I had no idea where my lost super was or the names of the funds. I just new it was scattered everywhere and I should definitely have more than $3,000 in my super. Australian Super Finder found all 7 of my funds and now my balance is almost $50,000. Thank you so much for getting my super back on track. ? Leonie, Thomastown VIC

Super Facts and Tips

Early Access to Super: Withdrawing Benefits

A lot of Australians are experiencing difficult times, mainly as structural changes are affecting the economy.

The hard truth is that mortgage repayments and daily expenses should be maintained even as you suffer illness, redundancy and other types of misfortune. A lot of people are therefore asking how and when they can claim their super benefits.

Withdrawing super benefits entail that you should meet particular superannuation rules. In other words, there are ways to access your super early.

The Importance of Preservation Age

In a lot of cases you won't be able to withdraw your super till you reach the preservation age or retire, which is 55 to those who were born on July 1960, or at least 56 years to those who were born after June of 1960, going to age 60, about the date of birth. A fund member who is born later than June 1964 has a preservation age of 60 years.

What we mean by preservation here is locked away, although some Australians who have super accounts before 1999 may also contain some non-preserved or unrestricted benefits that they can access at any given period.

A preserved benefit does not necessarily mean that your super benefits are a guaranteed or fixed amount; they are just locked or protected until your preservation age or retirement. You can also access your super benefits if you meet a condition of release.

What is your Preservation Age? • Born Before July 1, 1960 55
• Born July 1, 1960, until June 30, 1961 56
• Born July 1, 1961, until June 30, 1962 57
• Born July 1, 1962, until June 30, 1963 58
• Born July 1, 1963, until June 30, 1964 59
• Born on or after July 1, 1964 60

The source above is adapted from the Superannuation Industry's Supervision Regulations of 1994, sub-Regulation 6.01

When Can I Access My Superannuation Benefits?

In the majority of cases, you will be able to get your super only if you meet the condition of release. Meeting a condition of release entails that the preserved benefits can be obtained as soon as possible, provided that your super fund allows you to withdraw your super by the rules.

Although the broader superannuation rules may allow early access, some super funds do not allow access to super benefits wherein the member has applied on the grounds of financial hardship or compassionate grounds. Checking with your superannuation fund whether or not they will allow access on such grounds is advisable.

The Following are the Conditions of Release for Super Benefits: • 60 to 64 years of age and stopped working
• Retirement
• Reached 65 years
• Decision to begin TRIP or transition-to-retirement pension
• A preserved amount of less than $200
• Stopped employment and kept pre-1999 superannuation benefits
• Extreme Financial Difficulty
• Compassionate grounds
• Terminal Illness
• Temporary resident permanently departs from Australia
• Permanent incapacity or permanent disability
• Temporary incapacitation
• Death

We hope this information has been helpful to you. For more helpful information on super, visit www.australiansuperfinder.com.au

All information on this website is of a general nature only. We have not taken into account your financial situation, needs or objectives. You need to make up your own mind and ascertain yourself if it is right for you. We recommend you read the product disclosure statement(s) and the financial services guide before making any financial decision.

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