Declaring wages

To help calculate your premiums, you need to declare annual wages once a year. 

Every business with an icare Workers Compensation Insurance policy needs to declare the amount of wages paid within the year. You're required to lodge a declaration at the end of your workers compensation insurance policy period.

This helps us make sure you're paying the right premium and that everyone contributes equitably to the scheme.

Depending on how much you’ve paid in wages during the policy period, your premium for the current policy period may be adjusted. This means you may be required to make an additional payment or receive a refund.

Declare your actual or update your estimated wages

If you have recently received your renewal documents you can declare your actual wages (once that policy period has expired) or update your estimated wages (at any time during the policy period) using the link below. Here's what you'll need to get started: 

  • policy number
  • period of insurance
  • customer reference code (located under your policy number on your renewal letter)

Declare your wages now

Wages declaration guide

Watch our video to find out more about declaring wages, an important part of your policy renewal:

Wage declaration audits

From time to time, icare conducts audits on wage declarations for current and past policy periods, so it’s in your best interest to send your actual wages in on time.

Learn more about wage audits

Where a payment to a worker (including deemed workers) is made in lieu of wages (regardless of the terminology used to describe that payment), the payment is counted as wages.


Apprentice wages need to be declared separately to those of other workers, because they entitle you to a premium reduction.

Learn more about premium reductions for employers of apprentices


If you have contractors who are deemed workers, include the full contract value (ex GST) in your wages declaration. 

If you know the breakdown of labour, tools, plant and materials include the $value as required; if not, just place an ‘x’ in the appropriate column at Section A of the Declaration of Actual Wages Form and icare will use a default % value of the contract payment.

Asbestos wages

Where a worker has exposure to, or handles, asbestos or asbestos-containing products, employers are required to declare wages for the time (hours) the worker was exposed, including when using Personal Protective Equipment.

Employers should maintain a record of the hours of exposure for wages declaration and wage auditing purposes.

What can wages include?

The amounts paid between policy start date and policy expiry date for any of the below categories:

  • salary/wages
  • overtime, shift and other allowances
  • over award payments
  • bonuses, commissions
  • payments to working directors (including directors' fees)
  • payments to pieceworkers
  • payments for sick leave, public holidays and the associated leave loadings
  • value of any substitutes for wages
  • employer paid or payable superannuation contributions (including the superannuation guarantee levy)
  • grossed up value of fringe benefits (allowances subject to fringe benefits tax are counted at the grossed up value, that is the value of the benefit multiplied by the relevant Australian Tax Office fringe benefit formula).
  • long service leave payments (including lump sum payments instead of long service leave)
  • termination payments (lump sum payments in respect of annual leave, long service leave, sick leave and related leave loadings)
  • trust distributions to workers where the distribution is in lieu of wages for work done for the trust
  • JobKeeper payments (only for hours worked). Please see our COVID-19 information page for more details.

What not to include

The following types of payments do not need to be declared as wages:

  • payments to non-working directors
  • compensation payments under the Workers Compensation Act 1987
  • any GST component in a payment to a worker
  • JobKeeper payments where your worker is not working and not earning wages. Please see our COVID-19 information page for more details.

The Wages Definition Manual (PDF, 0.85 MB) provides a comprehensive guide of the wages that should be taken into account when declaring wages.

The extent to which motor vehicle and accommodation allowances are excluded from wages is published by the State Insurance Regulatory Authority in its Annexure D of the Workers Compensation Market Practice and Premiums Guidelines.

Non-wage based activities

If you're a taxi operator, you'll need to provide the following additional information:

  • a list of vehicles held at the beginning of the period of insurance (including plate number/s)
  • purchase/sale dates of any vehicles that have changed hands in both the previous and current 12 months
  • indicate if vehicles are metropolitan or country, and the average number of bailee shifts/week per plate.

Please provide this information and any other supporting information provided by the Taxi Council on a separate sheet and attach it to your Declaration of Actual Wages form.


Non-profit organisations, public benevolent institutions and charities should continue to declare worker benefits that aren't subject to fringe benefits tax at the net value.

Once the worker benefits exceed the Australian Tax Office fringe benefit threshold, the employer must declare the benefit at the grossed-up value.