Super Alert – 8 November 2019

08 November 2019

This week’s Super Alert notes the ATO’s updated information to employers regarding salary sacrificing super, and an update on advice and guidance on superannuation issues under development, and AFCA celebrating its one-year anniversary.

ATO provides updated information to employers regarding salary sacrificing super

On 31 October 2019, the ATO updated its website to provide information for employers regarding salary sacrificing superannuation. Among other things, the ATO issued a reminder that: ‘From 1 January 2020, salary sacrificed super contributions cannot be used to reduce [an employer’s] super guarantee obligations, regardless of the amount [their] employee elects to salary sacrifice. This means for the purposes of super guarantee… the salary sacrificed amount will not count towards [their] super guarantee obligations’.

Please click here to read more.

ATO provides update on advice and guidance on superannuation issues under development

On 1 November 2019, the ATO updated its website in relation to the advice and guidance on superannuation issues that it is currently developing.

Some of the advices in development include:

  • An Addendum to Taxation Ruling TR 2013/5 to ‘address the consequences of a superannuation income stream commencing or ceasing’, which is expected to be completed in February 2020; and
  • A Law Administration practice statement to ‘provide guidelines on the Commissioner’s discretion to exclude illegally accessed superannuation benefits from assessable income’, which is expected to be completed in April/May 2020.

Please click here to read more.

AFCA celebrates its one-year anniversary

On 1 November 2019, the Australian Financial Complaints Authority (AFCA) issued a media release to celebrate ’12 months since it opened its doors as the nation’s one-stop-shop for complaints about financial firms’.

Among other things, AFCA highlighted the following statistics:

  • Between 1 November 2018 and 31 October 2019, there was a ‘40% increase in complaints to AFCA compared to predecessors’;
  • ‘Australians in dispute with their bank, insurance provider, super fund, or other financial firms have lodged 73,000 complaints… and have been awarded $185 million in compensation, in the first 12 months of [AFCA’s] operation’;
  • Around 77% of all complaints were resolved, with ‘the majority of those resolved in 60 days or less’; and
  • Approximately 70% of complaints were ‘resolved in favour of the complainant’.

Please click here to read more.

This article was written by Natalie Cambrell, Partner, Sanela Osmanovic, Associate and Joseph Cheung, Solicitor.

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