Willed Australia

Your Will and your Superannuation: What you need to know

Superannuation should be your asset. It should be invested wisely in growing assets to help your wealth grow even if you are unable to actively manage your savings. Every Australian will have a superannuation balance on their death, and it could be a substantial amount.

The superannuation system is not designed for the short term financial needs of those who are not able to actively manage their funds. Most of the contributions to superannuation are tax deductible, but there is a limit to how much can be deducted. All in all however, it does add up to a large inheritance for your next of kin or chosen beneficiaries.

However, superannuation is a little more complicated than most assets, for one simple reason. It can’t be entirely granted or managed through a Will, and you do need to take extra actions and precautions in order to direct it to the right people. Those actions need to be organised with your superannuation fund itself.

This is called a binding death nomination.

A binding death nomination is a nomination, made by a holder of a superannuation balance to a beneficiary under the plan to receive the benefits of a defined fund payable at death, if the beneficiary dies or becomes incapacitated.

A binding death nomination is what directs your superannuation fund to pay your balance out to the right people. It’s a directive that the fund is legally required to follow. You can set this up by contacting your fund directly and making arrangements with them. Generally, they will provide you with a form to fill out and lodge in order to keep your plans organised.

Superannuation and your Will.

That being said, it is still advisable to mention your arrangements in your Will, in order to keep everything black and white and re-affirm your intentions. Wherever possible, it’s a good idea to be clear in every single circumstance, and take each opportunity to demonstrate what you want any beneficiaries to receive. However, it is not strictly necessary, and it’s not a major concern for the Will writing process.

The above summary is intended to give you some ideas about the political and legal implications of the current situation. If you would like more details, please do go contact your fund directly.

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