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  • Superannuation Administration Group key messages 25 August 2021

    Opening Address/Welcome

    Tracie Crowden opened the meeting with an acknowledgment to country, welcomed those in attendance and the newly appointed members. Ian Roberts and George Strilakos were noted as apologies.

    Highlighted from the Terms of Reference were the new and retired members.

    Member rollover requests

    Sacha Vidler, Australian Securities and Investments Commission (ASIC) provided an overview of member rollover requests, and SAG members contributed to the discussion. Key points included:

    • There are a material proportion of member rollover requests that are not actioned. Closed or empty accounts were the main reason why requests were not actioned, but it can also be due to data mismatches and duplicate requests.
    • Exceptions are generated when rollover requests are not able to be actioned. How exceptions are followed-up varies between funds, but generally multiple attempts to engage the member are made before an exception is closed.
    • Annual reporting of account balances was suggested as a contributing factor behind unactioned member rollover requests, with accounts that are emptied but not closed still being presented to members as having funds for transfer. Quality of employer data may also be contributing factor.
    • There is minimal response from members where funds follow-up exceptions that are generated due to member data mismatches. A possible solution is for Member account attribute service (MAAS) data to be sent with the Electronic Portability Form (EPF).
    • ASIC is keen to get feedback from funds, including examples of what ‘reasonable mismatch’ exceptions can be resolved. Comments can be emailed to owen.short@asic.gov.au and sacha.vidler@asic.gov.au

    Fund engagement updates

    Shane Moore provided an update on recent suspicious activity with new fund accounts that have been connected to SuperMatch usage. Key messages included:

    • The first SuperMatch Alert was issued on 25 August 2021 to make funds aware of common mobile numbers that had been identified against newly opened accounts in funds. These mobile numbers were identified through a number of suspicious matters referred to AUSTRAC by funds.
    • Funds that have been reconnected to SuperMatch have been notified according to their contacts listed during the application process.
    • A copy of the alert has also been sent to Gateways, digital service providers and industry associations.

      Post meeting note – SuperMatch Alert 001 was sent with the key messages.
    • Shane Moore undertook to add all SAG members to the distribution list for future Alerts.

      Post meeting note – If SAG members would like additional individuals/mailboxes added to this distribution list, please advise sprenablingservices@ato.gov.au

    Bill Korras provided an update on the Super Enquiry Service project. Key messages included:

    • Since the last meeting, the period before the Service times out was extended from 15 minutes to 30 minutes of inactivity. If funds experience the Super Enquiry Service timing out before 30 minutes, contact Super CRT.
    • Super CRT mailbox will continue to be available, but the Service is now the preferred channel for enquiries.

    Alastair Ramsay provided an update about Section 20C notices. Key messages included:

    If funds have any questions in relation to the notices, lodge an enquiry using the Super Enquiry Service

    COVID-19 Early Release of Super Recontribution

    Julie Rowland provided an update on COVID-19 Early Release of Super (ERS) Recontribution. Key messages included:

    Post meeting note – Notice of re-contributions of COVID-19 Early Release amounts and instructions as well as web content for individuals and funds is now available.

    Recontribution of COVID-19 ERS FAQs were sent with the key messages.

    • SAG members will be advised when the deployment date is known for the following system functionality that supports ERS recontribution.
      • OSB portal change so funds can report required information to the ATO.
      • ATO system change to apply the treatment to exclude eligible COVID-19 re-contributions from an individual’s non-concessional contribution (NCC) cap calculation.
    • Members noted there had been some interest in recontribution.

    Neill Stromberg went through the following scenario that is included in fund FAQs:

    • Individuals do not provide one form for each contribution.
    • Contribution amount received by a fund is more or less than the amount on the form.

    Key discussion points included:

    • ATO will take a practical compliance approach given they will know the approved COVID-19 ERS amount, declared amount and actual amount of recontribution.
    • Funds are only required to report the information they receive, and ensure forms are signed and dated.
    • ATO will ensure the form and web content are consistent with this discussion.

    Your Future, Your Super

    Katie Constance went through a presentation on the Your Super Comparison tool and the Employer stapled super fund service.

    Post meeting note – Your Future, Your Super presentation was sent with the key messages.

    Key discussion points on the Comparison tool included:

    • Communications will be refreshed during September – October to drive traffic to the tool.
    • Funds are notified they are underperforming by Australian Prudential Regulation Authority (APRA) before it is displayed on the tool.
    • APRA is aware that a fund’s organisation name may be different to their product name, and an update is coming to improve transparency.

    Key discussion points on the Employer stapled super fund service included:

    • Online and paper Choice forms are being updated as a result of stapling.
    • The following scenarios will be added to FAQs.
      • If an employer gets an account returned which is then closed by a member and the member opens another account, they can
        • redo the request through OSB and they will get a different result once data is refreshed
        • phone the ATO for an alternate stapled fund.
      • What if an employee is stapled to a wrong account, for example, fund is unable to accept contributions?
      • If there are internal transfers within a fund, an open account is closed and a new account opened, will the service match the second account?
    • ATO welcomes other scenarios which will be added to the FAQs. Scenarios covering employee – employer and employer – fund interactions can be emailed to YourFutureYourSuper@ato.gov.au
    • Education package for employers will be provided in September.
    • ATO will be monitoring employers’ use of the service and whether their default fund is used to create new accounts. In the first 12 months, this may be followed up with nudge letters then targeted compliance action where appropriate.
    • When an employer does not pay to a stapled super fund when they were required to, they will be liable for a super guarantee shortfall charge for failure to meet choice of fund rules.
    • The ATO will be adopting a help and educate focussed approach to compliance in the first 12 months. Any remission will be considered on a case by case basis.
    • If it is discovered that an employer failed to request stapled fund details, the employee will not be advised to close down any account that was opened in a default super fund or required to move to their stapled super fund. Any ATO compliance action will be focussed on the employer.

    Rollovers v3 update

    Belinda Black provided an update on SuperStream rollovers v3 including:

    • Current progress of testing
      • Twenty-two percent of Government to Business (G2B) testing is left to do. This is expected to be finished over the next 2 to 3 weeks.
      • Three cohorts left to do Business to Business (B2B) testing. These are expected to start in late August and are scheduled to be completed before the end of September.
    • Testing results graphs for both G2B and B2B are not updated until an entity’s test matrix is sent back to the ATO.
    • Onboarding is moving forward with 10% of funds now onboarded covering 70 USIs. One SMSF provider will be live in rollovers v3 from Monday 30 August.
    • EPFs have successfully issued through SuperStream rollovers v3 as has USM inbound including Trustee Voluntary Payments, USM outbound and Section 20C notices.
    • Funds and gateways have been informed of an issue that has been identified with the country code field in release authorities. Outbound release authorities are being stopped at the gateway. Approximately 100 release authorities have been impacted, and a fix is expected to be deployed soon. EPFs may have the same issue, and further analysis is being undertaken.

      Post meeting note – this issue was resolved within 24 hours of the SAG meeting. All release authorities that were on hold were released and funds confirmed receipt. This issue did not impact EPFs.
    • Belinda Black undertook to check that the SuperStream rollover v3 implementation and onboarding learning and issues register includes an issue about returning the same account number.

      Post meeting note – after the meeting, Belinda Black spoke to the SAG member to confirm the item raised and noted that it is still being considered by the ATO (so will not form part of the next version of the learnings and issues register). Belinda Black will remain in contact with the SAG member about this item.
    • There is no communication alert when the SMSF Alias LookUp is updated so industry forums are being used to advise participants of any changes. We are now at version 17 to accommodate the SMSF provider onboarding on 30 August. Changes to this resource are coming over the next month.

      Post meeting note – search the software developers' website for 'SMSF Alias Lookup' to find the latest version.

    Reuniting More Super

    Belinda Black provided an update on the Reuniting More Super initiative. Key messages included:

    • Eight funds have asked to submit Trustee Voluntary Payments through the interim process in August.
    • Only a few eligible rollover funds (ERFs) have member accounts left to transfer, which will be done ahead of the 31 January 2022 deadline.

    Operational Insights Report

    Tracy Holloway provided an update on the Operational Insights Report (OIR). Key messages included:

    • Co-design group members will receive a sample OIR report for the fund they represent/administer and the OIR User Guide by the end of August.

      Post meeting note – sample OIR reports and OIR User Guide were delivered on 27 August for review and feedback by mid-September.
    • The next phase is on track to produce OIR reports for all of industry in November. OIR communications will commence next month.

    Other business and close

    Tracie Crowden noted that in response to fund feedback, a system change is being deployed on 23 September to add a fund’s USI to the PDF file name for Compassionate release of super approval notifications sent via the OSB. This means funds no longer need to download and open each PDF to identify the nominated fund.

    Post meeting note – Compassionate Release of Super, OSB update paper was sent with the key messages.

    Alastair Ramsay agreed to take offline a question about the ATO impact of reopening accounts, and whether these accounts can be considered for consolidation.

    Catherine Best gave thanks to the Rollover v3 team for their support.

    Tracie Crowden offered her best wishes to those impacted by lockdowns.

      Last modified: 28 Sep 2021QC 66864