The spread of the COVID-19 virus is creating challenging times for everyone. Our experienced team is actively monitoring and responding to events as they continue to unfold.
Right now, our greatest priority is the health and safety of our VicSuper community – that’s you, as well as our VicSuper team who are continuing to work hard throughout the current situation to provide you with services and support.
Financial support during Coronavirus crisis
The Government has made temporary changes to super to help support the community during the Coronavirus crisis. These include:
To help you better understand the financial support you may be able to access during this time, we’ve compiled some existing initiatives in a factsheet.
If you currently have insurance with VicSuper FutureSaver and are applying for early access to your super, please consider the impact of this withdrawal on your insurance cover. If you wish to continue your cover, you must have sufficient funds in your account to pay your monthly insurance premiums. Your cover may cease if the early withdrawal leaves insufficient funds in your account to pay premiums.
We encourage you to read the 'Your insurance' section below to understand the impact of COVID-19 on cover held with VicSuper.
Keeping your details safe
As always, we encourage you to keep your banking and financial details confidential.
- Use only trusted and secure websites such as our password protected MembersOnline portal.
- When contacting us by phone, use our approved, dedicated 1300-phone line for members (just keep in mind that we are currently experiencing long wait times).
Withdrawals, claims and payments
We’re continuing to process income payments as usual. Our team is also continuing to process insurance claims, contributions and lump sum payments.
However, because some of our working arrangements have changed, there may be times where processing may take a little longer than normal.
A key source of concern for many of you will be the volatility that we’ve been seeing in investment markets. Our experienced investment team has operated through long periods of market fluctuation and investment volatility in the past, and is actively monitoring and responding to events as they unfold.
We’re keeping the website updated with information that may help to answer any questions you have in regard to your investments and current market conditions.
We can confirm our insurance policies cover pandemics. This means if your insurance claim is in relation to COVID-19, it will be assessed as per the usual terms and conditions of our insurance policies.
Note: Income protection cover provides you with a replacement income if you’re unable to work due to illness or injury for a period of time. It does not cover unemployment.
Frequently asked questions
Do VicSuper insurance policies have any exclusions in relation to COVID-19?
We can confirm our insurance policies do not have an exclusion for pandemics. This means if your insurance claim is in relation to an illness or injury related to COVID-19, it will be assessed as per the usual terms and conditions of our insurance policies.
Can I apply for additional cover, if I am planning to travel overseas?
If you are currently applying for underwritten cover and you inform us that you are planning to travel overseas, you will have a travel exclusion applied. The exclusion that is applied means no benefits will be paid for any claim directly or indirectly related to travel to or from or travelling in or residing in, any country which is on a travel ‘advice level 3 or 4’* issued by the Australian Government. If the exclusion applies to you, you will be informed of this when you are offered the final terms of the underwritten cover.
This travel exclusion is our current standard approach when a member says they are travelling to an advice level 3 or 4 country. As the whole world is currently on advice level 4, any nomination of overseas travel will have the exclusion added. However, as time progresses and the COVID-19 pandemic is brought under control, the Australian Government will revise their advice level on specific countries and the individual exclusions will no longer apply to those countries.
Due to “compassionate” reasons, I need to travel to a country, which is currently on an advice level 3 and 4, will I be covered?
If you are currently an insured member and traveling internationally to a country, which is currently on an advice level 3 and 4, you will maintain your cover.
You’ll be able to travel overseas without your insurance cover being affected. As long as you have an adequate balance to cover premiums, your cover will continue to remain active, subject to you meeting all other eligibility criteria to retain cover.
I am currently overseas, can I apply for insurance cover?
If you are currently overseas and apply for new cover or to increase your existing cover where underwriting is required, we will be unable to accept your request. This is because the current situation in each country with respect to COVID 19 is complex and rapidly changing and we are not able to appropriately assess your risks both now and in the near future.
If you are currently overseas and apply to change or increase your existing cover via the New Member Offer or Life Events, your request will be processed as usual and you will receive the requested cover if you meet the standard eligibility requirements for those offers. This is because the terms for insurance changes under those offers are determined under the policy terms.
Can I apply for underwritten cover after being diagnosed with COVID-19?
Yes, you may apply for underwritten cover. MetLife, our Insurer, will defer the underwriting decision for at least three months until you have received a clean bill of health from your doctor confirming you are illness and symptom free, and have no ongoing respiratory complications.
If I have recently visited a country or region that is considered a COVID-19 risk, can I apply for underwritten cover?
Yes, you may apply for underwritten cover. MetLife, our Insurer, will defer the underwriting decision until you have received a clean bill of health from your doctor confirming you are illness and symptom free, after a minimum 14-day period of self-isolation.
Will I be still be eligible to receive additional cover with minimal underwriting above the default insurance amount?
Yes. Where additional cover is currently provided with minimal underwriting, for example New Member Offers, Life Events or Individual Insurance Transfers, they will still be available, subject to the terms and conditions of the policy. Refer to the Insurance Handbook for details and other terms and conditions.
If I contract COVID-19, will I be eligible to apply for a TPD Claim?
The current information available suggests most individuals who contract COVID-19 recover within 14 days and return to their normal activities. The long-term health impacts or complications of COVID-19 remain unclear. If you are insured with VicSuper and have long-term permanent health complications resulting from COVID-19, then you may be eligible to be paid a benefit under the TPD policy.
If I contract COVID-19, will I be eligible to apply for an Income Protection (IP) claim?
In many circumstances, COVID-19 runs its normal course in approximately 14 days. Generally, if you are illness and symptom free after 14 days, then you will not meet the Waiting Period requirements under the insurance policy, and a benefit would not be paid. If the virus persists past the nominated Waiting Period and you are unable to work at full capacity due to COVID-19, then you may be eligible to be paid a benefit under the IP policy.
I am in self-isolation without a positive diagnosis for COVID-19 and am unable to work, will I be eligible to claim for Income Protection (IP) cover?
No, you are only eligible to be paid a benefit for IP cover if you can’t work solely due to illness or injury and satisfy the nominated Waiting Period.
I lost my job due to the economic impacts of COVID-19, will I be eligible to claim for Income Protection (IP) cover?
No, you will be only eligible to be paid a benefit for IP cover if you can’t work solely due to illness or injury and satisfy the nominated Waiting Period.
I have been stood down from my employment, or I am unemployed, am I eligible for IP benefits?
You will not be entitled to receive a disablement benefit if at the date of disablement you’re unemployed. However, if in a period where you are not working you have a formalised agreement to commence employment on a future date, you may be considered employed and eligible to make a claim.
To be eligible to claim you must meet the IP claim requirements and have an inability to work due to illness or injury, any member stood down under the Fair Work Act will be considered by our Insurer to be on leave without pay. Generally, for insured members on leave without pay, any benefits would commence at the end of that leave without pay period. Our Insurer will disregard this standard condition and will commence benefits at the end of the relevant waiting period. Any minimum work hour requirements will still apply, based on the period prior to any stand down. Any benefits payable will generally be based on average income for the previous 12 months prior to the date of disablement.
I have had reduced working hours or lost my job due to COVID-19, am I eligible for TPD benefits?
If you had reduced working hours or lost your job due to COVID-19, your TPD cover will not be affected if you:
- Were working in your normal capacity on 11 March 2020*,
- Have had reduced working hours or lost your job due to COVID-19 since 11 March 2020,
- Become disabled as a result of an illness or injury between 11 March 2020 and 28 March 2021 inclusive,
- Have maintained your TPD cover at the time you become totally and permanently disabled, and;
- Lodge your completed claim form on or before 30 June 2021.
Your claim will be assessed using the applicable disability definition based on your working arrangements as at 11 March 2020.
Refer to our Insurance Handbook for definitions and further details.*When the World Health Organisation declared coronavirus to be a global pandemic.
The insurance cover offered as part of your VicSuper FutureSaver membership is provided under policies issued and underwritten by MetLife Insurance Limited ABN 75 004 274 882 AFSL 238096 (the Insurer). All insurance cover is subject to the terms and conditions of those policies, which may be amended from time to time. All descriptions of the insurance cover offered are current as at 1 April 2020.
VicSuper continues to operate as normally as possible
In accordance with the advice of the World Health Organisation and Australia’s Chief Medical Officer, we have implemented some changes to the way we operate. These changes remain in effect for the foreseeable future (and until we know more) but be assured that we continue to do all that we can to provide the services that you need.
All of our teams remain fully operational, including our Member Services team. However, telephone wait times for the contact centre in particular are likely to be a little longer, not just due to the increase in call volumes, but also because we now have many staff working from home offices.
We are currently experiencing exceptionally high call volumes and we apologise for the long wait times. We’d like to thank you for your patience and understanding in these challenging times.
Our Melbourne office is temporarily closed to the public with the majority of our employees working remotely.
We will continue to monitor our mail. Therefore, if you need to drop off any documentation, post it to the relevant office address.
Our advice centres are temporarily closed but we continue to honour all existing (and new) advice appointments.
Instead of meeting our members face-to-face, all appointments will be conducted over the phone.
Like every super fund at the moment, we’re experiencing increased call volumes. Rest assured our teams are working hard to provide the level of service that you’ve come to expect from us.
If you can't reach us, try again later or submit an online enquiry.
We're here to help. We are currently experiencing exceptionally high call volumes and we apologise for the long wait times. We’d like to thank you for your patience and understanding in these challenging times.