Factsheet: Working in Australia
ONLINE TEXT VERSION - March 2012
When you work in Australia and you are employed, you get paid
and you have to pay tax on the money you earn.
Getting paid for work
When you get paid you get a pay slip. Your pay slip shows you
how much you were paid, how much tax you paid and how much
superannuation money was put into your superannuation fund.
When you work in Australia you pay tax to the Australian
Government so the government has money to provide services the
community needs, like hospitals, schools, roads and public
transport (buses and trains).
Tax file number
Everyone in Australia has their own tax file number. You need a
tax file number to work in Australia. When you start a job, you
have to provide your tax file number to your employer.
This is money being saved for when you are old and do not work
anymore. It is put into a superannuation fund by your employer.
- When you work in Australia and you are employed, you get
- When you work in Australia, you pay tax (money) to the
- Superannuation is money being saved for when you are old and do
not work anymore.
- Your employer usually has to pay an extra 9.5% of the money you
earn into a superannuation fund for you. This is money in addition
to your pay.
Michael starts his new job
Michael has been unemployed for the last 3 months and has been
receiving a Centrelink payment to help him buy the things he
He saw an advertisement for a salesperson at a local clothing
store. He applied, went for an interview and got the job.
Michael then got a letter from his new employer with details
about his new job.
Michael read the letter. It said that his employer's name is
Jack Smith and the company is called Clothes for Us. The letter
also said that the job is called 'clothing salesperson', that
Michael will get paid $16 an hour and will be working part-time for
25 hours each week.
After working for 2 weeks, Michael received his first pay. He
was also given his pay slip. He could see how much he had been
paid, how much tax he paid and the amount of superannuation his
employer paid into Michael's superannuation fund.
On his pay slip, Michael saw that he earned $800 for working for
2 weeks and that he paid $85 in tax. He also saw his employer paid
$72 into a special fund for his superannuation.
The next week, Michael received his payment from Centrelink.
Michael knew it was important to tell Centrelink about his new
job so they can change the amount they pay him. Not telling
Centrelink means Michael could be paid too much money by Centrelink
and would then have a debt. He would have to pay them back or get
Michael phoned Centrelink to tell them about his new job and he
sent them a copy of the letter from his employer.
Where to get more help and more information
For more information on superannuation, visit
MoneySmart or call 1300 300 630. If you are having problems with
your employer or want to know more about your rights as a worker,
contact Fair Work Commission's
Last updated: 02 Aug 2016