NACCHO Aboriginal Health News: Important changes to income reporting – Centrelink

Simplifying Income Reporting

Are you, or your partner, working and also getting a payment from Centrelink?

From 7 December 2020, the way you report employment income is changing.

This change will affect you if you, or your partner, get employment income and any of the following payments:

What are the changes?

Currently, you need to report your employment income based on the number of hours you worked in your reporting period, even if you haven’t been paid yet.

From 7 December 2020, you will need to report the gross employment income your employer paid you in your reporting period. 

Gross pay is not the amount of money received in your bank account, it is the amount your employer paid you before tax and any other deductions. You can find this on your payslip.

If you have a partner, don’t forget to report the gross employment income they were paid as well.

If your reporting date falls between 7 and 18 December 2020, you may need to make a one-off calculation if;

  • you reported earned employment income for a period before 7 December 2020, and
  • your employer paid you the income after 7 December 2020.

If you report using your Centrelink online account or Express Plus Centrelink mobile app, you’ll be asked some extra questions during this period to help you with this one-off report.

Centrelink will have an online calculator available to help you work this out. You can find the calculator here from 7 December 2020.

If you get back pay from your employer, how this affects your payments will change from 7 December 2020. Instead of applying it in the past, Centrelink will assess it in your future payments for the same amount of time the back pay was for. You will be able to report these types of payments online.

Centrelink will also make reporting your employer details easier. For some customers, when you sign into your online account, your employer’s details may be pre-filled for you to check. This will save you having to record your employer’s details.

Why is it changing?

The changes are designed to:

  • simplify the way you report to Centrelink
  • assess the employment income you were paid (rather than what you earned and have not been paid)
  • support people to report employment income correctly and reduce the likelihood of an overpayment
  • support people as they transition to work.

How can I report my income?

You can report the income you’ve been paid with your Centrelink online account through myGov. If you don’t have a myGov account, create an account and link it to Centrelink services.

If you can’t report your income online, you can:

How do I get more information?

Services Australia staff are available to assist as you transition to the new model of reporting employment income.

If you’re unsure how to report your employment income or would like more information, go to the Services Australia income reporting section on their website here.

Support is also available on the Services Australia website here.

Or you can ask at Services Australia on Facebook or tweet @ServicesAustraliaAU.