• Applying for a certificate of coverage

    You should apply for a certificate of coverage before your employee leaves Australia.

    We'll generally assess your application within 28 days and, if the request is approved, issue a certificate of coverage to your Australian business address. Keep a copy for your records and give the original certificate to your employee to take with them overseas.

    How to apply

    To apply for a certificate of coverage, access the Certificate of Coverage request form available via the Business Portal or Tax Agent Portal.

    To access the portals, you need a secure online identification for your business by using either Manage ABN Connections or an AUSkey. Minimum security and computer requirements are needed to get started:

    • ABN
    • AUSkey (each user needs their own unique AUSkey)
    • Anti-virus and firewall protection on your computer
    • The latest version of your browser and Adobe Reader (we recommend you look at browser settings to view and print).

    If there are multiple AUSkey holders in your business, you can use a separate, standalone tool called Access Manager to manage their access and permissions to your account and our online services.

    See also:

    Amendment or extension requests

    When lodging an amendment or extension to a previously submitted request, we recommend you search for the employee name under the View previous request tab.

    A recent transfer of data has increased the number of previously processed requests appearing under the View previous request tab. Every effort has been made to migrate all previous requests – however this wasn't possible in all instances.

    Troubleshooting

    If you're experiencing problems with the certificate of coverage request form, refer to portal use troubleshooting for known issues.

    If you need further help, email us at superannuationbilateralagreements@ato.gov.au.

    If you're unable to access the portals, phone us on 13 10 20 to request a paper form.

    See also:

    Overview of the bilateral agreements

    Country and start date of agreement

    Country

    Start date

    Austria

    1 March 2017

    Belgium

    1 July 2005

    Chile

    1 July 2004

    Croatia

    1 July 2004

    Czech Republic

    1 July 2011

    Finland

    1 July 2009

    Germany

    1 October 2008

    Greece (not self-employed)

    1 October 2008

    Greece (self-employed)

    1 October 2008

    Hungary

    1 October 2012

    India

    1 January 2016

    Ireland

    1 January 2006

    Japan

    1 January 2009

    Korea

    1 October 2008

    Latvia

    1 January 2013

    Former Yugoslav Republic of Macedonia

    1 April 2011

    The Netherlands

    1 April 2003

    Norway

    1 January 2007

    The Republic of Estonia

    1 January 2018

    The Republic of Poland

    1 October 2010

    Portugal

    1 October 2002

    Slovak Republic

    1 January 2012

    Switzerland

    1 January 2008

    United States of America

    1 October 2002

    If the country where you're sending your employee is not in the list above, we don't have a bilateral agreement for double super coverage with that country. You will still need to pay super guarantee in Australia for your employee and also in the other country as required by the laws in both countries.

    Employer responsibilities

    By applying for a certificate of coverage for your employee, you're declaring that you will:

    • continue to make the required super guarantee contributions on behalf of your employee to a complying super fund or retirement savings account in Australia while they're working overseas
    • keep records of the super paid on behalf of your employee.

    We share information about certificates of coverage with authorities in the country your employee is working in.

    If you fail to meet the above requirements, we will cancel the certificate and notify the relevant foreign authorities. A cancellation means you or your employee will not be exempt from the super (or equivalent) obligations in the other country for the period of the certificate. If you fail to pay super in Australia, you are liable to pay the super guarantee charge to the ATO.

    Self-managed super funds

    If you pay super guarantee contributions to your employee's self-managed super fund (SMSF), ask your employee to check their SMSF management arrangements before they leave Australia.

    Members travelling overseas for an extended period will need to ensure the SMSF maintains its complying Australian super fund status. You'll need to pay super guarantee contributions for your employee to a different fund if the SMSF is no longer a complying fund.

    Authorising someone else as a contact

    If the certificate is to be sent to someone other than the employer, they must be listed with us as an authorised contact for certificate of coverage matters.

    The public officer or director of your company, or an authorised contact listed on our systems, can write to us and advise that another person is authorised to act on their behalf for certificate of coverage applications. 

    The authorisation should be sent to:

    Superannuation Bilateral Agreements
    Australian Taxation Office
    GPO Box 9977
    ADELAIDE SA 5001
    AUSTRALIA

    See also:

      Last modified: 11 Oct 2017QC 16526