DO YOU KNOW YOUR SUPER ENTITLEMENTS?
With the media reporting that the government might raise the retirement age and with some employers not paying the right super for their employees, it’s time that we all checked our super entitlements!
Have you lost some of your super?
It’s amazing how many people have super in accounts that they have forgotten about and even more amazing that this lost super totals around $12 billion! If some of that money is yours, it’s time to claim it and add it to your current fund. Check the ATO website and track down your lost super today!
Is your employer contributing the correct super into your fund?
Employees who don’t need to be paid super are few and far between, so it’s a fair bet that your employer should be paying super into your nominated fund. The problem is knowing how much super your employer should be paying!
Currently, your employer needs to pay 9.5% of your salary as super into your fund and they must make these payments at least every three months. It’s not enough to see your super on your pay slips, you must check your fund account to ensure that these contributions have actually been paid into your account.
If your employer is late paying these contributions into your fund, it will clearly affect your investments, so you need to check your fund account and make sure that these payments are being made regularly. It’s even more important that these contributions are made regularly, because by 2025, they will increase from 9.5% to 12%, helping to grow your retirement fund even faster.
What if your employer is not paying your super correctly?
If you believe that your employer should be paying your super contributions and they actually show on your pay slip, but not in your super account or they don’t even show on your pay slip, then you can contact the ATO and the Fair Work Ombudsman.
Since the ATO has a 12-month amnesty for employers to catch up with unpaid super contributions (starting on 24 May 2018), they are more likely to rectify the situation if you bring it to their attention; otherwise without this amnesty they will be heavily fined.
Employers not contributing the correct amount of super for their employees is an on-going concern for the government, which is why they have brought in this 12-month amnesty. It is expected that when this amnesty period ends next year however, that even larger penalties will be introduced for employer non-compliance. In addition, super funds will be required to report all super contributions to the ATO who will then be aware if the contributions are incorrect, late or not being paid at all. This takes the onus off employees themselves to follow up with their super, which is great!
However, you don’t want to become too complacent believing that the ATO will sort out any compliance issues. You should regularly check to make sure that your contributions are being paid into your account and also whether your fund is living up to your expectations. It is complacency that can turn a poorly performing super fund into a disastrous retirement, so always keep on top of your fund and if necessary, move to one that performs better over the long term.