Super Guide for your 50s

Superannuation is designed to finance your retirement so the Government has special rules about when you can access your super benefits, and the tax that applies to super benefits. Generally speaking, you cannot access super benefits before the age of 55. If you fall into one of the exceptions that enable you to access super benefits under the age of 55, then you can expect to pay a higher rate tax on those super benefits than if you waited until your turned 55, or waited until you turned 60.

If you are aged 50 or over, you are subject to a special contributions caps when making concessional (before-tax) contributions. Anyone in the 50-plus age group needs to be aware that as you get older, aged-based super rules come into effect. For example, you must satisfy a work test if you intend to make contributions after the age of 65, and you can't make any super contributions once you turn 75.

Turning 55 can be significant in the super world because it is the minimum age for accessing super benefits (assuming you have retired and born before a certain date). If you are 55-plus, you can also access your super when you haven't retired if you choose to start a transition-to-retirement-pension (TRIP). Although super benefits are not generally tax-free between the ages of 55 and 60, you can still take advantage of a tax-free threshold when taking a superannuation lump sum, and a 15% tax offset when taking a superannuation income stream (pension).

Set out below are all SuperGuide articles explaining Super Guide for your 50s.

Super contributions: Over-50s concessional cap (10 Q&As)

In this article, you can find the answers to 10 popular questions received by readers on the concessional (before-tax) contributions cap for over-50s.For a comprehensive guide on concessional contributions, see SuperGuide article Super concessional (before-tax) contributions: 2015/2016 survival … [Read more...]

Super contributions caps for the 2015/2016 year

The superannuation contributions caps for concessional (before tax) and non-concessional (after tax) contributions will not increase for the 2015/2016 year. The contributions caps applicable for the 2015/2016 year, will be the same limits in place for the 2014/2015 year. Concessional … [Read more...]

Repay debts with super: then claim Age Pension

Q: I have read about the changes to the Age Pension assets test taking effect from January 2017. My question is, can I pay my superannuation into my mortgage, live off my private savings and then receive the Age Pension when I turn 65? My age pension age is 65, because I was born in June 1952.A: … [Read more...]

Women and super: A worry-free financial future is possible

Before I wrote Super Freedom: A woman’s guide to superannuation, I had often discussed the need for a practical non-technical book for women on superannuation. The first question I was asked when I told some female friends that I was writing a book for women on superannuation and retirement was: … [Read more...]

Financial freedom: Retirement planning in six steps

How much money do you need in retirement to live a lifestyle free of everyday money worries? For many Australians, this means a lifestyle where you can pay your bills without financial stress, you can enjoy an occasional holiday (or many!), you can maintain your car and house, and you can buy gifts … [Read more...]

What are the super and retirement rules for over-65s?

Q: My wife (age 63) and myself (age 65) were told by a financial organisation that at 65 or over I could put money into super, pay 15% tax on the way in, and then draw it out when I wished and pay no tax. In fact I have been told to pay myself $30,000 or less and source the rest of my income through … [Read more...]

Age Pension: Does my superannuation lump sum count for income test?

Q: I’m over 65 and a member of a super fund, from which I receive an account-based pension. I need to withdraw a lump sum of $40,000 from my super, as my super is not enough to live on. I will have to apply for a part pension (Age) from Centrelink. Will my lump sum be counted as income in the … [Read more...]