According to the Australian Tax office, Australians have more than $20 billion in lost and unclaimed Superannuation. Some of this money could be yours. Have you ever changed job, name or address?
Your retirement nest egg could be bigger than you think.
What is lost and unclaimed Super?
The ATO have advised that there are more than 6.2 million superannuation accounts with no current owners across Australia. Super funds must report these accounts to the ATO twice a year. The criteria for the super fund reporting lost superannuation is:
· The fund is unable to contact you. The super fund does not have your current address and has tried without success to contact you in the last 12 months
· Your account is inactive. No contributions or rollovers have been received in the account in the last 5 years.
The ATO are actively making efforts to reunite these accounts with their owners. In the last financial year $3 million was consolidated into active superannuation accounts across Australia but there is still a long way to go to ensure that Australians can access all their superannuation in retirement. The ATO have advised that their data shows that some accounts have large amounts of superannuation in them. One has $2.2 million.
Unclaimed Super is different to lost super. Unclaimed super is money that you would have access to and be able to withdraw but the super fund has been unable to contact you. Generally, this means that you have either met a condition of release i.e. retired or it is a deceased members account.
How to find your lost and unclaimed super?
There are just a few simple steps to finding your lost super:
· Create a myGov account at www.mygov.com.au.
· Link your new myGov account to your ATO account
· If you already have a myGov account just click on the ATO section
· Go to the Super tab
· From the Super tab you can –
o See details of all your super accounts, even some you may have forgotten about
o See details of any super that the ATO may be holding on your behalf
Making sure you have all your super accounted for is essential for ensuring your best retirement outcome. You should remain engaged with your superannuation throughout your career and make sure your Super Fund is on your list of addresses to change when you move to a new house.
For more information on how to manage your super and view all your super accounts including lost and unclaimed super, visit ato.gov.au/checkyoursuper.