Income maintenance period

The income maintenance period is when your’e not eligible to get the maximum rate of income support payment because you have received some other form of payment.

This could be payment for sick leave, annual leave, termination of employment or a redundancy payment from your former employer when that job ended.

An income maintenance period applies to the following payments:

You should submit your claim to have your income maintenance period calculated, even if you have not yet received your final payment from your former employer.

How it works

The amount of money you or your partner are paid when your employment ends will determine the length of your income maintenance period.

For example, a 10 week redundancy payment may result in a 10 week income maintenance period, starting from the date you receive your redundancy payment.

If some of your leave payment or redundancy payment was rolled directly into your superannuation under the Transitional Employer Termination Payment provisions, this amount will be deducted for the purpose of assessing your income maintenance period. The Transitional Employer Termination Payment provisions may apply to leave or redundancy payments made between 1 July 2007 and 30 June 2012.

Depending on the amount of your final payment from your former employer, you may be able to receive a partial income support payment from us during the income maintenance period. This will be assessed when you submit your claim.

If you spend your money

It is important to know, if you spend your final payment from your former employer on expenses that are not considered to be unavoidable or reasonable, you will still have to serve the income maintenance period.

These expenses may include:

  • lump sum payments on a mortgage or rent, or
  • holidays

If you have to spend your final payment from your former employer on expenses that are considered unavoidable or reasonable, your waiting period may be reduced or waived. These expenses may include:

  • essential repairs to a car or home, or
  • essential medical expenses


We may waive the income maintenance period if you can prove you’re experiencing severe financial hardship. This could be because you have used your final payment from your former employer to pay unavoidable or reasonable expenses.

Page last updated: 12 September 2016