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Stapling is here
Australia’s superannuation system is considered one of the world’s best. It was ranked 4th in the world by the 2020 Mercer CFA Institute Global Pension Index, coming in behind The Netherlands, Denmark and Israel.
But there’s always room for improvement. For example, many Australians still have multiple super accounts, which has been an area of concern for the industry.
Introduced as part of the Your Future, Your Super reforms, the new stapling legislation that came into effect on 1 November 2021 aims to fix that problem - and employers are required to play a key part.
* The MyLife MySuper Why Choose flyer is relevant to employers who use MyLife MySuper as their default fund and can be provided in onboarding packs to your new starters, alongside the choice of fund form.
What is stapling?
‘Stapling’ means your new employees will automatically retain their existing super fund when they start their employment with you, unless they choose another fund.
Their stapled super account can then follow them for the duration of their career and whenever they change jobs, their new employer will be required to pay their contributions into that stapled fund if they fail to nominate a fund to have their contributions paid into.
Why the change?
Stapling is only one aspect of the Your Future, Your Super reforms designed to help bolster the retirement savings of Australians, and is joined by three other new measures:
- A new YourSuper comparison tool to see how default MySuper products compare.
- A super fund’s duty to act “in the best financial interest of their members,” is now a legal obligation.
- Underperforming super funds will be ‘named and shamed’.
Specifically, stapling aims to reduce the chance of employees accumulating multiple super accounts after moving from one job to another. Having more than one super account can be costly to employees, as it can mean retirement savings are eroded by paying multiple sets of fees and insurance premiums.
What you need to do
As an employer, you will play a key role in super stapling and how you onboard new employees will change.
From 1 November 2021, you will need to undertake a stapled fund search if the new employee doesn’t give you a completed Standard Choice Form nominating their chosen fund. The stapled fund search can be done by logging into the ATO online services and entering the employee’s details. If a stapled fund exists, super contributions must be paid into that fund.
Your existing employees will not be affected by these changes during their employment with you. You will need to continue to pay their super contributions into the same super fund that you currently do.
New employees will still be able to elect their own choice of super fund, including the employer’s default fund, by completing the Standard Choice Form - regardless of whether they already have a stapled account.
In this instance, employers are not required to complete a stapled fund search.
You will still need to have a default fund option available to new employees who aren’t already a member of a super fund and don’t choose a fund of their own. In this instance, you will need to create an account with your default fund to pay their super contributions to.
Yes, employers can still change their default super fund arrangements.
In most cases, employees would need to consent to rollover their existing balance across to any new fund. Contributions would be required to continue being directed to an employee’s existing account if the account is the employer’s previous default fund, if the account is a ‘stapled’ account, or where the employee has made a choice of fund.
However, you will be able to pay contributions into your new default fund for employees who commence their employment with you after you change your default fund where they do not have a stapled fund or do not complete a Standard Choice Form; or if they elect to have their contributions paid into your default fund.
We're here to help
Whether you’re already an employer or not, we’re here to help you navigate these changes. If you have any questions regarding stapling and the Your Future, Your Super reforms please contact your MyLife MySuper Relationship Manager or contact us on 1300 655 002.
Here when you need us
Speak to your MyLife MySuper Relationship Manager or contact our helpline service.
Togethr Trustees Pty Ltd ABN 64 006 964 049, AFSL 246383 the trustee of the Equipsuper Superannuation Fund ABN 33 813 823 017. This information is provided for general information only. It does not take into account your personal objectives, financial situation or needs and should therefore not be taken as personal advice. You should consider whether it is appropriate for you before acting on it and refer to the relevant Product Disclosure Statement and Target Market Determination for the product which are available at equipsuper.com.au. Past performance is not an indication of future performance.