Changes to Insurance in Essential Super

From 21 February 2021, there will be changes to insurance in Essential Super. Our insurer has advised us that they be increasing the insurance premium rates. There will also be some improvements made to insurance terms and conditions, including fewer exclusions if you need to make a claim.

All Essential Super members that have insurance with us will receive a letter in the first few weeks of December 2020, detailing their new premium amount for their insurance cover, and outlining the changes to insurance terms and conditions.

Please refer to upcoming insurance premium rate changes for more information.

Coronavirus support

On 22 March 2020, the Australian Government announced superannuation changes to enable Australians financially impacted by Coronavirus to access their super. Essential Super members are able to apply via MyGov to access their super. Tell me more

Please note that the Essential Super team are experiencing higher than usual call volumes resulting in extended wait times. We kindly ask you to please refer to our FAQs before calling us. We apologise for the inconvenience and thank you for your patience. 

The financial and personal wellbeing of our customers and people remains our priority during this time. View the latest information for CommBank customers

Benefits of Essential Super

Get your super on track

Login to NetBank or the CommBank app to:

1. Keep your details up to date

  • Provide us with your Tax File Number (TFN) to avoid paying a higher rate of tax.
  • Update your personal details so we can communicate any important information.

2. Grow your balance

  • Search for your other super and consolidate into your Essential Super account.
  • Review your investment options, and change them to suit your needs.

3. New job? Take your Essential Super with you

  • Share your pre-filled form with your new employer via the CommBank app or Netbank.

Find out more

Take your super to your next job

One thing that doesn’t have to change is your super fund.

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A guide to your Super

Your financial wellbeing is our highest priority. We’ve put together some information to help you understand your super and get your retirement savings on the right track. 

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Find your super

Bring it all together

Once your account is opened, you can search in NetBank or the CommBank app for any other super you may have and view the results in real-time.

If you’d like to, you can then bring your super together4.  This can help you avoid paying multiple fees and make it easier for you to track.

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Important documents and forms

Important documents and information related to Essential Super.

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How it works

Investments that suit your age

When you join Essential Super, you will be opted into the ‘Lifestage’ investment option. We’ll do the hard work for you and automatically adjust your investment mix as you get older. This helps ensure your money is invested appropriately based on your age and how long you have until you retire.

If you’d like to, you can also choose from our three other investment options:

Each investment option is made up of a variety of individual investments, known as holdings. For example, a holding can refer to shares in a company, property, or bonds. View the specific holdings for each investment option here

Insurance is available with your account

When you open an Essential Super account, you may be automatically provided with Death and Total and Permanent Disablement (TPD) insurance cover5 (subject to meeting certain conditions). You can double, halve or cancel your insurance cover anytime in NetBank. 

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In July 2019 changes were made to insurance as a result of the Protecting Your Super legislation, aimed at helping ensure super accounts aren’t eroded by fees and insurance premiums. 

Your existing insurance cover may be cancelled on 21 April 2020 due to Putting Members' Interests First law if you have not yet elected to keep your insurance. 

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What you'll pay

Essential Super is a MySuper product with competitive fees. If your super is invested in the Essential Super ‘Lifestage’ investment option, you’ll pay: 

  • Monthly fee : $5.882
  • Combined investment and administration fee: 0.70% p.a.
  • Buy / sell spread : 0.10% per transaction
  • Estimated indirect cost ratio: 0.09 – 0.15% p.a.

Compare the costs

To help you with comparing fees and costs we have a few examples.

  • If $50,000 of your super is invested in a ‘Lifestage’ option, for that year you will be charged fees between $465.56 and $495.56 depending on the Lifestage option you’re invested in3
  • If $10,000 of your super is invested in a Lifestage option, for that year, you will be charged fees between $149.56 and $155.56 depending on the Lifestage option you’re invested in3

The fees you pay will vary depending on the amount you have invested and on your investment option.3

Find out more in our Product Disclosure Statement (PDS) and Reference Guide.


Changes to super

In 2019, two new super laws came into effect: Protecting Your Super and Putting Members’ Interests First. These aim is to ensure super accounts aren’t being eroded by fees and insurance premiums. Here’s a summary of what this means for your super – and what you need to do.

Here's what's changing

Protecting Your Super (PYS)

  1. Super funds will cancel insurance on inactive accounts.
    If you haven’t received a contribution or rollover to your super account for 16 continuous months or more, your insurance will be cancelled – unless you request to keep it. 

    Find out how to keep your insurance cover with Essential Super
  2. Inactive accounts with low balances will be transferred to the ATO. 
    If your account has been inactive for 16 months and has a balance of less than $6,000, it could be transferred to the Australian Taxation Office (ATO). The first transfer will take place in October 2019.

    How to keep your existing Essential Super account
  3. Fees on low balance accounts will be capped.
    If your super account has a balance under $6,000, fees1 will be capped at 3% and exit fees2 have been banned altogether.

Putting Members’ Interests First (PMIF)

  1. Super funds will cancel insurance on low-balance accounts.
    If you have not elected to keep your cover, and your account balance has remained below and never exceeded $6,000 between 1 November 2019 and 20 April 2020, insurance will be cancelled in these accounts on 21 April 2020.

    Elections to keep cover must be returned to us by 20 April 2020.

    How to keep your insurance cover with Essential Super
  2. Insurance cover will not be automatically provided to new members under the age of 25, or that have an account balance under $6,000.
    From 1 April 2020, super funds won’t be able to automatically provide insurance to new members if they’re under the age of 25 or if they have an account balance under $6,000.

    This will mean if you are either under 25 or have less than $6,000 and you want cover, you will need to opt-in to obtain insurance cover.

    How to opt-in to get insurance cover with Essential Super

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Essential Super for Business

Essential Super is currently unavailable for new business customers.

If you already have Essential Super for your business you can continue to add new employees and manage your arrangement through NetBank.

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Super tips

Super tips for your 20s

It's never too early to think about the lifestyle you want when you retire.

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Super tips for your 30s

You can now use your super to help save more with the Australian government’s First Home Super Saver Scheme.

Learn more

Super tips for your 40s

Superannuation isn't something you set and forget. It pays to review and adjust it as you go through life.

Learn more

Accessing your super

Find out at what age you can access your super.

Learn more

Leaving Australia?

Find out what happens to your super when you leave Australia.

Learn more

Things you should know

1 Based on the top marginal tax rate for FY19-20.

2 The amount deducted from your account will be $5 each month, as we give you the benefit of the tax deduction.

3 Additional fees may apply. And, if you leave the superannuation entity, you may be charged a buy/sell spread which also applies whenever you make a contribution, exit, rollover or investment switch. The buy/sell spread for exiting is 0.10% (this will equal $50 for every $50,000 you withdraw). Insurance costs will also apply. Refer to our PDS and Reference Guide to find out more. 

4 Before you make a decision on consolidating your super, you should compare the costs, fees, risks and benefits of your other super funds against Essential Super. It makes sense to consider whether you can replace any insurance cover you may lose upon rolling over, potential costs for withdrawing from other super funds as well as any investment or tax implications. You should also decide which super fund you want your employer to pay your future employer contributions to and complete a Super Choice form if necessary.

You need to be an Australian resident, living in Australia, aged 25 or older, but under the age of 60 with a balance of $6,000 or more, to receive Death and Total and Permanent Disability (TPD) cover automatically. Please see the PDS and Reference Guide for specific terms that apply to insurance cover in Essential Super, including what’s not covered. For example, for the first five years of your cover, a benefit won’t be paid if it is due to a pre-existing condition. Generally, a pre-existing condition is an illness or injury that you were aware of at any time in the 3 years immediately before the date your insurance cover commences, recommences or increases. The pre-existing condition exclusion won’t apply after the fifth anniversary of your cover if at any time after that anniversary you are capable of working in your usual occupation for two consecutive months. Additional exclusions apply.

Colonial First State Investments Limited ABN 98 002 348 352, AFSL 232468 (CFS) is the issuer of interests in Commonwealth Essential Super ABN 56 601 925 435 (Essential Super) and is a wholly owned subsidiary of Commonwealth Bank of Australia ABN 48 123 123 124 (Bank). This document 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 any decision regarding this product. Click here to download the PDS and Reference Guide, or call us on 13 4074 for a copy. The Bank and its subsidiaries do not guarantee the performance of Essential Super and an investment in this product is subject to risk, loss of income and capital invested. An investment in Essential Super is via a superannuation trust and is therefore not an investment in, deposit with or other liability of the Bank or its subsidiaries. Where we mention ‘we’, ‘us’ or ‘our’, we mean CFS.