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

Super Splitting Laws: Basic Terms

The majority of super interests are “accumulation interests.” Accumulation interests are a sort of like a bank account, but due to preservation requirements, you cannot get access to the balance until a specific event occurs - called a “condition of release,” like retirement.

Accumulation interests are quite simple to value. An accumulation interest’s value is usually equal to the sum deposited for the member --- either as member contributions or by the employer --- plus any of the balance’s earnings minus any administrative fees charged by the super fund.

This type of accumulation interest says to be fully vested --- the whole benefit is added to the account of the member in the super fund. Moreover, accumulation interests can be partially vested as well, signifying that there’s an “add on” component aside from the basic fully-vested part of the accumulation interest. These are normally described as “loyalty” systems, where there’s an extra amount that you’ll get if, let's say, you work for your employer for an exact number of years. For example, if your super interest says, “you’re entitled to an extra $10,000 only if you stay with your current employer for ten years,” it’s an accumulation interest that is partially vested.

There are a few worked cases for estimating of an accumulation interest that are partially vested via the valuation factors and methods prepared in the Family Law (Super) Regulations 2001.

Defined Benefit Interest

These are most widespread in the public sector; however some individuals within the private sector have this kind of superannuation as well. Defined benefit interest are hard to value since what you acquired depends on numerous things that occur in the course of your working life --- most usually service length as well as the final average wage. These are events that will take place at some point and consequently cannot be certainly known at the moment.

That's why it is essential to calculate a defined benefit interest’s value basing on numerous assumptions about what’s likely to take place. This is considered as actuarially calculating the interest. The splitting laws of superannuation suggest a technique of carrying out an actuarial valuation of defined benefit super interests. There are loads of worked cases of a superannuation interest’s actuarial valuation, through the valuation factors and methods prepared in the Family Law (Super) Regulations 2001.

Percentage-only interest

The super splitting laws permit some sorts of super interests to be set as “percentage-only” interests. This is because how the super interests vests are uncommon, and it’s, therefore, impossible to actuarially determine an interest’s value.

Interests in several public sector super schemes, as well as the Judges’ Pension systems in Tasmania, Queensland, and New South Wales, have been set as “percentage-only interests” under the Family Law Superannuation Regulations. Following discussions with industries in 2005, super annuities were set as percentage-only interests.

Find out more about Super Splitting Laws at www.australiansuperfinder.com.au

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