Income from outside Australia

Income you get from overseas can count in your income test.

What counts as overseas income

Overseas income that may count in the income test includes money from all of the following:

  • investment
  • pensions
  • employment
  • self employment
  • real estate.

We use the gross amount in the income test. This is the amount before tax or deductions. You can’t deduct any bank charges, tax or exchange rate conversion fees.

It doesn’t matter if the payments came from overseas or through an Australian agent.


We change all overseas income to Australian dollars for the income test. The exchange rate changes on the first work day of each month.

We treat overseas income differently for family assistance payments. Read about foreign income and family assistance.

Overseas pensions

We treat most overseas pensions as income.


Those we don’t count in your income test include:

If your partner dies

For 14 weeks after their death, your income test won't include:

  • any survivor's or widow's pension you get
  • any increase in your own payment.

Overseas investment income

Investments count in your income test. This includes savings, managed investments and shares. We use deeming rules to work out the income from financial investments.

Business or real estate income from overseas

We count this in your income test.

You can deduct some expenses from it. These costs are things you had to pay for to earn the income. For example, with rental income you can deduct costs that relate to the property.

Read about:

Page last updated: 31 August 2020