The Guides to Social Policy Law is a collection of publications designed to assist decision makers administering social policy law. The information contained in this publication is intended only as a guide to relevant legislation/policy. The information is accurate as at the date listed at the bottom of the page, but may be subject to change. To discuss individual circumstances please contact Services Australia.

1.1.O.30 Ordinary income


This definition applies to all payments under the SSAct.


Ordinary income means income that is not maintenance income or an exempt lump sum. The definition of this term is in SSAct section 8(1).

Note: The definition of ordinary income is NOT the same as the ATO definition of income for tax purposes. The definition of ordinary income is far wider than the definition of taxable income. Ordinary income is NOT used for the YA parental means test.

Examples: Income from:

  • employment
  • DVA payments
  • overseas pensions
  • real estate and businesses including farms
  • non-financial investments
  • certain remunerative lump sums
  • deemed income
  • superannuation
  • boarders and lodgers, and
  • income streams (1.1.I.70).

Act reference: SSAct section 8(1)-'ordinary income'

Policy reference: SS Guide 4.3 Ordinary income

Last reviewed: