Getting used to the new super changes and what they mean

Executive Manager, SMSF Technical & Private Wealth, SuperConcepts
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Last year’s super changes placed limits on some areas, while in others the super concessions were freed-up.  One or two of them don’t commence until this year. But the real sleeper is the new ATO pension reporting requirements for self-managed funds (SMSFs).

Probably the most controversial of the new changes from 1 July 2017 was placing a $1.6 million limit on the value that could be transferred into retirement phase to commence most pensions.  So that the rules could be regulated, the legislation requires that the ATO is notified when pensions start, stop or other events occur.  The requirement to report is the responsibility of the fund trustees supported by their advisers, accountants or fund administrators.

Anyone drawing a pension on 1 July 2017 or commencing a pension after that time will have the value of the pension reported on commencement and that is likely to be the end of any reporting obligations.  However, for anyone who starts and stops pensions at regular intervals, reporting may be more frequent.  In any case, the golden rule is to report the relevant event as soon as possible.  If the $1.6 million limit is exceeded, any penalty applying will commence from the time the event occurred up to the time the ATO issues its determination. The shorter the time lag the better, as any penalty should be lower.

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