Superannuation Alert 5.3.15
Financial Services eBulletin - 5 March 2015
The Lander & Rogers Superannuation Alert is a brief overview of new developments in the superannuation industry.
- On 2 March 2015, the ATO issued an information bulletin entitled ATO encourages employers to prepare for SuperStream which encourages employers to prepare for the introduction of SuperStream. The ATO expects that most medium and large employers will implement Super Stream between July and December 2015, with small employers being required to implement the system by no later than June 2016.
- On 27 February 2015, the ATO updated its key superannuation rates and thresholds that apply to contributions and benefits, employment termination payments, super guarantee and co-contributions.
- On 27 February 2015, the Court of Appeal of the Supreme Court of Western Australia handed down judgment in Bajaj v Beachtown Investments Pty Ltd  WASCA 37. In that case an ex-employee sued his former employer claiming superannuation contributions (among other categories of damages). The Court held that the payment of a travel allowance was not within the definition of 'ordinary time earnings' within section 6 of the Superannuation Guarantee (Administration) Act 1992 (Cth).
- On 26 February 2015, the ATO updated its website in relation to the requirement for employers who had not met their superannuation obligations to lodge a Superannuation Guarantee Charge Statement to the ATO. The ATO states that it will be undertaking audits from July 2015 in relation to employers' superannuation obligations.
- On 25 February 2015, the Tax and Superannuation Laws Amendment (2014 Measures No.7) Bill 2014 was passed by the House of Representatives. The Bill makes various amendments affecting superannuation including in relation to excess non-concessional superannuation contributions and CGT. It also amends tax legislation "to ensure that individuals whose superannuation benefits are involuntarily transferred from one superannuation plan to another plan without their request or consent are not disadvantaged through the transfer… [and also] amend the TAA 1953 to remove the need for a roll-over benefit statement to be provided to an individual whose superannuation benefits are involuntarily transferred".
- On 25 February 2015, the Treasury Legislation Amendment (Repeal Day) Bill 2014 received Royal Assent. Among other things, the Bill amends the Superannuation Industry (Supervision) Act 1993 by removing the payslip reporting requirements.
- On 25 February 2015, the Statute Law Revision Bill (No 2) 2014 received Royal assent and became the Statute Law Revision Act (No 1) 2015. The Act amends superannuation legislation by repealing spent provisions, correcting technical and semantic errors made as a result of drafting and clerical mistakes, and modernising out-of-date language.
- On 25 February 2015, the Superannuation Complaints Tribunal (SCT) released its Quarterly Bulletin (Issue No 78) for the December 2014 quarter. Among other things, it notes that administration complaints were the most frequent, followed by death benefit complaints and disability complaints.
- On 20 February 2015, the ATO updated its website regarding SuperStream data and payment standards.
- On 19 February 2015, APRA released its Quarterly Superannuation Performance and Quarterly MySuper Statistics reports for December 2014. The Quarterly Superannuation Performance report highlights, amongst other matters, that superannuation assets totalled $1.93 trillion as at the end of the December 2014 quarter. It also noted that the annual industry-wide rate of return for superannuation entities with more than four members was 7.9 per cent as at the end of December 2014. It reported that MySuper products rose to $395.7 billion as at the end of December 2014, which reflects a 36.5 per cent increase in total assets in MySuper products since December 2013.
- On 18 February 2015, the Treasury released exposure draft Tax and Superannuation Law Amendment (2015 Measures No. 1 - release conditions for non-concessional contributions) Regulation 2015 (Cth). The Treasury explains that the Draft Regulation makes changes to the law in order to implement the 'Fairer Taxation of Excess Non-concessional Contributions' reforms. These reforms were introduced on 4 December 2014 as part of the Tax and Superannuation Laws Amendment (2014 Measures No. 7) Bill 2014 (Cth). The Bill is currently before Parliament.
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