Superannuation Q and As

Trish Power (author of Superannuation for Dummies and DIY Super for Dummies) answers readers’ questions on super.

Set out below are all SuperGuide articles explaining Superannuation Q and As.

SMSF pension payments: A little bit under may be OK

SuperGuide often receives questions from readers asking what happens if they don’t withdraw the minimum pension amount required to be paid each year from their pension account, especially when the underpayment is due to an honest mistake, or due to circumstances beyond their control.Before … [Read more...]

Non-concessional contributions: Re-contribution strategy still applies

Q: My wife turns 60 this financial year and it has always been my intention to cash out her portion of our small self-managed super fund (SMSF) and re-contribute it straight back in, so as to ensure that when she and I pass away, our children are not hit by tax. Is that still a valid strategy and if … [Read more...]

Retirement and tax: What are the minimum pension payment rules?

Q: I am 63. I want to retire next year but I am not sure if I want to access my super benefits yet. I have heard that when I retire, I must withdraw some super benefits each year, otherwise I won’t receive tax-free super benefits. Can you please clarify the rules for me?A: Your question is … [Read more...]

Minimum pension payment: At what date do you determine the age for payment calculation?

Q: I am drawing on an account-based pension from my SMSF. I turn 65 in June 2017. Will I need to draw a minimum of 4% or 5% for the 2016/2017 year, and does the minimum pension factors change for the 2017/2018 year? Or, in other words, what is the determining age, the one at the start of the … [Read more...]

Age Pension: I have moved states. Do I get the same amount of pension regardless of where I live?

Q: I have read in a local newspaper that Age Pension rates have increased. I recently moved from New South Wales to Queensland. I am anxious to know if the Age Pension increases are for ALL Australians. Can you help?A: Any increases in the Age Pension are the same regardless of where you live in … [Read more...]

SMSF pension: What happens if I don’t withdraw the annual minimum pension payment?

Q: I have my own super fund and when it came to the end of the year I was supposed to withdraw $11,000. I only withdrew $6000 and I can catch up this year. Is this a reportable breach to the Tax Office?For the benefit of other SuperGuide readers, I’ll first explain the background to your … [Read more...]

Does changing to part-time at 60 years, count as ‘retiring’?

Q: I am 60. I am interested in the condition of release relating to turning 60 and resigning. Is it sufficient to satisfy the ’turning 60 and resign’ condition of release by changing my employment arrangement from full-time to part-time, with the same employer?A: Most super benefits are … [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...]

Transition-to-retirement pension: Can I work full-time and what form do I fill in?

SUPER ALERT! On 3 May 2016 (in the 2016 Federal Budget), the Coalition government announced that, from 1 July 2017, it intends to remove the tax exemption on pension fund earnings financing a transition-to-retirement pension (TRIP). This change, confirmed after the Coalition won the July 2016 … [Read more...]

SMSF pension: How do I calculate my minimum pension payment?

Q: I run our SMSF. I wish to retire at 58. I am a little confused about the 4% minimum rule for pensions. Do I have to withdraw 4% of my total accumulation SMSF fund, or do I move some of the assets into a pension fund and then draw 4% a year?A: You ask a very popular question. The minimum … [Read more...]

Accessing super: Turning 55 or 56 (or 57) is not enough

Q: I am 50 years old, born September 1964. I thought I could access my super funds from age 55 but I have been told I can’t access my funds until age 60. Is this correct? And, when I withdraw my super benefits, is there any tax payable?A: The general rule is that you must have reached your … [Read more...]

Unrestricted access to super, sometimes

Q: I have been a member of my super fund from about 1993. I see from your 14 legal ways to withdraw your super benefits article, that I may be able to access my restricted benefit. You write: “If you’ve been a member of a super fund since before 1 July 1999, you can cash your ‘restricted … [Read more...]