Super Guide for the self-employed

Self-employed individuals are not required to set aside money to pay superannuation contributions. Self-employed individuals can still take advantage of the superannuation laws by making tax-deductible super contributions and/or non-concessional (after-tax) super contributions.

Such individuals can also take advantage of the co-contribution scheme, and/or can potentially take advange of the small business retirement exemption and other retirement-related incentives. For an individual to be able to make tax-deductible super contributions, they need to be: wholly self-employed as a sole trader or in a partnership; or not employed; or, earn part of their income as an employee but earn less than 10% of their total income from work as an employee.


The employee 10% income test applies even when an employer has paid Superannuation Guarantee on this employee-based income. If a self-employed individual has structured his or her business as a company however, then they must pay Superannuation Guarantee to eligible employees (including himself or herself).

Set out below are all SuperGuide articles explaining Super Guide for the self-employed.

Who can make tax-deductible super contributions?

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Generally speaking, you can make two types of super contributions: non-concessional (after-tax) contributions and concessional (before-tax) contributions. Concessional contributions can also include tax-deductible super contributions, where an individual claims a deduction. For the 2014/2015 … [Read more...]

Tax-deductible super contributions: Meeting the 10% income test

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Q: I work for myself but I also have a part-time job. I have been told that even though I receive SG from my part-time employer, I can also make tax-deductible super contributions. Is that true? And if it is true, how does it work? Individuals who are self-employed, or who are not employed, are … [Read more...]

Managing capital gains tax with super contributions

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Q: I am about to make a capital gain of about $200,000 on an investment property I have owned for several years. My marginal tax rate is 32.5% and I am an employee, and 43 years old. I want to contribute the equivalent of the capital gain to my super, which is not self-managed, so I can save some … [Read more...]

Co-contributions: Can I claim the tax-free bonus as a property investor?

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Q: I am not working but I source my income from rents derived from my property investments. Am I able to participate in the Government co-contribution scheme? For an Australian to be eligible for the co-contribution scheme they need to be earning 10% or more of their income from eligible … [Read more...]

Tax-deductible super contributions: Claim no more than your income

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Q: If I make a personal concessional payment of $25,000 (tax-deductible) and a personal $150,000 non-concessional (non-tax deductible) payment into my SMSF and my personal taxable income for 2013/2014 is $20,000, are there possible tax penalties because I’m claiming $5,000 more than my taxable … [Read more...]

Co-contributions: Can I claim the tax-free bonus for the financial year that I retire?

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Q: I’m aged 69 and I will retire in December 2012. Am I entitled to make a deposit into my super fund and receive the Government co-contribution for the 2012/2013 year? A: If an individual satisfies the age test, the work test and the income test relating to the co-contribution, then the … [Read more...]