Have you left Australia and want to get your superannuation payments back?
This is something we get asked frequently by many of our clients so have outlined some of the fundamentals below for you.
You will be eligible to claim your super back if you have held a temporary visa (for example a Working Holiday Visa, a Subclass 482 TSS visa, a Student Visa), where you had work rights and where your employer made the contribution on your behalf to an approved superannuation fund.
Your temporary visa must have expired before you can claim your superannuation money. In the past, we have had clients requesting that their temporary visa be cancelled to allow them to claim the superannuation money earlier.
If you held a permanent residence visa after your temporary visa, you may only apply for the superannuation refund after the expiry of the permanent residence visa (permanent residence visas are valid for five years from the date of grant). It is not sufficient to simply have left Australia if you have held a permanent residence visa. Keep in mind that it is quite difficult to request that the Department of Home Affairs cancel your PR as there are a few grounds for cancellation of this visa type.
If you have only ever held a permanent residence visa and were never a temporary resident in Australia, you are unable to claim back any superannuation payments.
Claiming Your Money
If you meet the criteria for a refund, you can claim your superannuation refund under the DASP (Departing Australia Superannuation Payment).
If you don’t reclaim your super after six months after you depart Australia, the super fund will transfer to the Australian Tax Office (ATO) who will hold it for you until you claim it.
To make a claim, you will need your Australian tax file number, the details of your employer and the evidence of your superannuation contributions and fund number.
Tax on Your Superannuation Money
If you ever held a Working Holiday Visa – Subclass 417 (or a Work and Holiday Visa – Subclass 462) in Australia, the tax on your superannuation refund is an eye watering 65% of the amount of superannuation that was paid during the time that you held the visa.
The DASP system will obtain visa information from the DHA which will allow the superannuation fund and the ATO to determine the correct DASP tax rate.
It is important to note as well that any bridging visa that was held after your first Working Holiday Visa, (immediately before a second Subclass 417 or 462 visa was/is granted) is also considered to be of time counted towards the higher tax rate of 65%. If you held a bridging visa after holding a Subclass 417 or 462 visa, and no other visa was issued to you subsequently, that time will be taxed at the higher rate of 65% as well.
For nonworking holidaymakers, the tax rates are 35% for superannuation funds paid as a result of the taxable element of your salary at the time, and 45% for the untaxed component of your salary at that time.
Find out more
To find out more about claiming back your superannuation payments please have a look at the DASP information on the ATO website which you will find here.