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Superannuation generally can’t be withdrawn until you reach the preservation age, that is between 55 and 60 depending on your date of birth.
|Date of Birth||Preservation Age (Years)|
|Before 1 July 1960||55|
|1 July 1960 – 30 June 1961||56|
|1 July 1961 – 30 June 1962||57|
|1 July 1962 – 30 June 1963||58|
|1 July 1963 – 30 June 1964||59|
|After 30 June 1964||60|
Preserved benefits are all contributions made by or on behalf of a member, all earnings post 30 June 1999, and employer eligible termination payments (ETP’s) rolled into a super fund post 30 June 2004.
Restricted non-preserved benefits can be employment related contributions (other than employer contributions) made pre 1 July 1999 or ETP’s rolled into a super fund pre 1 July 2004.
Unrestricted non-preserved benefits can be those which are already eligible for release but have remained in the fund.
Preserved benefits must be preserved in the fund until a condition of release is met. Restricted non-preserved benefits can be cashed only if the condition of release is met specific to that benefit itself.
Unrestricted non-preserved benefits don’t need to meet a condition of release and may be paid upon demand by the member.
The following are some of the conditions of release for accessing your superannuation balance:
If you retire and reach preservation age, you may access your preserved benefits.
Transition to Retirement
If you are under 65 and have reached preservation age, but don’t retire, you may access your benefits as a non-commutable income stream (non-lump sum). You may remain gainfully employed on a full-time or part-time basis.
Reaching Age 65
Once you reach age 65 you may cash your benefits at any time.
The following are some of the circumstances that may allow for early access to your superannuation balance:
Preserved Amount Less Than $200
If the balance of the preserved benefits in your super account is less than $200 you may be able to withdraw tax-free at any age.
Severe Financial Hardship
If you are in severe financial hardship you may be eligible for a lump sum payment or part of your superannuation, subject to conditions such as:
– You have been on an eligible Commonwealth Government income support payment for a continuous period of 26 weeks
– You are unable to meet reasonable and immediate family living expenses
– You have been on an eligible Commonwealth Government income support payment for a cumulative period of 39 weeks after you reach preservation age
Superannuation may be withdrawn on compassionate grounds, such as if you are required to:
– Pay for medical treatment for you or your dependants
– Pay for expenses associated with a death or funeral
Other circumstances which allow for early release of superannuation include terminal medical conditions, temporary incapacity, permanent incapacity or being a temporary resident leaving Australia permanently.
Luke Talbot-Male, Adventures Beyond
Phillip Cross, Royce Cross Agencies