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.

Cashing in on the co-contribution rules (2016/2017 year)

Note: This article explains the co-contribution rules for the 2016/2017 year (and later in the article, also for the 2015/2016, 2014/2015, 2013/2014, 2012/2013 and 2011/2012 years).The federal government is giving away money to anyone who makes a non-concessional (after-tax) contribution to … [Read more...]

Super concessional (before-tax) contributions: 2016/2017 survival guide

Note: The concessional contributions caps for the 2016/2017 financial year are not affected by the 2016 Federal Budget announcement to reduce the size of the annual concessional cap from 1 July 2017. For information about the proposed, lower concessional cap of $25,000 for all age groups, effective … [Read more...]

Your 2016/2017 guide to non-concessional (after-tax) contributions

SUPER ALERT! On 3 May 2016, the federal government announced an IMMEDIATE cut to the non-concessional contributions cap, including a cessation of the bring-forward rule (explained later in the article). Although this change has immediate effect, from 3 May 2016 (7.30pm), it is still subject to … [Read more...]

Capital gains: Reducing tax via super contributions

Q: I have a self-managed super fund (SMSF) and I also have two investment properties in my personal name. When I sell the properties, I will be required to pay capital gains tax. Can this capital gains tax be offset by a contribution to the SMSF which would be tax-deductible? Would there be a 15% … [Read more...]

Know your super limits: Reducing CGT via concessional contributions

Q: I am one of those people (and my wife) who made the decision years ago to invest in property rather than super. Now at 60, (wife 57) I am retired and live off my property investments. I would like to get rid of the properties at about age 65. Mainly because of the worry, and maintenance upkeep, … [Read more...]

Who can make tax-deductible super contributions?

Note: From 1 July 2017, the Coalition, if it wins the 2016 Federal Election, intends to allow all individuals under the age of 75 to claim tax deductions for personal super contributions, subject to the concessional contributions cap, and taking account of previously-made super contributions for a … [Read more...]

Salary sacrificing and super: 10 facts you should know

Salary sacrificing superannuation, by making before-tax super contributions, is a popular strategy for employees on middle-to-high incomes. The deal is that you increase your superannuation balance (and pay 15% contributions tax, and for those earning an adjusted taxable income of more than … [Read more...]

Contributing to your spouse’s super account

Q: I’m fully employed while my wife has not been working for 18 months, and she is unlikely to return to work before the end of next financial year. My question concerns maximising tax strategies for this year. Can I contribute on her behalf in after-tax dollars funds into her super fund, and claim … [Read more...]