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Five ‘super’ actions to take before the end of the financial year

With the end of the financial year not too far away, here are the five actions to take to get the most out of the superannuation system.

Important information: Any advice and information in this publication is of a general nature only. Any general tax information provided in this publication is intended as a guide only and is based on our general understanding of taxation laws. It is not intended to be a substitute for specialised taxation advice or an assessment of an individual’s liabilities, obligations or claim entitlements that arises, or could arise, under taxation law, and we recommend that you consult a registered tax agent. WealthHub Securities Ltd.  is not a registered tax agent. 

 

1. Concessional superannuation contributions

Can you make additional concessional contributions to super? 

Concessional contributions include your employer’s 10.0%, salary sacrifice contributions and any amount you claim as a personal tax deduction. (You no longer need to be self-employed to claim the tax deduction). Your concessional contributions cannot exceed $27,500 in aggregate. 

The normal age rules apply. Up to age 67, anyone can make a contribution. If you are between 67 and 74 years, you must pass the ‘work test’, which is defined as working 40 hours over any period of 30 consecutive days. If you are 75 or over, only mandated employer contributions (the compulsory 10.0%) can be made. 

 

2. Non-concessional superannuation contributions 

Can you make additional personal (after tax) contributions? 

The cap on non-concessional contributions is $110,000. Up to age 67, anyone can make a non-concessional contribution provided their total superannuation balance on 30 June 2021 was less than $1,700,000. If you are between 67 and 74 years, you must also pass the ‘work test’.

If you are under 67  (for at least one day in 21/22), you may be able access the ‘bring forward rule’, which allows up to 3 years’ worth of contributions in one year. Potentially, you could contribute $330,000 in one hit and a couple could get a combined $660,000 into super. 

Super balances are measured each June 30 (i.e. your balance on 30 June 21 determines whether you can make non-concessional contributions in 2021/22) and includes all amounts in accumulation and pension. If your total super balance was between $1,480,000 and $1,590,000 then the maximum amount you can access under the bring-forward rule is $220,000, and if your balance is between $1,590,000 and $1,700,000, you are limited to $110,000. Above $1,700,000, you can’t make non-concessional contributions.

 

3. Government Co-Contribution

Can you access, or can a family member, access the Government Co-Contribution? If eligible, the Government will contribute up to $500 if a personal super contribution of $1,000 is made.

The Government matches a personal contribution on a 50% basis. This means that for each dollar of personal contribution, the Government makes a co-contribution of $0.50, up to an overall maximum of $500.

To be eligible, there are 3 tests. The person’s total income must be under $41,112 (it starts to phase out from this level, cutting out completely at $56,112), they must be under 71 at the end of the year, and critically, at least 10% of this income must be earned from an employment source.

While you may not qualify for the co-contribution, this can be a great way to boost a spouse’s super or even an adult child. For example, if your kids or grandkids are university students and doing some part time work, you could potentially make a personal contribution of $1,000 on their behalf – and the Government will chip in $500!

 

4. Tax offset for spousal contributions

Can you claim a tax offset for super contributions on behalf of your spouse? If you have a spouse who earns less than $37,000 and you make a spouse super contribution of $3,000, you can claim a personal tax offset of 18% of the contribution, up to a maximum of $540.

The tax offset phases out when your spouse earns $40,000 or more. Your spouse’s income includes their assessable income, reportable fringe benefits and any (though unlikely) reportable employer super contributions. One additional eligibility test – your spouse’s total super balance on 30 June 2021 must be  less than $1,700,000. 

 

5. Pension payments

Finally, if you are taking an account-based pension, have you been paid enough? The Government requires that you take at least the minimum payment, otherwise your fund will potentially be taxed at 15% on its investment earnings, rather than the special rate of 0% that applies to assets that are supporting the payment of a super pension.

The minimum payment is based on your age, and calculated on the balance of your super assets at the start of the financial year (1 July). To assist retirees following the Covid-19 pandemic, the Government has reduced the minimum annual payment required by 50% for the 2019-20, 2020-21, 2021-22 financial years and next year (2022-2023). The factors to apply this year are shown below. 

 

Age

Minimum withdrawal (FY21/22)

 

Under 65

2.0%

65 – 74

2.5%

75 -79

3.0%

80  - 84

3.5%

85 – 89

4.5%

90 – 94

5.5%

95 and above

7.0%

Source: nabtrade

 

For example, if you were aged 66 on 1 July 2021 and had an account balance of $1,000,000, your minimum payment is 2.5% of $1,000,000 or $25,000. You can take your pension at any time or in any amount(s), but your aggregate drawdown over the year must exceed the minimum amount. If you commenced a pension mid-year, the minimum amount is pro-rated according to the number of days remaining until the end of the financial year. 

 

 

All prices and analysis at 31 May 2022. This information was produced by Switzer Financial Group Pty Ltd (ABN 24 112 294 649), which is an Australian Financial Services Licensee (Licence No. 286 531This material is intended to provide general advice only. It has been prepared without having regard to or taking into account any particular investor’s objectives, financial situation and/or needs. All investors should therefore consider the appropriateness of the advice, in light of their own objectives, financial situation and/or needs, before acting on the advice. This article does not reflect the views of WealthHub Securities Limited.


About the Author
Paul Rickard , Switzer Group

Paul Rickard is a co-founder of the Switzer Report. Paul has more than 30 years’ experience in financial services and banking, including 20 years with the Commonwealth Bank Group in senior leadership roles. Paul was the founding Managing Director and CEO of CommSec, and was named Australian ‘Stockbroker of the Year’ in 2005. In 2011, Paul teamed up with Peter Switzer and Maureen Jordan to launch the Switzer Report, a newsletter and website for share market investors. A regular commentator in the media, investment advisor and company director, he is also a Non-Executive Director of Tyro Payments Ltd and PEXA Group Limited.