Superannuation Alert - 24.4.13

Financial Services eBulletin - 24 April 2013

The Lander & Rogers Superannuation Alert is a brief overview of new developments in the superannuation industry and is in addition to our Superannuation Update, which analyses the main developments of interest in more detail.

  • On 17 April 2013, the Treasury issued a proposals paper seeking comments on its plan to update a number of taxation and superannuation thresholds to reflect changes made by the Australian Bureau of Statistics to the reporting frequency of Average Weekly Ordinary Time Earnings. Submissions are due by 26 April 2013.
  • On 18 April 2013, the House of Representatives Standing Committee on Economics held a public hearing into the Tax and Superannuation Laws Amendment (2013 Measures No 2) Bill 2013. The hearing covered two schedules in the Bill relating to superannuation:

    • Schedule 5 - provides for procedures to consolidate accounts where a member of a superannuation fund may have multiple accounts in that fund.
       
    • Schedule 6 - proposes amendments to the Government superannuation co-contribution for low income earners, including reducing the rate of co-contribution from 100% to 50%, and reducing the higher income threshold from $30,000 to $15,000 above the lower income threshold.
  • On 18 April 2013, ASIC releasedReport 337- SMSFs: Improving the quality of advice given to investors. The extensive report outlines ASIC's findings into the quality of advice provided in the SMSF sector. ASIC's taskforce covered over 100 investor files that were considered as "higher risk" as they had either a balance below $150,000 or relatively undiversified investments. Overall, although ASIC found the majority of SMSF advice was adequate, it found issues in the following areas:
     
    • "the advice was not sufficiently tailored to the investor’s circumstances in that it did not show evidence of prioritising the goals and objectives of the investor; disclosure about product replacement was absent or inadequate;
       
    •  suitable alternatives to an SMSF were not considered; and
       
    • there was inadequate consideration of the investor’s long-term retirement planning objectives."

Further information

All information on this site is of a general nature only and is not intended to be relied upon as, nor to be a substitute for, specific legal professional advice. No responsibility for the loss occasioned to any person acting on or refraining from action as a result of any material published can be accepted.

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