Glossary

ABCDEFGHI - J - K - LMNOPQRSTU - V - W- X - Y - Z


A

Account balance investment choice

You can nominate the investment option/s into which your current account balance is invested, while opting to have different investment option/s for your future contribution investment option nomination.

Account-based pension

An account-based pension is an income stream that you can purchase with your super savings. It is a flexible and tax-effective way to receive income.

Accumulation fund

A fund in which your superannuation savings accumulate depending on the:

  • contributions that are made into your account
  • investment returns that are applied to your account
  • fees, taxes and insurance premiums (where applicable) that are deducted from your account.

Adjusted Taxable Income (ATI)

Your ATI includes:

  • Taxable income
  • Adjusted fringe benefits
  • Target foreign income
  • Total net investment loss
  • Tax free pension or benefit (eg tax exempt Centrelink pension)
  • Reportable super contributions.

Allocated pension

Allocated pensions are no longer issued by super funds, and have been replaced by account-based pensions (such as VicSuper Commutable Pension) due to Simplified Super reforms.
If you had a VicSuper Allocated Pension before 1 July 2007, your account is still considered to be an allocated pension.

Alternatives

Alternatives is one of the main asset classes. Alternatives holds investments that do not fall under any of the other asset classes and currently consists only of Australian and international private equity. Over time other sub-asset classes may be added to alternatives. Alternatives is classified as part growth and part defensive.

Annuity

A series of regular payments generally used to provide an income stream in retirement. Annuities are usually purchased with a lump sum from a life insurance company.

APRA

See Australian Prudential Regulation Authority.

Approved occupation category (in relation to insurance)

Approved occupation category refers to the occupation category you may be eligible to apply for if you have a gross annual salary (ie before tax and excluding employer superannuation guarantee (SG) contributions) of $75,000 or more and work in one of the occupations listed in the approved occupation table.

Assessable income

Your income from all sources (such as salary, wages, rent, dividends and capital gains).

Asset allocation

The distribution of an investment across various asset classes.

Asset class

A broadly defined category of financial assets. The main asset classes are:

  • Equities
  • Real assets
  • Fixed interest
  • Cash
  • Alternatives
Each of the asset classes has a different risk and return profile.

ATI

See Adjusted Taxable Income.

ATO

See Australian Taxation Office.

Average weekly ordinary time earnings (AWOTE)

A measure of wage and salary levels in Australia as determined by the Australian Bureau of Statistics.

AWOTE

See Average weekly ordinary time earnings.


B

Business day

A 'business day' is all weekdays excluding the following Melbourne public holidays:

  • New Year's Day
  • Australia Day
  • Good Friday
  • Easter Monday
  • ANZAC Day
  • Labour Day
  • Queen's Birthday
  • Melbourne Cup Day
  • Christmas Day
  • Boxing Day

Binding death benefit nomination

A binding death benefit nomination enables you to decide who will receive your death benefit (provided they are a dependant or legal personal representative). The Trustee is obligated to pay your death benefit in accordance with a valid nomination to your nominated dependants and/or legal personal representative in the proportions you have determined.

Binding nominations are subject to specific legislative conditions and witnessing formalities, and will lapse if they are not updated every three years.

Download a binding death benefit nomination form:
> VicSuper Commutable and VicSuper Non-Commutable Pension
> VicSuper Term Allocated Pension
> VicSuper FutureSaver


C

Capital gain

Profit from the increase in the dollar value of an asset.

Cash

One of the main asset classes. These are investments held in bank bills, negotiable certificates of deposit and term deposits (for periods of 12 months or less) with banks and other financial institutions. Interest earned provides returns which are generally reliable and consistent but may be lower than other asset classes.

Co-contribution

A superannuation contribution made by the Government to the account of an eligible person. If eligible, for the 2014/15 financial year the Government will make a co-contribution of $0.50 for every $1 you make as a personal contribution to your super account. The maximum co-contribution is $500 pa and eligibility depends on factors such as total annual income and the amount of personal contributions made. The full eligibility criteria is set out below.

Co-contribution eligibility criteria for 2014/15
To qualify for a co-contribution amount in relation to the 2014/15 financial year, you must meet the following criteria:

  • make a personal contribution into super by 30 June 2015
  • have a total income in 2014/15 of less than $49,488
  • earn above 10% of your gross total income as an employee, from operating a business, or both
  • lodge a 2014/15 tax return
  • not be a temporary resident of Australia at any time during the year (an exception applies for New Zealand citizens), and
  • be under age 71 at 30 June 2015.

Commutable pension

Commutable pensions are designed for people who are at preservation age or older and have retired and want to leave their money in a complying super fund so that they can draw a regular income stream rather than withdraw their money as a lump sum.

Commutation

The process of converting part or all of a pension (income stream) to a lump sum.

Complying super fund

A superannuation fund which qualifies for concessional tax rates under the Superannuation Industry (Supervision) Act 1993 (Cwlth).

Compounding returns

The investment return is calculated on the principal plus the previous earnings.

Concessional contributions

Concessional contributions are deductible contributions. They include the mandatory superannuation guarantee (SG) contributions, salary sacrifice and self-employed contributions, plus any additional employer contributions (non-SG). Concessional contributions do not qualify for the Government co-contribution. Caps apply to the amount of concessional contributions you can make into super at the concessional tax rate of 15%*. Contributions above this cap are taxed at your marginal tax rate less a tax offset equal to 15% of the excess plus an interest charge. Excess concessional contributions are counted towards the non-concessional contribution cap; however generally will be reduced by any excess you choose to release from a super fund.

* Please note that if your income exceeds $300,000 pa your contributions are generally taxed at an effective rate of 30%.

Consumer Price Index (CPI)

A measurement of the increase in the cost of living (inflation) over time.

Contribution caps

 Type of contribution

 Cap per person

 Tax treatment if cap exceeded

Concessional contributions

  • Employer superannuation guarantee (SG) contributions
  • Additional employer contributions
  • Salary sacrifice contributions
  • SG contributions paid by your employer to the ATO (formerly SG vouchers)
  • Personal tax-deductible contributions 

$30,000 pa 

However, if you're age 49 and over at 30 June 2014 the cap for 2014/15 is $35,000 pa

Contributions above this cap are taxed at your marginal tax rate less a tax offset equal to 15% of the excess plus an interest charge 

Non-concessional contributions

  • Personal (member) contributions
  • Eligible spouse contributions 

$180,000 pa

If you are under age 65 you can bring forward two years of future entitlements, equalling a cap of $540,000 over three years, which is an increase from $450,000 pa (provided you have not triggered the bring forward rule in the 2012/13 or 2013/14 financial years in which case your cap will remain $450,000 over the relevant 3 years).

Top marginal tax rate plus Medicare levy 

Rollovers, Government co-contributions and low income super contributions are not included in either cap 

No cap 

Not applicable 

These annual caps are across all superannuation funds, and contributions must be received by the fund by 30 June to count towards the caps for the financial year.

Contributions tax

A Commonwealth tax that is payable to the ATO at a rate of 15% on all contributions (excluding personal after-tax contributions and eligible spouse contributions) and untaxed rollovers.

Corporate fund

Superannuation funds operated by companies specifically for their own employees.

CPI

See Consumer Price Index.


D

Day one TPD list of conditions

If you are diagnosed by a medical practitioner as suffering one of the conditions listed below, the insurer will waive the TPD waiting period when assessing a claim made under the 'Unable to Work' definition of TPD. This means you can apply to claim your benefit immediately. The conditions are:

  • Alzheimer's disease and other dementias
  • Cardiomyopathy
  • Diplegia
  • Hemiplegia
  • Lung disease
  • Major head injury
  • Motor neurone disease
  • Multiple sclerosis
  • Muscular dystrophy
  • Paraplegia
  • Parkinson's disease
  • Permanent blindness
  • Permanent deafness
  • Permanent loss of speech
  • Primary pulmonary hypertension
  • Quadriplegia
  • Severe rheumatoid arthritis
  • Tetraplegia.

Death benefit nominations

See:

Deductible amount

A tax-free component of an allocated pension or annuity.

Deeming rules

Deeming rules are used to calculate your income when you are being assessed for any type of Centrelink income support payment. They assume that your financial assets (such as bank deposits, shares and managed funds) are earning a set rate of income, regardless of the actual income (ie interest or dividends etc) they will earn.

Default cover

Default cover is the cover eligible new VicSuper EmployeeSaver members automatically receive if you joined VicSuper through your employer. That is, six units of unit-based death and TPD cover and six units of income protection cover with a 90 day waiting period and a two year benefit period. Some conditions apply. No default cover is provided for PersonalSaver members.

Defensive assets

Defensive assets are typically lower risk and generally produce lower returns over the long term (eg bonds or cash). Defensive assets generally derive the majority of returns from income.

Defined benefit fund

A superannuation fund which calculates retirement benefits (and possibly other benefits) using a formula based on:

  • years of service with the employer (or years of membership of the fund), and
  • average salary level over the last few years prior to retirement, and
  • in some cases, your personal contribution rates.

Dependant

A dependant of a deceased person, for the purposes of payment of a death benefit is defined as:

  • a spouse of the deceased (this includes another person, whether of the same sex or a different sex, who although not legally married to the person, lives with the person on a genuine domestic basis in a relationship as a couple, or another person with whom the person is in a relationship that is registered under a law of a State or Territory)
  • any child of any age of the deceased (this includes an adopted child, stepchild, an ex-nuptial child or a surrogate child recognised by the court, or a child of the person's spouse)
  • any person who was wholly or partially financially dependent on the deceased at the time of death
  • a person with whom the deceased had an interdependency relationship at the time of death.

A different definition applies in relation to the taxation of a death benefit.

Diversification

Spreading investments across different asset types to reduce the total risk of a portfolio.

Dividend

Payment of a portion of a company's earnings to its shareholders. The amount paid is proportional to the number of shares the shareholder owns.


E

Eligible spouse contribution

After-tax superannuation contributions made by one spouse on behalf of another.

Equities

One of the main asset classes.

Equities are often called company shares or stocks. This asset class usually provides the highest average long-term returns but may also be subject to a higher risk of low or negative returns (high volatility) in the short to medium term. Equities are classified as growth assets because they primarily provide returns in the form of capital gain (or loss) as well as a dividend or income yield.


F

Fixed cover

Fixed cover allows you to elect and maintain a specific level of death or death and TPD cover. The premiums are adjusted to reflect the increased risk at various ages.

Fixed interest

One of the main asset classes. These are investments in debt securities issued by governments, semi-government agencies and corporations. Often called 'bonds', they are issued for a set amount (the principal or face value) over an agreed period at a set interest rate (the yield). Returns are made from regular coupon payments and the movement in capital value. Cash and fixed interest are considered defensive asset classes, as they are not subject to the level of volatility experienced by some other asset classes such as equities.

Fringe benefits

Benefits received by an employee from their employer in place of salary or wages (eg the use of a car for private purposes and low-interest home loans).

Future contribution investment option nomination

You can nominate the investment option/s into which your future contributions are invested, while opting to have your current balance remain in your existing investment option/s.
Deductions such as the account-keeping and administration fees, along with contributions tax and insurance premiums (if applicable) will also be withdrawn in accordance with the future contribution nomination, provided there is enough money in the option/s nominated to cover the deductions.


G

Good Health Declaration

Good Health Declaration is a short questionnaire you complete during the special insurance offer period to apply for specific levels of increased cover or when transferring from unit-based cover to fixed cover.

Gross annual salary

Gross annual salary excludes commissions, bonuses, investment and interest income and employer superannuation guarantee contributions immediately before the date you ceased work as a result of injury or illness. For members employed in a casual capacity the annual salary is calculated as the average salary earned in the previous twelve months immediately before the date you ceased work as a result of injury or illness.

Growth assets

Growth assets are typically higher in risk and therefore generally produce higher returns in the long term (eg shares). Growth assets have the potential to return a capital gain or loss (as opposed to defensive assets which are mainly only income producing).

General occupation category (in relation to insurance)

General occupation category refers to the occupation category you have if you have a gross annual salary (ie before tax and excluding employer superannuation guarantee contributions) under $75,000 or your occupation is not listed in the approved occupation table.


H

Hedging

Taking steps to protect against or reduce a risk; a form of insurance. For example, buying or selling one investment for the purpose of protecting another.


I

Income protection cover

Income protection cover provides a monthly benefit if you are unable to work due to an illness or injury that impacts on your earning capacity. It is intended to replace loss of income and payments are made on a regular basis rather than as a lump sum, for an elected period of up to two years, five years or to age 65. Income protection cover is unit-based, with each unit of cover is worth $500 per month. Premiums are calculated per unit per week and generally increase with age.

Indexation

Changing an amount (such as a pension or salary) in line with the movement of an index such as inflation as measured by the Consumer Price Index (CPI)

Indexed fund

An investment portfolio that aims to closely mirror the performance of a particular index.

Industry fund

A not for profit fund originally designed for employees with specific industries however most are now open to the public.

Inflation

The increase in the price of goods and services associated with the cost of living. Inflation is usually measured in terms of movements in the CPI.

Interdependency relationship

Two people have an interdependency relationship if:

  • they have a close personal relationship, and
  • they live together, and
  • one or each of them provides the other with financial support, and
  • one or each of them provides the other with domestic support and personal care.

Two people (whether or not related by family) also have an interdependency relationship if they have a close personal relationship, but do not satisfy points 2, 3 and 4 listed above because either or both of them suffer from a physical, intellectual or pschiatric disability.

Investment return objective

The investment return objectives and expected long term investment returns are based on modelling by Frontier Advisors Pty Ltd ("Frontier") and are subject to review.

It is important to note that this information is predictive in character, may be affected by inaccurate assumptions or by known or unknown risks and uncertainties, and may differ materially from results ultimately achieved.

Frontier, the principal asset consultant, is licensed by ASIC (AFS Licence No. 241266). It advises VicSuper on the Fund's investment objectives, strategies and investment managers. It is a 100% Australian owned company that focuses on providing investment advice to institutional investors.

Every year VicSuper reviews investment objectives and strategy and requests Frontier to review the return, risk and correlations outlook for each major asset class.

Expected return assumptions are based on:

  • the expected returns to nominal cash (the nominal risk free rate)
  • additional returns for illiquidity premium; and
  • additional returns for accepting equity (or other) risk.

Risk and correlation assumptions are based on historical data for each asset class, adjusted to reflect the asset consultant's views of the changing relationships between asset classes. Adjustments are made for the impact of tax (where applicable) on both the risk and return assumptions for each asset class.

The asset consultant uses a statistical model which combines the return, risk and correlation assumptions, together with the Fund's strategic asset allocation weights to determine expected total portfolio risk and return characteristics.
Frontier has consented to this information being included on this website.


L

Life expectancy

The average number of years that a male or female person of a particular age is expected to live in the future. Females have longer life expectancies than males.

Low income superannuation contribution

Please note that the Government has proposed to abolish the LISC but it has not yet been legislated.

Under the Government's low income superannuation contribution (LISC) scheme, if your adjusted taxable income (ATI) does not exceed $37,000, you will save on the 15% tax paid on concessional contributions made from 1 July 2012. If eligible, you will receive a deposit in your super account up to $500 from 2013/14. Other eligibility requirements:

  • You are not the holder of a temporary resident visa (New Zealand citizens in Australia are generally eligible as they do not hold visas)
  • 10% of more of your total gross income is derived from business or employment
  • The LISC payable is $20 or more

If you do not lodge a tax return (eg if your income is under the tax free threshold), the Commissioner will determine your eligibility based on information available to the ATO. 

Listed equities

These are equities (or shares) in a public company listed on stock exchanges in Australia and around the world in developed and emerging markets, which can be bought and sold by the public. Returns are made when the market price increases and dividends are paid. On the other hand, investment losses are made when the market price of these shares decreases.

Lost member

VicSuper is required to report all lost members to the ATO twice a year for the six-month periods ending 30 June and 31 December. Lost member details are recorded on the ATO’s Lost Members Register, which is a central register of lost superannuation fund members and is designed to help people track down their lost superannuation.

Lump sum

A superannuation benefit that is taken as a single payment rather than as a pension or annuity.


M

Maximum benefit limit

The maximum amount of death and TPD insurance benefits you can apply for are as follows:

Death: unlimited*

TPD: up to $5 million* (however, under the 'unable to work' definition of TPD the maximum benefit is $3.09 million).

Income protection cover: up to the lesser of 75% of gross annual salary (ie before tax and excluding employer Superannuation Guarantee contributions) plus 10% superannuation contributions or $30,000 per month.

* For unit-based cover, the maximum number of units allowed is 60. If cover in excess of 60 units is required then it must be taken as fixed cover.

Marginal tax rates (MTR)

Also referred to as tax brackets. Tax rates increase on a graduated scale. Income is taxed at the rate applicable to each band. Please note that the top marginal tax rate is affected by the temporary budget repair levy between 1 July 2014 and 30 June 2017.


N

Non-binding death benefit nomination

In the event of death, a non-binding death benefit nomination will be used as a guide by VicSuper (when it exercises its absolute discretion under the Trust Deed) to allocate the balance of an account between the member's dependants and/or their estate.

Note: If you were a member of VicSuper Beneficiary Account at 30 June 2002, your death benefit is payable to your legal personal representative (estate) unless:

  • you irrevocably elect for it to be paid at VicSuper's discretion to your dependants and/or your legal personal representative, or
  • you make a binding death benefit nomination.

Download make a non-binding death benefit nomination form:
> VicSuper Commutable and Non-Commutable Pension
> VicSuper Term Allocated Pension
> VicSuper FutureSaver

Non-commutable pension

A non-commutable pension has similar features and benefits as a commutable pension, except a non-commutable pension can be commenced with preserved and restricted non-preserved super benefits (as well as unrestricted non-preserved super benefits) and access to your super savings is restricted. You must also choose an annual income payment amount between minimum and maximum limits as set by Federal legislation.
You do not have to retire from the workforce to start a non-commutable pension.

Non-concessional contributions

Non-concessional contributions are contributions that are not taxed on entry to a superannuation fund and also include the contribution excess of your concessional contribution cap to the extent you did not choose to release the excess from a super fund. They include personal contributions, after tax and eligible spouse contributions. Caps apply to the amount of non-concessional contributions you can make into super which are not taxed. Amounts in excess of the caps are taxed at the highest marginal tax rate plus Medicare levy.


O

Own approved occupation for income protection 

An own approved occupation premium rate is only available for income protection cover. This means your ongoing entitlement to a monthly income protection benefit will be determined by your capacity to undertake your own occupation in the event of total or partial disability. To be eligible, you must satisfy the criteria of an 'approved occupation'. Own occupation is only available where the benefit period is 5 years or to age 65. 

Own approved occupation for TPD

Own approved occupation TPD cover is no longer be offered to members, however existing members with own approved occupation cover at 30 June 2014 can retain their cover.


P

Participating employer

An employer who has an agreement with VicSuper to make their compulsory superannuation guarantee (SG) contributions on behalf of their staff to VicSuper.

Pay As You Go (PAYG) tax

Amount of tax withheld from gross payments (eg lump sums and pensions). These amounts are then remitted to the ATO.

PAYG

See Pay As You Go (PAYG) tax

Pension payments

Pension payments for VicSuper Pensions can be made annually, half-yearly, quarterly, monthly or twice monthly. You can choose to receive pension payments on either the 15th day and/or the last business day of each month. 

Personal contributions

These are after-tax superannuation contributions you can choose to make and are counted towards your non-concessional contributions cap. Personal contributions can be made through your employer or direct to your super fund.
You may also be able to make personal deductible contributions that you can claim a tax deduction for. These are counted towards the concessional contribution cap.

Preservation age

The age at which you can generally access your superannuation, provided you have permanently retired from the workforce. Your preservation age depends on your date of birth.

Date of birth

Preservation age

Before 1 July 1960

55

1 July 1960 to 30 June 1961

56

1 July 1961 to 30 June 1962

57

1 July 1962 to 30 June 1963

58

1 July 1963 to 30 June 1964

59

After 1 July 1964

60

Preserved benefits

Benefits that must remain in a super fund until a condition of release has been met.

Private equity

These are equities that are not listed on stock exchanges in Australia and around the world. Returns are made when a company is listed on a stock exchange or sold to another company or through the distribution of dividends.

Property trust

Property trusts are collective investment vehicles (unit trusts) that own portfolios of real estate. Investors in unit trusts are called 'unitholders'. Income from the investments of the trust (in the form of rental income) is mostly distributed to the unitholders. These are called distributions. Returns on listed property trust investments are determined by changes in the market price of units, and distributions received.

Public offer fund

These funds offer superannuation to individuals or employers on a not-for-profit or commercial basis.

Public sector fund

These funds are only available to government employees.


Q

Quarter

In financial terms, a quarter is generally defined as a period of three months beginning on:

  • 1 January
  • 1 April
  • 1 July, or
  • 1 October

R

Real assets

One of the main asset classes. These are investments in property, infrastructure, agriculture and timber. In line with industry, VicSuper has defined the 'real assets' asset class as exhibiting the attributes of both growth and defensive assets.

Reportable superannuation contributions

Reportable superannuation contributions include personal contributions for which a tax deduction is claimed (ie personal deductible contributions including self-employed contributions) and reportable employer superannuation contributions (RESC).

Reportable employer superannuation contributions (RESC)

In most cases this is just your voluntary salary sacrifice contributions, however, it may also include amounts in excess of the Superannuation Guarantee (SG) contributions made by your employer. RESC are one component of reportable superannuation contributions.

Regulated superannuation fund

A regulated superannuation fund is one which:

  • is a superannuation, pension, provident or benefit fund for which there are no foreseeable plans to close the fund
  • has a corporate trustee or pays retirement benefits as pensions
  • the trustee elects to comply with the Superannuation Industry (Supervision) Act 1993 (Cwlth).

Reportable fringe benefits

If an employee receives certain fringe benefits to a total taxable value of more than $1000 in a Fringe Benefits Tax year (1 April to 31 March), their employer must record the grossed-up taxable value of those benefits on the employee's PAYG Payment Summary. These are known as reportable fringe benefits.

Restricted non-preserved benefits

Benefits which are not preserved but cannot be cashed until a condition of release has been met, such as termination of employment.

Retirement Savings Account (RSA)

A superannuation product provided by banks, building societies, credit unions, life insurance companies or prescribed financial institutions.

Return

Refers to how much you earn on your investment.

Reversionary beneficiary

Applicable to VicSuper Pension members only. A reversionary beneficiary will automatically receive a member's pension after they die. Once selected, the reversionary beneficiary cannot be changed except in limited circumstances (such as the death of the reversionary beneficiary or divorce). A reversionary beneficiary can be the spouse, de facto partner, child (under age 18), a person financially dependent on a member or a person with whom the member had an interdependency relationship at the time of death.

Please note, a reversionary beneficiary cannot be a child over age 18 unless financially dependant and then, once the child turns 25, any reversionary pension must be commuted (cashed) as a tax-free lump sum. If the child is permanently disabled, there is no requirement to commute the reversionary pension.

VicSuper Commutable Pension and VicSuper Non-Commutable Pension

In the event of the member's death, the reversionary beneficiary can choose to receive the pension as income payments or convert the balance to a lump sum.

VicSuper Term Allocated Pension (including VicSuper Transition to Retirement Term Allocated Pension)

In the event of the member's death, the pension must continue to be paid to the reversionary beneficiary for the remaining term of the pension. The pension generally cannot be converted to a lump sum. VicSuper Term Allocation Pension is not available to new members.

Risk

Refers to the variability or fluctuation (basically the short-term rise and fall) of returns.

Rollover

The process of transferring your superannuation from:

  • one superannuation fund to another, or
  • one superannuation account to another (eg from VicSuper Beneficiary Account to VicSuper Allocated Pension).

RSA

See Retirement Savings Account.


S

Salary sacrifice contribution

Contributions made from your salary before you pay income tax. Salary sacrifice contributions are paid by the employer and can include regular salary, bonuses and allowances. Please note, salary sacrifice contributions are taxed at 15% and count towards the concessional contributions cap.

Note: An agreement must be in place between the employer and the employee before the employee becomes entitled to the amount to be sacrificed.

Self-employed

A person who receives less than 10% of their assessable income from an employer may claim a tax deduction for their contribution to super.

Social security

Government income support payments administered by Centrelink. Both assets and income are means tested to determine eligibility.

Special insurance offer period

The special insurance offer period is a period of time in which members who joined VicSuper through their employer can elect to increase cover (within limits) with minimal health evidence; or the time during which cover can be cancelled and have associated premiums deducted refunded to your account. The special insurance offer period ends 60 days after the date of VicSuper's welcome letter confirming your default insurance details. For members who joined VicSuper as an individual, no special insurance offer period applies.

Spouse (for eligible spouse contribution purposes)

A spouse is defined as a person who is:

  • your legal spouse from whom you have not permanently separated, or
  • a de facto partner living with you on a bona fide domestic basis as your husband or wife (including a same sex partner).

Spouse contributions

Contributions can be made to superannuation on behalf of a spouse. A tax offset is available for contributions made for a spouse with assessable income and reportable fringe benefits of less than $13,800 pa.
The offset is calculated as 18% of contributions up to $3,000 (maximum offset 18% x $3,000 = $540) for a spouse earning less than $10,800 pa. The $3,000 contribution limit reduces by one dollar for each dollar of income above $10,800, until the offset phases out at $13,800 pa.

Standard Risk Measure

The Standard Risk Measure is based on industry guidance to allow members to compare investment options that are expected to deliver a similar number of negative annual returns over any 20 year period. The Standard Risk Measure is not a complete assessment of all forms of investment risk, for instance it does not detail what the size of a negative return could be or the potential for a positive return to be less than a member may require to meet their objectives. Further, it does not take into account the impact of administration fees and tax on the likelihood of a negative return.

VicSuper assesses the Standard Risk Measure for each of its investment options based on the option's strategic asset allocation. Members should still ensure they are comfortable with the risks and potential losses associated with their chosen investment option/s.

Superannuation guarantee (SG) contributions

Compulsory contributions your employer is required to make on your behalf (under Commonwealth legislation) for each month in which you are paid $450 or more. Your employer is not obliged to pay SG on any amount you earn above $49,430 in each quarter for the 2014/15 financial year. The current SG rate is 9.5% of an employee's salary (before tax) and your employer is required to pay SG contributions at least quarterly based on the following dates:

Quarter

Due Date

1 July - 30 September

28 October

1 October - 31 December

28 January

1 January - 31 March

28 April

1 April - 30 June

28 July

If the cut-off date for payment falls on a weekend or public holiday, the ATO grants a concession to the make the payment by the next business day.

Sustainability

Broadly, sustainability is about meeting the needs of the present without compromising the ability of future generations to meet their needs. It involves integrating social, environment and economic considerations into the decision-making process to achieve quality of life for both current and future generations worldwide.


T

Tax components

Your super consists of two components:

Tax-free component

Taxable component

  • non-concessional contributions
  • crystalised component (determined at 30 June 2007).
  • total super benefit less the tax-free component (as listed on the left).

Tax on investment returns

The tax rate on the investment return varies between investment options (up to a maximum of 15%) and is calculated based on the tax attributes of the investment return (eg franking credits). Where applicable, it is factored into the calculation of unit prices and the maturity value of term deposits. The net investment return figures shown on benefit statements represent the investment earnings net of tax.

There is no tax on investment returns for VicSuper Pensions.

Term allocated pension

A term allocated pension (TAP) is a regular income stream you receive from your super savings over a fixed term (in years). Lump sum withdrawals are generally not permitted, however, a term allocated pension receives favourable Centrelink treatment. TAPs are no longer issued from 20 September 2007.

Total and permanent disablement (TPD)

TPD (total and permanent disablement) cover provides you with a lump-sum benefit where you are unable to work for health reasons and medical evidence indicates it is unlikely that you'll ever be able to work again. TPD also means you suffer a permanent disablement and suffer a specific loss or are unable to perform certain activities of daily living.

Transition to retirement term allocated pension

A transition to retirement term allocated pension has similar features and benefits as a term allocated pension (such as Centrelink benefits), however, a transition to retirement term allocated pension can be commenced with preserved and restricted non-preserved super benefits (as well as unrestricted non-preserved super benefits). You also don't have to retire from the workforce to start a transition to retirement term allocated pension. Transition to retirement term allocated pensions are no longer issued from 20 September 2007.

You are generally unable to make lump sum withdrawals from a transition to retirement term allocated pension.

Trust Deed

The legal document that governs the rights and entitlements of members of a superannuation fund.

Trustee

An individual or company appointed under the terms of a trust deed to hold assets for the beneficiaries of the trust. The trustee of a superannuation fund holds the assets of the fund on behalf of the members and beneficiaries.


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Unclaimed monies

Money in a member's superannuation account is defined as unclaimed when:

  • the member reaches age 65 and
  • the fund has not received a contribution or rollover from the member for at least two years, and
  • it has been five years since the super fund last had contact with the member and the provider has been unable to contact the member after making reasonable efforts.

It also includes accounts for former temporary residents, accounts for unidentifiable members and accounts under $2,000 that relate to lost members. Unclaimed monies are transferred to the ATO.

Unit-based death or death and TPD cover

Unit-based death or death and TPD cover provides a specific level of cover for each unit, based on your age. The premium per unit is a set rate regardless of age, and the level of cover per unit reduces as you get older. A death or TPD benefit is paid as a lump sum.

Unit trusts

Unit trusts are trust funds that own company shares. Units trusts may be listed on stock exchanges or they may be unlisted. Unit trusts operate under a trust deed and the investment strategy is developed and managed by a fund manager.

Unrestricted non-preserved benefits

Benefits for which a condition of release has already been met. These may be accessed at any time, subject to the superannuation fund's rules.