The SMSF Association has welcomed the introduction to Parliament of the federal government’s superannuation legislation, which contains improved transition measures.
On 9 November, Treasurer Scott Morrison presented the three superannuation-related bills to Parliament – the Superannuation (Objective) Bill, Fair and Sustainable Superannuation Bill and Excess Transfer Balance Tax Bill.
SMSF Association chief executive Andrea Slattery said it was heartening the government had made a number of important technical adjustments to the legislation to reduce its complexity.
“Our association advocated that there were a number of technical issues with the government’s draft legislation and we are pleased that the government has listened to the concerns of the SMSF sector,” Slattery noted.
“Improvements such as allowing recipients of reversionary pensions 12 months rather than the originally proposed six months to adjust their affairs for the new transfer balance cap and simplifying the capital gains tax relief provisions are welcomed.”
She added that while the legislation had introduced a number of changes that limited the concessions for super, there were a number of positive changes as well.
“The changes allowing the carry forward of unused concessional contribution cap space and allowing all taxpayers to make deductible contributions to their super are undoubtedly positives for the system,” she noted.
“These changes greatly increase the flexibility for people contributing to super, especially for women who may have had broken work patterns, allowing greater opportunities to save for retirement.”
The association said the introduction of the bills was an important step forward towards greater certainty for SMSF trustees and their advisers.
“With the legislation introduced to Parliament, SMSF trustees and their advisers can have greater certainty in beginning to adjust their superannuation strategies where necessary as the 1 July 2017 start date for most of the superannuation changes looms,” Slattery said.
“SMSF trustees affected by the law changes now have a clearer picture of where they stand and can access specialist SMSF advice to assist them going forward.”
Morrison said the bills summarised the government’s changes to super and the measures outlined earlier this year.