New super rules: what you need to know


Since the election, many of the rules around super contributions have changed. However most of these rules have not yet been implemented.

Concessional contributions

The concessional (before-tax) contributions cap has been reduced to $25,000 a year from July 1, 2017.

how much can you contribute to super

Up until then, you can make concessionally taxed contributions of up to $30,000 or $35,000 - depending on your age.

Anyone under 75 will soon be able to make a concessional contribution. Also, those with under $500,000 in super will be able to hold unused contributions for up to five years.

Low-income earners

The low income super contribution, which was due to end in 2017, has been extended.

This can provide a refund of up to $500 on the tax paid on concessional contributions if you're earning under $37,000.

High-income earners

The tax rate on concessional contributions has been lifted to 30% for Australian's earning over $250,000 (including super).

After-tax contributions

After-tax contributions will now be subject to a lifetime cap of $500,000.

Any contributions made in excess of the cap after May 3 will need to be withdrawn or be subject to penalty tax.

Big super accounts

The amount of super that can be transferred to a retirement or pension account is now capped at $1.6 million, which affects retirees and those on a transition to retirement.

Other changes

From July 2017, transition-to-retirement (TTR) pensions will now attract a 15% tax on earnings.

This is a major change for TTRs which will remain tax-free up until the rule change comes into effect.

The spouse contribution tax offset will also be increased from $10,800 to $37,000 from July 1. One spouse in a couple can now claim a tax offset of up to $540 - only if they contribute to their low-earning spouse's super account.


Steph Nash was a staff writer at Money until 2017.
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