- 1. Superannuation Guarantee rate of 9.5%
- 2. You must earn at least $450 a month
- 3. Under-18s must earn $450 plus work at least 30 hours
- 4. Over-70s also entitled to SG
- 5. SG paid quarterly, at a minimum
- 6. SG cap for high-income earners
- 7. Is your pay quoted before/after super?
- 8. Don’t let your salary sacrifice cut your SG
- 9. Since July 2017, employees can make tax-deductible super contributions
- 10. SG contributions count towards concessional cap
- Want to learn how you can boost your super?
Note: The Superannuation Guarantee rate is 9.5% for the 2017/2018 year (from 1 July 2017 to 30 June 2018), and 9.5% for the 2018/2019 year (from 1 July 2018 through to 30 June 2019). The SG rate remains unchanged at 9.5% since 1 July 2014 and will remain at 9.5% through to 30 June 2021, increasing to 10% from July 2021, and eventually to 12% from July 2025.
If you work as an employee, and you satisfy certain minimum requirements, your employer must pay Superannuation Guarantee (SG) contributions on your behalf, to a super fund.
Here is a list of 10 of the most important SG facts that you need to know.
1. Superannuation Guarantee rate of 9.5%
Your employer must make superannuation contributions, at least quarterly, based on an annual entitlement of the equivalent of 9.5% of your ordinary time earnings for the 2017/2018 year (1 July 2017 to 30 June 2018), and for the 2018/2019 year. Likewise, your employer should have made these super contributions at the SG rate of 9.5% for the 2016/2017 year (1 July 2016 to 30 June 2017), for the 2015/2016 financial year (1 July 2015 to 30 June 2016), and for the 2014/2015 financial year (1 July 2014 to 30 June 2015), and at the SG rate of 9.25% for the 2013/2014 financial year (1 July 2013 to 30 June 2014).
Before July 2013, the required percentage was 9% of ordinary earnings. Over the next 7 years, the SG percentage will gradually increase to 12% (by July 2025).
For more information on the SG rate increase see SuperGuide article Employer super contributions: SG rate 9.5% for 2018/2019 and 2017/2018 years.
2. You must earn at least $450 a month
You must earn at least $450 a month to be eligible for SG. If you do private or domestic work, such as babysitting, gardening or cleaning, then you must also work at least 30 hours, and earn at least $450 a month to be eligible for SG.
For more information see SuperGuide article Super for beginners, part 23: My pay changes every week. Am I paid the right super?
3. Under-18s must earn $450 plus work at least 30 hours
If you’re younger than 18 years old, then you must work at least 30 hours and earn at least $450 a month to be eligible for SG.
For more information see SuperGuide article Super for beginners, part 2: Casual work or starting first job.
4. Over-70s also entitled to SG
If you are aged 70 or over, you are now entitled to Superannuation Guarantee entitlements. Since the 2013/2014 financial year, eligible individuals aged 70 and over receive SG contributions from employers.
For more information see SuperGuide article Employer super (SG) contributions paid for over-70s.
5. SG paid quarterly, at a minimum
Your Superannuation Guarantee entitlement must be paid to your super fund at least every three months. If not paid, you can complain to the Australian Tax Office.
For more information see SuperGuide articles Super for beginners, part 18: My employer hasn’t paid my SG. What can I do? and Help! Where did my employer pay my super (SG) contributions?
6. SG cap for high-income earners
If you’re a high income-earner, then your SG entitlement is subject to a cap, known as the maximum contributions base. For the 2017/2018 year, your employer is required to make SG contributions representing the equivalent of 9.5% of your ordinary time earnings up to an annual limit of $211,040 (measured quarterly, $52,760). For the 2016/2017 year, your employer was required to make SG contribution on 9.5% of your ordinary time earnings up to annual salary limit of $206,480 (which is measured on a quarterly basis, on $51,620 each quarter). For the 2015/2016 year, your employer was required to make SG contributions on 9.5% of your ordinary time earnings up to an annual salary limit of $203,240 (which was measured on a quarterly basis, on $50,810 each quarter).
For more information see SuperGuide article Maximum SG employer contributions for 2018/2019 year (and previous years).
7. Is your pay quoted before/after super?
When you start a new job, check whether your pay is $x plus super, or $x including super, and what that means for your total remuneration package.
For more information see SuperGuide article Superannuation Guarantee: Many Aussies miss out on SG increase.
8. Don’t let your salary sacrifice cut your SG
Be careful when negotiating salary sacrifice arrangements — your employer could cut your SG due to the quirks of the salary sacrifice rules.
For more information see SuperGuide articles Superannuation Guarantee: Many Aussies miss out on SG increase and Salary sacrifice and super: A guide for employees and employers.
Note: Since 1 July 2017, employees are able to make tax-deductible super contributions, which may assist employees where an employer is unfairly reducing SG entitlements due to a salary sacrificing arrangement (see SuperGuide article Employees can now make tax-deductible super contributions (since July 2017)).
9. Since July 2017, employees can make tax-deductible super contributions
Since1 July 2017, all individuals (employed, unemployed or self-employed) under the age of 75 are able to claim tax deductions for personal super contributions, subject to the concessional contributions cap, and taking into account previously-made super contributions for a financial year. Such a measure will assist Australians who may be partly employed and partly self-employed, or assist individuals who work for employers who don’t accommodate salary sacrificing, or assist workers where an employer reduces a person’s SG entitlements if they salary sacrifice.
For more information on this new super rule, see SuperGuide article Employees can now make tax-deductible super contributions (since July 2017). For information on the over-65s work test, see SuperGuide article Over-65s work test: How does it operate?
Note: For the 2016/2017 year and earlier years, even when you received SG contributions, you may still have been eligible to make tax-deductible super contributions. Check out SuperGuide article Tax-deductible super contributions: No longer need to meet 10% income test. Also, you can find more information about contractors and SG by phoning the Australian Taxation Office’s Superannuation Infoline on 13 10 20, or by visiting the ATO’s website at ato.gov.au.
10. SG contributions count towards concessional cap
Your employer’s SG contributions count towards your concessional (before tax) contributions cap.
For more information, see SuperGuide article Super concessional (before-tax) contributions: 2018/2019 survival guide.
Want to learn how you can boost your super?
Become a SuperGuide Premium member and access expert guides on how much you can contribute, salary sacrificing, tax-deductible super contributions, contributions caps and contributions strategies, best-performing super funds, the latest super rates and thresholds, and other super strategies.
Includes more than 650 articles, how-to guides, checklists, tips, calculators, case studies, quizzes and a monthly newsletter.
Find out more