Changes to income reporting on the way

The Morrison Government is delivering on its commitment to simplify the welfare system after Parliament today passed legislation to make the income reporting process easier for payment recipients.

Minister for Families and Social Services Anne Ruston said this was good news for the 1.2 million welfare recipients who earn employment income each year.

“Starting 1 July 2020 welfare recipients will report the gross amount their employer has paid them, as it appears on their payslip, instead of estimating what they will have earned over the previous fortnight, often before they're actually paid,” Minister Ruston said.

“We know that in a single year welfare recipients made more than 15 million corrections to recently reported earnings after discovering when they were paid that they had incorrectly reported their employment income.

“By taking the guess work out of reporting the Government will have much more accurate information to process payments reducing the chances of under and over payment.”

This change aligns with the rolling introduction of Single Touch Payroll data over the 12 months to July 2021, which will make it even easier for people to report their income.

“Welfare recipients will progressively begin to have their employment and income details pre-filled, similar to what happens with online tax returns,” Minister Ruston said.

Current payment recipients should continue reporting their employment income in line with existing practices. Those affected by the change will be contacted by Services Australia and supported through the transition period.