It is important you check you are being paid the right amount of superannuation by your employer following a recent increase in national super.
On 1 July there were several changes to superannuation that will affect Health Professionals. The main one is that your employer must now pay more into your super from 1 July 2013 as a result of a rise in the Super Guarantee (SG) rate to 9.25%.
This increase is the first step in a gradual increase in the SG from 9% to 12% over the next seven years. (But the Federal Coalition under Tony Abbott has indicated they may not follow through with the super increases if they are elected later this year.)
Other Government changes to super that took effect from 1 July include:
* A Low Income Super Contribution that means if you are a part-time or casual Health Professional earning less than $37,000 a year, the Australian Government will put up to $500 extra into your super each year.
* New types of default accounts called ‘MySuper that will have low fees and simple features so you don’t pay for services you don’t need. For Health Professionals in a non-profit fund such as HESTA or Health Super, this change will have very little impact, since your fund is likely to already be MySuper compliant.
* New ways to keep track of your super in multiple accounts and consolidate them so that you’re not paying multiple fees with a free online system called SuperSeeker.
* Changes to the caps on how much tax is paid when you boost your super by making your own super contributions or by salary sacrificing some of your pay into super.
* New rules on financial advice to ban commissions and ensure all financial planners offer advice in the client’s best interests. If you’re in an Industry SuperFund such as HESTA you’ve got nothing to worry about because these funds have never paid sales commissions or on-going advice fees.
Another positive development is that many basic super-related financial advice questions can now be answered by your super fund as part of your membership. All you have to do is phone your super fund to get some assistance with issues like: “Am I going to have enough to retire on?”, “Am I in the right investment” and “Have I got enough life insurance?”.