Definition of Leave for the IMP


This topic provides information about the following:

  • definition of leave payment,
  • definition of personal leave,
  • exclusions when calculating the IMP,
  • the treatment of other payments received upon termination of employment, and
  • long service leave portability funds.

Definition of leave payment

Leave payments for the purposes of the IMP include payments in respect of:

  • annual leave,
  • carers leave,
  • leave loading,
  • long service leave,
  • certain maternity/paternity leave (see note below),
  • rostered days off,
  • sick leave,
  • personal leave, and
  • can also include other payments received on termination of employment.

Note: A payment for an instalment of parental leave paid under the Paid Parental Leave Act 2010 is NOT a leave payment for the purposes of the IMP.

Act reference: SSAct section 8(1) Income test definitions, section 8(1A) A reference in this Act to employment income, in relation to a person,…, section 8(1B) For the avoidance of doubt, if…, section 8(1C) For the purposes of subsection (1A) a leave payment…, section 1073A Employment income attribution over a period for social security pensioners, section 1073B Daily attribution of employment income, section 1073C Fortnightly or yearly expression of attributed employment income

Policy reference: SS Guide Description: employment termination payments (ETPs) & roll-overs for the IMP

Definition of personal leave

Personal leave may be granted for:

  • personal illness,
  • care of family or household members for whom the employee (1.1.E.87) has caring responsibility,
  • personal requirements associated with birth, adoption or fostering,
  • death of a family member or close friend, and
  • other emergency or other special purposes.

Explanation: In some organisations such as the public service, personal leave has replaced:

  • personal/carer's leave,
  • special leave, and
  • supplementary special leave.

Exclusions when calculating the IMP - transitional employment termination payments

Any termination payment, such as a leave payment or redundancy payment, that is rolled over under the transitional employment termination payment arrangements by the person's employer on behalf of the person into a superannuation fund is excluded from the IMP calculations. It is important to note that only payments that have been received as part of an employment termination payment under transitional arrangements can be rolled over. To receive this exclusion from the IMP the person must produce documentary evidence that the roll-over has taken place (such as an Employment Separation Certificate). Personal contributions to a superannuation fund made by the person are not roll-over amounts.

Policy reference: SS Guide Description: employment termination payments (ETPs) & roll-overs for the IMP

When are other payments received upon termination of employment considered to be leave payments for inclusion in IMP calculations?

Other types of payments received on termination of employment can be considered a leave payment, if the delegate is satisfied that the payment to the person could have been received:

  • for a period while absent from duty, and
  • in the course of the employment.

If the employment had continued, the payment would either:

  • have accumulated during the period of employment, or
  • been a condition of service.


  • Annual leave or long service leave are examples of leave accumulated during the period of employment.
  • Maternity leave is an example of a condition of service.

If a person accrues leave from employment overseas, the IMP is still applied.

Policy reference: SS Guide Description: employment termination payments (ETPs) & roll-overs for the IMP

Long service leave portability funds

The following table shows how funds in long service leave portability funds are treated.

If a person… Then the IMP …
chooses NOT to take their leave money out their long service leave portability fund, is imposed.
cannot access their money in a fund for a period, if at all, CANNOT be imposed until, if ever, they can legally access that money.

Explanation: Some industries, in particular, the mining and building/construction industry have introduced long service leave portability funds in which a person's long service leave entitlements and superannuation funds can accrue when they move between companies whose work continuity is volatile.

Last reviewed: 6 February 2017