Frequently Asked Questions
Access Your Super FAQs
Early release of superannuation benefits on specified grounds. Frequently asked questions.This page provides you with important information about the early access of superannuation benefits in circumstances of severe financial hardship and/ or compassionate grounds.
What’s my Commonwealth Preservation Age?Your Commonwealth Government preservation age depends on your date of birth.
Date of birth Commonwealth Government preservation age Before 1 July 1960 55 1 July 1960 to 30 June 1961 56 1 July 1961 to 30 June 1962 57 1 July 1962 to 30 June 1963 58 1 July 1963 to 30 June 1964 59 After 30 June 1964 60
Can Lump Sum and Pension Scheme members apply?
As a Lump Sum or Pension Scheme member, you can apply for early release of super on compassionate grounds or severe financial hardship from the Rollover Account component of your scheme only (if applicable). You can’t be granted early release from your Member Account or Defined Benefit component.
How long will the process take?
Assuming all the documentary evidence to support your application is correct, you should receive notification of our decision within 15 business days of the date of receipt. Please allow a further 10 business days for the benefit to be paid.
How do I apply?
You’ll need to complete an application form, and provide the required evidence to support your application. Please contact us on (08) 8214 7800 to discuss your eligibility and obtain a copy of the form.
- Completed Early Release of Superannuation Benefits on Specified Grounds form.
- Certified copy of Proof of Identity. Please refer to the following fact sheet.
- Full and current bank statements for the last three months in your name and your partner.
- Copies of evidence to support the application
How much can I receive if my application is approved on compassionate grounds?
The amount released to you will depend on the evidence provided and the amount needed to cover the expenses presented in your application. We will also need to deduct a higher amount from your super account in order to allow for any tax that must be paid. Therefore, you should take this into account when determining the amount you are applying to access.
How much can I receive if my application is approved on severe financial hardship?
If you are under preservation age and your application is approved on the grounds of severe financial hardship, you will receive a single lump sum between $1,000 and $10,000 (inclusive of tax). The amount released will depend on the evidence provided. In order to allow for tax that must be paid on the payment(s), we will need to deduct a higher amount from your super account, up to a maximum of $10,000 in a 12 month period (inclusive of any tax).
If you are over preservation age and your application is approved on financial hardship grounds, you can withdraw up to your account balance. Any tax will be deducted from the payment. It is important to understand that in all cases, the actual amount that will be approved for release will be determined, based on the assessment of your application.
What happens if I already applied for early release to the ATO or DHS?
If you already applied directly to the Commonwealth agency (ATO or Services Australia) for the release of benefits and the Commonwealth approved the release, we may accept this approval and release the funds. You must forward this approval from the ATO to us for processing. Please contact us on (08) 8214 7800 to discuss and obtain a copy of the form.
What tax is payable?
Generally, any superannuation benefits that are released prior to reaching your preservation age are subject to tax. The tax payable is based on the components of your benefit and your age. If a benefit is approved, Super SA will release an amount to you net of any tax payable.
How will an early release reduce my retirement benefits?
It is important to understand that any release of benefits from your superannuation account will reduce the amount you will receive in retirement. We recommend that you seek financial advice before making any decision about superannuation and in particular early release.
You can choose your own financial planner or you can take advantage of the service available through Industry Fund Services (IFS). If you don’t have an existing relationship with a planner, you can contact the Financial Advice Association Australia (FAAA) and access their “Find a financial planner” service to locate an FAAA member near you. The financial planners at IFS can advise you about the options available to SA public sector employees.
If you would like to learn more about financial planning, or to make an appointment with an IFS planner, please call the Super SA Advice Administration team on 1300 162 348
What is the definition of a dependant?
Most compassionate grounds allow expenses to be claimed for you or a dependant. Under the Commonwealth rules, a dependant includes your spouse, child, or a person with whom you have an interdependency relationship. Documentation supporting the dependant’s dependency should also be provided, such as a medical certificate that confirms that you provide personal domestic support and/or medical care to the person.
What is the definition of a registered medical practitioner
Must be a medical doctor or specialist registered with the Australian Health Practitioner Regulation Agency. Physiotherapists, psychologists, chiropractors and occupational therapists are not registered medical practitioners and their reports are not considered to be certified evidence, but they can supply additional information.
What is the definition of a specialist?Must be a registered medical/dental practitioner who has had further medical training, holds further qualifications and is a fellow of a specialist medical college or is registered in their state as a specialist. This includes a consultant physician. Any specialist giving an opinion should be specialised in the area in which they are giving that opinion. Consultant physicians should clearly state their areas of specialisation in the certification.
What is the definition of life threatening?Where it is likely that within 12 months the patient will die or suffer an irreversible degeneration of a condition that if left untreated would result in premature death if the individual does not receive the recommended treatment.
What is the definition of medical transport?Includes transport (land, water, air) to access medical treatment such as taxi, public transport, vehicle repairs and running costs or the purchase of a reliable second-hand vehicle. The certification also needs to confirm that the transport is required to access medical treatment, the frequency of the medical treatment, the location of the medical appointments and the length of time the treatment is required.