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Budget 2018: living stronger

The Government is focused on encouraging older Australians to better grow and secure their personal retirement funds.

Retirees exempt from work test
An exemption from the work test will be established to allow retired Australians aged between 65-74 who have total super balances below $300,000 in their first year that they do not meet the work test criteria, to make voluntary payments into their superannuation funds.

Retirement income strategy
Superannuation trustees will now be required to produce a retirement income strategy for their superannuation fund members. This is due to new amendments to the Superannuation Industry (Supervision) Act 1993.

The Government is also set to revise the Corporations Act 2001 to ensure providers of retirement income products will supply standardised and simplified reporting to assist with more informed decision making.

Pension Work Bonus
Increase in funding to the Pension Work Bonus will mean that pensioners can now receive up to $300 per fortnight before their pension payments are affected. The Bonus will also cover self-employed individuals, who will be entitled to receive up to $7,800 per year without reducing their pension payments.

Funding for older workers program
Additional funding will be provided over four years to form the Skills Checkpoint for Older Workers program, starting from 2018-19. This measure will focus on supporting employees aged 45 to 70 to remain working for longer.

Improved skills for mature age Australians
Funding will be provided over the next five years to help mature age individuals to remain up to date with changing and new skills needed to remain relevant in their workplace.

Posted on 9 May '18, under General News. No Comments.

Consolidating your super

Chances are, if you have had more than one job, you will most likely have multiple super accounts.

Having multiple super accounts means more fees and less savings. Consolidating all your super accounts into one account can help you to keep track of your super, reduce unnecessary paperwork, and most importantly, save on costs.

The first step in consolidating your super is selecting a fund to move all of your super savings into. When comparing funds, consider funds with lower fees; suitable investment options; extra benefits; funds which have performed well over the last 5 years; and provide appropriate insurance cover for your needs.

Once you have selected a new super fund, you may need to open an account with the fund and provide your employer with the new details. You will then need to rollover super to your chosen fund either online through myGov or you can transfer your super by using a form and sending it to your chosen fund. Some funds have an online process too.

Before consolidating your super, be sure to check the impact on your retirement benefit if you are in a defined benefit fund. It is also good practice to check that you are not losing benefits, such as insurance, and look up the cost of exit fees of your old fund. If you are unsure if consolidating your super is right for you, seek professional advice.

Posted on 12 April '17, under General News. No Comments.

Boost your retirement savings

Pre-retirees can take advantage of a range of strategies to boost their nest egg.

Here are three popular ways to top up your retirement savings:

Maximise contributions
Take advantage of the concessional (pre-tax) and non-concessional (after-tax) contributions by contributing as much as you can afford before reaching the caps. From 1 July 2017, the annual concessional contributions cap will be $25,000 for all age groups.

Consider spouse contributions
Spouse contributions are super contributions made on behalf of your spouse. Generally, you can claim a tax offset of up to $540 per year if your spouse is a low-income earner or is not working. From 1 July 2017, the spouse’s income threshold will be increased to $40,000 to assist more couples to support each other in saving for retirement.

Keep on working
The longer you work means more time to leave your savings untouched and additional time to contribute to super. Delaying retirement leads to a shorter retirement and hence more savings. You may also consider working part-time to enjoy income while waiting until Age pension age.

Posted on 22 February '17, under General News. No Comments.

Launch of our new website

We are proud to announce the launch of our new website. In this section, we will post regular updates on our firm.

Posted on 31 March '09, under General News. No Comments.