Find lost and unclaimed super before threshold increases to $6,000: ASFA

The Association of Superannuation Funds of Australia is urging Australians to reclaim their superannuation before it goes into government consolidated revenue.

Association of Superannuation Funds of Australia (ASFA) CEO Dr Martin Fahy said Australians should do themselves a “festive favour” and claim their lost and unclaimed superannuation.

“$2.5 billion currently sits in consolidated revenue as unclaimed super,” he said.

“Super belongs to individuals and families so gift yourself and give super a go to boost your savings. Take an interest in your super now, while you may have a bit of holiday time, then reap the long term rewards. In addition to getting your money back from the government there are compound interest benefits from being invested in super.”

Lost super can be found through the myGov service.

“There are currently around 300,000 people with more than six super accounts, so it’s clear many could enjoy a boost to their funds by consolidating missing amounts, particularly balances that have or will soon go to the ATO as unclaimed,” said Dr Fahy.

Currently lost and inactive super accounts under $4,000 are transferred to consolidated revenue, via the ATO. From 31 December 2016 this threshold increases to $6,000. ASFA estimates that around 100,000 additional accounts could be captured by the increased threshold. 130,000 extra accounts were transferred to the ATO when the threshold increased from $2,000 to $4,000 on 31 December 2015.

ASFA says that a person with $5,000 in super taken by the ATO loses around $225 a year in earning on average. ATO-held superannuation only receives ‘interest’ at the rate of CPI.

“Fund members with missing or lost accounts are more likely to generate earnings with their balance in a super fund, rather than with the ATO, where balances only attract interest at a current rate of 1.5 per cent per year,” said Dr Fahy.

“Additionally, at least half the inactive accounts, whether it’s $2,000, $4,000 or $6,000 are likely to have insurance cover. Acting now can preserve these benefits from being lost.”

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