Around $13.8 billion in Australians’ hard earned wages is waiting to be claimed, in the form of lost and unclaimed superannuation.
Data released by the Australian Taxation Office (ATO) for the financial year ending June 2020 shows that the Morrison Government’s reforms have had a big impact, reducing unclaimed super by $7 billion compared to 30 June 2019. But there is more to be done.
NSW tops the nation in unclaimed and lost amounts at over $3 billion, and 6 of the top 10 postcodes. Victoria and QLD with around $2 billion, WA with just over $1 billion, SA with $798 million, the ACT with $231 million, Tasmania with $135 million and the NT with $161 million.
Workers may have lost or unclaimed super if they have:
- Changed their name
- Moved jobs or changed addresses
- Forgotten to update details with their super fund in the last few years
Lost super occurs when members have lost contact with their fund or the member’s account has been inactive for a period of time. By law, the fund is required to transfer certain accounts to the ATO, which then becomes ‘unclaimed super money’.
Unlike super funds, the ATO does not charge fees, and thanks to reforms passed by the Morrison Government, proactively consolidates any unclaimed super into an eligible, active super account where possible.
Minister Jane Hume said, “$7 billion in reclaimed super is a terrific outcome for thousands of Australians who have been reunited with their own hard earned wages.”
“There remains around $13.8 billion in unclaimed super, I encourage all Australians to take a moment to login to the ATO via MyGov and check if it’s yours- it only takes a moment.”
“Our reforms empower the ATO to do this proactively and without fees, a demonstration of the Morrison Government’s commitment to building a stronger and more efficient superannuation system for all Australians.”
The Government’s Protecting Your Super reforms have resulted in the ATO proactively reuniting more Australians with their lost and unclaimed super. Since 1 November 2019 to 28 February 2021 almost 3.3 million accounts worth almost $4.3 billion has been proactively reunited and paid out to their rightful owners.
This includes approximately 2.3 million accounts worth $3.7 billion that have been transferred into individuals’ active super accounts, and approximately 995,000 accounts worth $573 million paid proactively into individuals’ bank accounts – a power that only the ATO has.
Further information about lost and unclaimed superannuation is available on the ATO website.
Australians can find lost superannuation in just a few clicks via the ATO, through MyGov. This could put thousands of dollars back in their super funds - ready to earn the magic of compounding interest in the super system. More information on the ways to search for lost and unclaimed super can be found on the ATO website.