There has been recent change in superannuation legislation that will affect thousands of Australians and many will not know the impact of this change.
The Federal Government has recently passed law that allows the Australian Tax Office to receive more lost and unclaimed super accounts. If effect, the changes are as follows:
- If you have a super account of less than $2,000 and your super fund is unable to contact you for more than 12 months, this money will be transferred to the Australian Tax Office.
Currently the threshold is $200 and 5 years of inactivity however this will change as noted above on 31 May 2013. Thousands of Australians don’t know how many super accounts they have and it is not uncommon for people to have 5-7 super accounts. Every time you start a new job, a new super account is potentially setup for you, each charging you separate fees.
Millions of dollars is lost each year in fees where people have multiple super accounts and lost super accounts.
So what should you do?
- Go to the ATO’s super seeker website and see if you have any lost super that you can claim.
- Consider rolling over your super accounts into one consolidated super account to avoid paying multiple super account fees.
- When you start with a new employer, advise them that if possible, you would like them to contribute into your own super account. Under choice of super, most Australians can nominate the super fund they wish for their employer to contribute into.
- Compare super funds and choose the one that is best for you. Considerations may include fees, online access, insurance coverage, number of investment options, ability to buy shares, ability to buy term deposits, ability to buy other assets such as gold and bonds.
- Seek financial advice if you would like to rollover your super accounts but don’t have the time or expertise to do it yourself
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