Contributions changes pique adviser interest

super contribution changes

Advisers are showing a high degree of interest in the changes to the downsizer contributions thresholds and the amendment to the work test rules.

Changes to superannuation rules, such as the lowering of the qualification age for downsizer contributions and the amendment to the work test requirement, are issues that are top of mind among advisers being serviced by the BT technical services team for this financial quarter.

The age threshold for downsizer contributions fell from 65 to 60 on 1 July 2022 and legislation has been tabled in parliament to reduce it even further to age 55.

BT technical consultant Tim Howard said while advisers are showing interest in this change, there are other issues to consider should the latest parliamentary bill be passed.

“Advisers with clients who are about to turn 55 years of age and are planning to sell their home, may wish to consider the timing of the legislation,” Howard noted.

It is expected the bill will be passed, receive royal assent and come into effect on either 1 October 2022 or 1 January 2023.

According to the financial services organisation, the change to the work test rules is consistently one of the most popular technical topics among advisers.

Regarding this issue, the BT technical services team reminded practitioners the requirement to satisfy the work test still applied to individuals aged between 67 and 74 who are looking to make personal deductible contributions.

Advisers have also been raising queries about changes to the law governing the Commonwealth Seniors Health Card (CSHC).

Legislation has been tabled in parliament that will see the CSHC income thresholds for singles jump from $57,761 to $90,000 and for couples increase from $92,412 to $144,000.

If this bill is passed, it is expected the CSHC will be available for an additional 44,000 Australians effective from 20 September 2022.

“Becoming eligible for the Commonwealth Seniors Health Card gives you access to valuable concessions, such as cheaper medicine under the Pharmaceutical Benefits Scheme. Visits to the doctor can potentially be bulk billed and people can receive a refund of medical costs when they reach the Medicare safety net. Additionally, card holders may also receive economic support payments which were worth $1000 across 2020 and 2021,” Howard noted.

Other subjects advisers have asked the BT technical services team about include the impending indexation of the general transfer balance cap and the Home Equity Access Scheme.

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