Making retirement easier for members

10 May 2024

More and more Australians are becoming retirees, with 1.6 million people aged 65 and over currently receiving income from their super. This number is expected to grow to 2.5 million in the next decade1.

Member feedback tells us that the retirement system is complex and often confusing. We’re working to fix this. As Australia’s largest super fund2, we’re playing a big part in building a system that works better for all approaching retirement now, as well as those entering retirement down the track.


….‘Not being able to add to my pension super (is a frustration). Had to open up another account with you so I could get my super paid into while doing a bit of casual work’.

AustralianSuper member

‘Retirement feels fairly negative at the moment, I'm definitely not ready. It's amazing what curves life throws that really upset your plans because I planned to retire at 50 but after the divorce I'll be lucky if I retire at 70.’

AustralianSuper member

 

Recommendations to Treasury

We’re advocating to the government and other policy makers to deliver improvements to the retirement system. You may have heard about our recent proposal to Treasury, in the media. Here’s a summary of what we’ve recommended.

  • An ‘account for life’ combining accumulation (saving) and retirement (spending) accounts into a single account. This means members will be able to quickly and easily move their super savings from their working years into an account based pension product like Choice Income – without the need for complex processes and paperwork.

  • An ‘account for life’ would also make it possible for members over preservation age to draw an income while still being able to contribute to the same superannuation account, for example if they choose to work.

  • The transition from work to retirement is no longer an ‘off and on’ transition. Sometimes people return to work after retiring because they need additional income. AustralianSuper’s research also identified a growing theme of working around life – that is, people increasingly finding work as a fulfilling part of their life which they want to continue for longer in their later years.

  • Retirement is now much more fluid. This change would reflect this. It will mean members pay less tax which will help them to have more to spend in their retirement.

  • Allow super funds to help members apply for the Government age pension. Where members are eligible, delaying their application for the age pension can cost them money. It may also mean they eat into savings or superannuation that could otherwise support their retirement.

    “Many members are telling us they are struggling to navigate the complexities of a fragmented system, where the interplay of income from multiple income sources, be it from work, government benefits or private savings, is challenging to manage”.

    Shawn Blackmore – Chief Officer Retirement

  • Changes to allow super funds to provide more support, advice and guidance. This means that you’ll be able to get the help and access the advice you need from AustralianSuper - to confidently make decisions about your investment options and retirement plans and spending the savings you have worked so hard for.

    “The ability to have advice available and obtainable to all members is going to be really important. Some members have quite simple needs and want education. And some members will want full personal advice. Again, members are telling us ‘how do you make it simple for us to understand where to go to get advice? How do you make it more attainable and affordable?”.

    Shawn Blackmore – Chief Officer Retirement


Learn more

At AustralianSuper we believe in a fair and simple superannuation system for all Australians. This is what’s driving our work with government and regulators, like the Australian Prudential Regulation Authority (APRA), and the Australian Tax Office (ATO), as well as industry associations, like the Super Members Council and the Association of Superannuation Funds of Australia.

LEARN MORE ABOUT THIS WORK

 

References:

  1. Source: Treasury.gov.au Retirement phase of superannuation Discussion paper December 2023.
  2. APRA Annual fund-level superannuation statistics June 2023. Released 13 December 2023

 

This may include general financial advice which doesn’t take into account your personal objectives, financial situation or needs. Before making a decision consider if the information is right for you and read the relevant Product Disclosure Statement, available at australiansuper.com/PDS or by calling 1300 300 273. A Target Market Determination (TMD) is a document that outlines the target market a product has been designed for. Find the TMDs at australiansuper.com/TMD.

AustralianSuper Pty Ltd ABN 94 006 457 987, AFSL 233788, Trustee of AustralianSuper ABN 65 714 394 898.


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