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SMSFs: Getting SuperStream right

Although the new SuperStream standard for superannuation payments can provide SMSF trustees with a number of benefits, around five per cent of SMSFs fail to comply with the SuperStream requirements.

Under the new SuperStream system, a non-related employer must send superannuation contributions to an SMSF electronically, using an electronic service address (ESA). For this to happen, an SMSF must first be registered with a messaging provider to obtain an ESA.

One an SMSF has been registered, the messaging provider will link the SMSF to an ESA. The employer cannot send SuperStream contributions electronically to the SMSF until this is done.

It is important that SMSF trustees check with the service provider that their ESA is active and is linked to their SMSF. If the ESA is inactive, the super contributions submitted by the employer will be rejected. SMSF trustees must also ensure that their employer has their Australian Business Number and bank account details. Employers who do not have this mandatory information may accidentally direct the employee’s super contributions to a default super fund, instead of to the employee’s SMSF.

The new SuperStream system helps ensure that employer contributions are paid in a consistent, timely and efficient manner to member accounts. It also provides a reliable flow of payments and information on contributions and achieves fewer data and payment errors due to the better integration of employers’ payroll systems.

Posted on 2 October '15 by , under Super.

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What to consider when consolidating your super

The ATO reported that 45% of working Australians were not aware that they had multiple super accounts in 2016. Having multiple super accounts is particularly common for individuals who have had more than one job. If this is you, it is important to identify and manage your super accounts because having more than one can be costly as a result of account fees from multiple funds.To combat this, you may want to consolidate your super, which moves all your super into one account. Not only does this save on fees, but it also makes your super easier to manage and keep track of.

Before consolidating your super, it is important to do the following:

Research your funds' policy
Compare your active super accounts so you can make the right choice about which one you should close. Things to assess include:

  • Exit fees
  • Insurance policies
  • Investment options
  • Ongoing service fees
  • Performance of the funds

Check employer contributions
Changing funds may affect how much your employer contributes, as some employers contribute more to certain funds. Check your current accounts to see if changing funds will affect this. Once you have selected a super fund, regardless of whether you choose a new super fund or one of your existing ones, provide your employer with the details they need to pay super into your selected account.

Gather the relevant information
When consolidating your super, you will need to have the following details ready:

  • Your tax file number.
  • Proof of identity. This could include your driver's license, birth certificate or passport.
  • Your fund's superannuation product identification number (SPIN).
  • Your fund's unique superannuation identifier (USI).
  • Details of your previous fund.

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