ATO, Superannuation

myGov anomalies not absolute

myGov early access super

SMSF trustees can still gain early access to super under COVID-19 financial relief measures even if their myGov account states their funds are invalid.

A technical expert has advised certain glitches some SMSF members are experiencing with the myGov system indicating their funds are invalid should not exclude them from applying for early access to their super benefits under the coronavirus economic relief measure.

One specific issue typical to this predicament is having the SMSF member’s myGov account reflect a zero balance for their fund.

“This could happen because it’s a newly established self-managed super fund that hasn’t yet lodged its first [annual] return or it may be the case that it has only recently lodged,” SMSF Association deputy chief executive and policy and education director Peter Burgess said at the industry body’s Technical Day 2020 held yesterday.

“[However] the client can still withdraw an amount from their fund, even though it’s showing as a zero balance. But what they will need to do, the trustees will need to ensure they have a sufficient balance [for the drawdown].

“The ATO will still release the determination so it won’t stop the client actually withdrawing an amount from their fund, even though they have an SMSF account appearing on myGov with a zero balance.”

The other scenario Burgess identified as causing angst for SMSF members wanting early access to their super benefits as a coronavirus financial hardship relief measure is where their fund does not appear on the myGov system at all.

“This could happen because the fund has an overdue annual return. As we know if we’re late lodging our annual return, the status on Super Fund Lookup is changed to ‘regulation details removed’. That will result in the fund not appearing on the myGov screens,” he pointed out.

“So if you have a client in that situation, where they have been late lodging their return but they do need to access their money early, then they need to contact the ATO.”

According to Burgess, the regulator will still release the amount needed under these circumstances.

During the same session he revealed the SMSF Association has called on the ATO to correct an anomaly concerning transfer balance account debits calculated for commuted market-linked pensions.

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