With the passage through Parliament of the Your Future, Your Super legislation, an employee’s superannuation account will follow them from job to job unless they make an active choice to nominate a different fund.
From 1 November 2021, new employees will be ‘stapled’ to an existing superannuation account. From that date, new arrangements will apply when onboarding new employees.
If a new employee does not choose a preferred super fund, the employer will have to check with the Australian Tax Office (ATO) whether the employee has an existing superannuation account, known as a ‘stapled super fund’, to pay the employee’s superannuation into.
If the ATO identifies a stapled superannuation account, the employer must pay contributions into that account.
If the ATO reports that the new employee does not have an existing ‘stapled’ account, the employer must create an account with, and make contributions into, the employer’s nominated default super fund.
Checklist for onboarding new employees
A new employee should be provided with a superannuation standard choice form when they start employment.
If the new employee makes a choice of superannuation fund by completing and submitting the form, the employer should make payments into that fund and keep a copy of the completed form (or ATO online printed summary) for 5 years.
If the new employee does not choose a superannuation fund, the employer needs to check with the ATO if the employee has a ‘stapled’ fund. The ATO webpage Request stapled super fund details for employees has information about preparing for the new procedure and how employers go about requesting stapled super fund details from the ATO from 1 November.
If the new employee has not nominated a superannuation fund and the ATO does not locate a stapled fund (for example, if the employee has not previously had superannuation contributions made on their behalf), the employer should pay superannuation contributions into the business’ default fund.
Does ‘stapled’ superannuation apply to current employees?
The ‘stapled’ superannuation measures do not apply to existing employees who commenced employment prior to 1 November 2021.
Where to find more information
More information is available on the ATO website.