Making additional contributions 

  • Recontribute amounts accessed through the COVID-19 Early Release of Super Scheme: The government has passed legislation to allow individuals who received a payment under the COVID-19 Early Release of Super Scheme to re-contribute, as non-concessional contributions, up to the same amount they received under the COVID-19 Early Release of Super Scheme without these contributions counting towards their non-concessional cap. These contributions must not exceed the total amount of super accessed under the COVID-19 early release, can be made between 1 July 2021 and 30 June 2030 and cannot be claimed as a personal super tax deduction. Read more at the ATO website.
  • Top up your super: Grow your super with personal contributions, either as a concessional (before-tax) or non-concessional (after-tax) contribution (contribution caps apply).  For example, if you receive a tax refund, proceeds from a sale, or a redundancy payout, you could put some or all of this money into your super. One great benefit of making a non-concessional contribution is that the government may also co-contribute up to $500 (subject to eligibility).  
  • Spouse contributions: If your partner would like to help rebuild your super, they can put money into your super for you. They may be eligible for a tax offset of up to $5401 if they make contributions for you and you are a low income earner or not working.

Keep in mind that there are limits on how much you can contribute each year, these are available at the ATO website.

How to make an additional contribution? 

You can transfer money from a CommBank account directly into your Essential Super through the CommBank app or NetBank. Use reference code ‘MV’ in the description field so we know you’re making a personal contribution. Learn more about other transfer options.

Consider salary sacrificing

If you’re working, check whether your employer supports salary sacrificing arrangements. Salary sacrificing is when your employer pays part of your before-tax income straight into your super account, on top of the 10% super guarantee contributions that they already make for you.

Putting in a little extra each week can make a difference over the long term whilst saving you some tax. For example, by salary sacrificing $76 per fortnight of your before-tax income, a 30 year old on a salary of $80,000 pays $685 less tax and will have contributed an extra $1,687 to their super.  

What are the tax advantages? 

There are tax advantages to salary sacrificing, as the examples in the table above illustrate. The extra amounts contributed to your super are taxed at 15%, as opposed to your take home salary which may be taxed at up to 47% if you are a mid to high income earner. Salary sacrifice may reduce your taxable income, which may mean less tax withheld from your take home pay. An additional 15% tax will be paid on super contributions by individuals whose combined income and contributions are greater than $250,000. For details, refer to the MoneySmart website. You may want to consider getting financial advice to decide if salary sacrifice is right for you.

Speak to your payroll or HR team at work to find out how to set up a salary sacrifice arrangement.

Check your Investment strategy

How your super is invested may make a difference to how long it takes your balance to recover. Typically, growth assets like property and shares have higher returns than defensive assets like cash and fixed interest but they also carry more risk. Most investment options in super funds have a mix of both growth and defensive assets.

If, like over 90% of Essential Super members, you are invested in the Lifestage investment option, your investment mix automatically changes to suit the risk profile of your different life stages as you get older. To check your investment strategy, go to NetBank > Essential Super > Investment. You can then consider if it’s appropriate for you. You can also change your Investment Strategy by calling us on 13 4047.

Before making any major decisions around your investment options, it’s a good idea to seek a financial adviser to understand the risks associated with your current investment strategy and any changes you may like to make.  

FAQs

What other government contributions may I be eligible for, with regards to my super?

You may be eligible for the low income super tax offset (LISTO) if you are a low income earner. LISTO is a government contribution of up to $500 per year to help reduce the tax paid on contributions, which helps you save more for retirement. If you earned less than $37,000 and received concessional contributions during the year, this payment into your super will happen automatically when you lodge your tax return, providing your super fund has a copy of your tax file number. If you’re an Essential Super member and are eligible, check that you have provided your TFN by logging into CommBank app or NetBank > Settings > Tax file number.

Additionally, if you are a low or middle-income earner and make a non-concessional (after-tax) super contribution, the government may also make a contribution to your super of 50 cents for every dollar you contribute, up to $500 (called a co-contribution). You don’t need to apply for the super co-contribution, it is automatically paid into your super account if you’re eligible and submit a tax return. Learn more.

How much of an impact did withdrawing my super early have on my balance?

You can use Moneysmart's super withdrawal estimator to see what impact the withdrawal may have on your retirement balance, so you can determine how much you may need to contribute to get back on track. 

I am still in financial difficulty after withdrawing from my super. What are my options? 

We’re here to support you during these challenging times. Visit our Coronavirus support page to find out more about the financial support available.

I’m in Australia temporarily. What does this mean for me?  

Eligible temporary residents were able to access $10,000 of their super prior to 30 June 2020 as part of the coronavirus support measures. If you’re a temporary resident, generally, the next time you will be able to access your super will be when you leave Australia. Learn more.

Things you should know

1 The ATO defines a spouse as another person (of any sex) who:

  • You’re in a relationship with, registered under a state or territory law; or
  • Although not legally married to you, lives with you on a genuine domestic basis in a relationship as a couple.

If you’re in a relationship and have made contributions under the threshold to your spouse’s super fund or retirement savings account (RSA) during the financial year, you may be entitled for a spouse contribution tax offset if your spouse was under 75 at the time the contribution was made.

Your spouse must be under 75 years old to receive a spouse contribution. Your spouse’s income must also be less than $40,000. Refer to the ATO link for more details. Learn more.

Important Information: Colonial First State Investments Limited ABN 98 002 348 352, AFSL 232468 (CFSIL) is the issuer of interests in Commonwealth Essential Super ABN 56 601 925 435 (Essential Super) and is a wholly owned but non-guaranteed subsidiary of Commonwealth Bank of Australia ABN 48 123 123 124 (Commonwealth Bank). This document is issued by CFSIL and may include general financial product advice but does not consider your individual objectives, financial circumstances or needs. You should read the Product Disclosure Statement (PDS) and the Reference Guide for Essential Super carefully and consider whether the information is appropriate for you before making an investment decision. Download the PDS and Reference Guide at commbank.com.au/essentialsuper-documents or call us on 13 4074 for a copy. The Target Market Determinations (TMD) for our financial products can be found at www.cfs.com.au/tmd and include a description of who the financial product is appropriate for, and any conditions on how products can be distributed to customers. The Commonwealth Bank provides certain distribution and administrative services to CFSIL. The Commonwealth Bank and its subsidiaries do not guarantee the performance of Essential Super or the repayment of capital by Essential Super. An investment in Essential Super is via a superannuation trust and is therefore not an investment in, deposit with, or other liability of the Commonwealth Bank or its subsidiaries and is subject to investment risk, including loss of income and capital invested. Where we mention `we’, `us’ or `our’, we mean CFSIL.

Taxation considerations are general and based on present taxation laws and may be subject to change. You should seek independent, professional tax advice before making any decision based on this information. Colonial First State Investments Limited is also not a registered tax (financial) adviser under the Tax Agent Services Act 2009, and you should seek tax advice from a registered tax agent or a registered tax (financial) adviser if you intend to rely on this information to satisfy the liabilities or obligations or claim entitlements that arise, or could arise, under a taxation law.