Superannuation one of the big 3 political “footballs”

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By Brett Griffiths

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Bill Shorten, as leader of the Federal Australian Labor Party, announced during his speech at the National Press Club on 24 August 2016 their position on the Federal Government’s proposed superannuation changes, which they announced in the May 3 Budget .

As predicted, Labor are opposing the concept of non-concessional contributions (NCC) made between 1 July 2007 and 3 May 2016 being counted towards the proposed $500,000 lifetime cap, preferring this to be effective from Budget night itself.

Labor also announced a lowering of the proposed lowering in the Div 293 threshold, meaning that people earning over $200,000 in personal income will pay 30% tax on concessional contributions rather than 15%.  The Budget proposed this to be lowered to $250,000 from $300,000.

Labor have also stated they will oppose the proposed changes of:

  • Allowing the carry forward of unused concessional contribution caps for superannuants with less than $500,000 in super;
  • Removing the “work test” requirement for people aged 65-74; and
  • Increasing the access to concessional contributions through the removal of the “10% rule” allowing employees to make personal concessional contributions.

These three announcement were widely touted as the silver lining in what was the biggest shake-up in the superannuation system since 2006. The intent with these three measures being to increase flexibility for all Australians regarding their ability to make concessional contributions and save for their retirement.

As there was no mention of other proposed Budget changes (the $1.6m pension cap, the reducing to $35,000 of the concessional contributions cap, and the removal of Anti-Determent payments on the death of a member), it appears there is common ground on these proposals.

So it goes that Superannuation, being one of the big three political footballs (Negative Gearing and Capital Gains Tax being the two) is set to be kicked around the halls of Parliament.

We can only hope that, like the football season, the Super football grand final is in early October.

Want to know more?

If you would like to know more about the issues raised in this article, please contact Brett Griffiths our Superannuation Advisory Director for assistance.

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