance as income in your tax return
      • can claim a deduction for your expense, if you're eligible.

    Lump sum payments

    A lump sum payment is a one-time payment that is taxed and reported differently to your salary and wage income. You include lump sum payments as assessable income in your tax return in the income year you receive the payment.

    You may receive a lump sum payment:

    • when you leave a job, such as    
    • for unused annual leave, long service leave or special leave you may have been entitled to when you leave a job
    • in arrears (known as back pay or lump sum payments in arrears) for money your employer owes you from an earlier income year.

    If you receive a lump sum payment in arrears, you don't need to amend prior year tax returns. Tax offsets are in place for lump sum payments in arrears which prevents you paying too much tax in the year you receive the payment.

    Reportable fringe benefits and super contributions

    You need to declare other employment-related amounts you receive for:

    You don't have to pay tax on these amounts. We use these amounts to work out whether you are eligible to receive a range of government benefits and tax offsets.

    Last modified: 26 May 2022QC 31914