The SMSF Association was established to help Australians who self manage their super, to educate advisors and strengthen the industry.
As an independent organisation, our goal is to educate and empower people to better understand the issues, demands and regulations needed to make the most of their self managed super funds.
As an Association, we have been instrumental in advocating for the SMSF sector and have been directly involved in:
- Previously increasing contribution caps to $35,000 and maintaining them at a higher level than otherwise might be
- Keeping limited recourse borrowing arrangements as an investment option for SMSFs
- Ensuring that SMSFs remain available as a choice to all, regardless of their stage in life or superannuation balance
- Reducing the harshness of penalties for excess contributions
- Bringing stability to superannuation laws
Our Policy Positions
Superannuation system’s objective
The SMSF Association strongly supports the Financial System Inquiry’s recommendation to set the core objectives of the superannuation system with the primary goal of the system but believes it is essential that the objective includes a notion of adequate retirement incomes. We believe the primary goal of the system should be:
“To provide income in retirement to substitute or supplement the age pension, delivering a financially secure and dignified retirement for Australians.”
Setting the goals of the system will help promote stability in superannuation which is critical to savers having confidence in the superannuation system and making long term savings decisions.
Taxation of superannuation
The SMSF Association strongly believes that the taxation of superannuation should be considered with regards to superannuation’s long-term goals of providing income in retirement and reducing reliance on the age pension. Accordingly, we believe appropriate tax concessions are needed to encourage contributions to superannuation and to compensate people for locking away their money in superannuation for long periods of time.
In addition to achieving these important goals, we believe that an equitable and sustainable superannuation system is needed so that it is accepted by both policy makers and the public in order to bring long-term stability.
The SMSF Association supports the current Government policy to improve the quality of financial advice by raising the minimum education standards for financial advisers, ensuring advisers are engaged in continuous professional development and adhering to a professional code of conduct amongst other requirements
Superannuation fund borrowing
The SMSF Association disagreed with the Financial System Inquiry’s recommendation to ban superannuation funds from using limited recourse borrowing arrangements (LRBAs) and welcomed the Government’s decision to not abolish LRBAs. We believe there is little evidence that borrowing in superannuation is causing a build up of excessive risk in superannuation.
We believe that SMSF trustees seeking to use LRBAs should seek professional advice as to whether they are right for their circumstances.
We are constantly working with Government to reduce red-tape within the superannuation system such as reducing barriers to contributing to superannuation.
We believe that SMSF auditors are the “gatekeepers” of the SMSF sector, making sure that funds are meeting their legal obligations. Accordingly, we believe it is essential to the integrity of the SMSF sector that SMSF auditors are appropriately skilled and qualified.
We believe that the Australian Taxation Office is the appropriate regulator for SMSFs and that a compliance based approach to regulating SMSFs is appropriate.