2017-2018 Federal Budget Announcement
In the Federal Budget announcement on Tuesday 9th May 2017, some further changes that will affect superannuation, were released. Below you will find a summary of those changes that will potentially impact Super SA’s schemes and products.
You can also find further information via the links below to Treasury’s fact sheets.
Please note that the announcements are proposals only and will not be final until legislation is passed.
First Home Super Saver Scheme (FHSSS)
Super SA schemes/products affected: Super SA Select and SA Ambulance Super Scheme
In a move aimed at helping first home buyers build a housing deposit, the Federal Government has proposed to allow voluntary contributions to super funds to be withdrawn for the purposes of buying a first home.
The Scheme is designed to allow first home buyers to make voluntary contributions to their super to build a deposit for their first home. Contributions (via salary sacrifice) of up to $15,000 can be made each year and up to a total of $30,000 withdrawn when required, from 1 July 2018, subject to the terms and conditions of the FHSSS.
Where a couple is involved, both partners are treated as individuals for the purposes of the maximum amounts they are eligible to salary sacrifice for the First Home Super Saver Scheme.
Draft legislation is not yet released on the Government's proposed First Home Super Savers Scheme. However, the Scheme will be administered by the Australian Taxation Office.
Further information is available from the Federal Government Treasury factsheet.
This option is not open to members of untaxed schemes, such as Triple S.
Effective: 1 July 2017 First Home Super Saver Scheme Factsheet
Contributing the proceeds of downsizing into superannuation
Super SA schemes/products affected: Super SA Flexible Rollover Product
Retirees aged 65 and over who downsize their homes will be able to contribute up to $300,000 of the proceeds into superannuation as a non-concessional (post-tax) contribution. This will be allowed in addition to existing super rules and caps including the total super balance cap of $1.6 million. The measure is exempt from the work test however it will not be exempt from the $1.6 million transfer balance cap (which limits the amount of money you can put into a pension phase account where the earnings are tax free).
Effective: 1 July 2018 Reducing barriers to downsizing Factsheet
Reinstatement of pensioner concession card
Earlier this year, some pensioners affected by the changes to the age pension assets test taper rate lost their Pensioner Concession Cards. Changes announced in this budget reinstate pension cards for those affected.
New Financial Complaints Authority for consumers
The Government is proposing one-stop External Dispute Resolution (EDR) scheme to replace the Financial Services Ombudsman, the Credit and Investments Ombudsman and the Superannuation Complaints Tribunal. Importantly, the Government has stated that the existing statutory protections applying to superannuation disputes will still continue.
Effective: 1 July 2018
These recent Federal Budget announcements are in addition to the Budget changes legislated previously for introduction as at 1 July 2017.
This article was prepared for the use of member funds of Australian Institute of Superannuation Trustees.