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  • SASG minutes 12 September 2018

    Meeting details

    Venue: ATO Office, 52 Goulburn Street, Sydney

    Date: Wednesday 20 June 2018

    Start: 10.00am

    Finish: 2.35pm

    Chair: Robert Drummond

    Secretariat: Shaun Ferabend

    Contact phone: (07) 3121 7466

    Note: SASG agendas, minutes and related papers are not binding on the ATO or any of the other bodies referred to in these papers. While every effort is made to accurately record views expressed, the wording necessarily represents a summary of statements of general position only, and care should be taken in interpreting those statements. These papers reflect the position at the date of release (unless otherwise noted) and readers should note that the position on any issue may subsequently change.



    Erin Quinn, UniSuper

    May Low, Colonial First State

    Jimmy Sun, BT Financial

    David Kerr, NAB

    Sue Pearce, Link Group

    Kelly Kerr, AMP

    Maria Ainslag, Zurich

    Zain Dom, Link Group

    Lex Dransfield, CSC

    Heide Stewart, IOOF

    David Delaney , ANZ

    Ian Roberts, NAB

    Tina Cifelli, AMP

    Andrea Cooper, IRESS

    Ari Gerasimou, CBA

    Narelle Telfer, Mercer

    Catherine Best, Qsuper

    Matt Pritchard, Sunsuper

    Anthony Relf, Mercer

    Amanda Gunn, Mercer

    John Hardas, Link Group

    Kathy Calman, Perpetual

    Fiona Galbraith, ASFA

    Mary Gale, Syncsoft

    ATO Attendees

    Robert Drummond, Assistant Commissioner, Client Account Services

    Shaun Ferabend, Director, Client Relationships, Intermediaries & Assurance

    Reece Parry, Director, Project Lead – Budget Measures and Change Implementation

    Ian Bullman, Director, Employer and Individual Client Engagement

    Tracie Crowden, Director, SPR SS Reporting to Government Design

    Frances Sainsbury, Director, Application Architecture & Design

    Kylie Smith, Director, APRA Fund Client Experience, Client Engagement

    Blair Lauchlan, Project officer, SPR INDs New Measures Projects

    Shannon Grubb, Director, SPR Practice Management

    Stephanie Tanchevski, Business Analyst, Client Account Services, Client Relationship Team, SASG Administration


    Adam Wright, CBA

    Daniela Palermo, CBA

    Timothy Coulter, OneVue

    Dianne Sherry, IRESS

    Tania Wilson, IOOF

    Jayne Pocock, Qsuper

    George Strilakos, Unisuper

    Brett Mcleod, Colonial First State

    Marcia Pitstock, OneVue

    Louise Hemar, Mercer

    Rebecca Scott , Perpetual

    June Tang, ANZ

    Dean O'Malley, SA Super

    Agenda items

    1. Welcome

    Assistant Commissioner, Client Account Services, Robert Drummond opened the meeting:

    • Welcomed all in attendance.
    • Acknowledgment of the traditional owners and custodians of the land.

    2. Implementation Update for Downsizer, First Home Superannuation Savers Scheme

    Presented by Reece Parry

    SASG was provided with an update on the implementation and status of the Compassionate Release of Superannuation (CRS) program, which transferred to the ATO from DHS on 1 July 2018; and the First Home Super Saver (FHSS) scheme and Downsizer housing measures which commenced on 1 July 2018.

    On 1 July 2018, the ATO introduced two new online systems for individuals to apply for the early release of superannuation on grounds of compassionate release and under the FHSS scheme.

    Funds have reported receiving downsizer contributions, with a few of these being reported to the ATO.

    Action Items

    Will fact sheets for FHSSS be distributed via CRT alert?

    Industry request for further advice on the 13 month turnaround for determining ineligible Downsizer contributions and subsequent action funds are required to take e.g. returning money to members (including where the account has been converted to an income stream) and re-reporting obligations.

    3. Small Business Clearing House

    Presented by Ian Bullman

    SBSCH System

    The SBSCH has now been operational for six months. During this period we have experienced two Super Guarantee quarterly periods and an end of financial year deadline; considered peak periods for the service.

    Since transitioning in late February, the SBSCH has made over half a million payments totalling over $2 billion. In addition to payments the SBSCH has realised an uptake of nearly 40,000 new employer registrations.

    System Improvement

    Significant feedback from SBSCH users has been received in relation to the Payment Summary functionality and the desire for it to emulate the Reporting Bill from the legacy system. Consequently a prototype was developed in line with the previous system’s design.

    An improvement to the SBSCH user interface that will allow users to view, and to generate a PDF/Print friendly copy of the complete content of a lodged Payment Instruction will be deployed on 29 September. The improvement means employee contribution amounts, the total to pay, and the SBSCH payment options will all be visible on the one screen.

    This prototype was recently tested with a group of small business owners and tax professionals and the feedback provided was universally positive. Given that success, we are pleased to announce that deployment of the improvement is scheduled for late September/early October.

    SuperStream Message Change

    The ATO are currently working on, in consultation with gateways and administrators, a solution to bring forward the sending of SBSCH SuperStream messages by 24 hours. This positive change will allow funds to be able to match the payment with the message earlier, meaning funds may also apply the payments to member accounts earlier.

    We don’t yet have a timeframe for this change to be deployed.


    In the last couple of weeks we communicated to small business and tax and BAS agents the importance of getting it right when entering information into the SBSCH. By doing so it reduces the possibility of a superfund rejecting the payment and it subsequently being returned to the ATO for further remediation. We’ve specifically asked SBSCH users the following to ensure the super fund is able to accept their payment:

    • to select a correct Unique Superannuation Identifier (USI)
    • to enter valid characters for fund names
    • to enter the correct super fund member account member
    • to enter the correct ABN, bank account and Electronic Service Address for their SMSF

    Current issues

    Working through instances of:

    Invalid end date

    Invalid dates are being entered into the SBSCH ICP interface. One date can invalidate an entire data file containing thousands of super contributions.

    1. The ICP SBSCH instruction form is created with a pre-populated contribution period end date of 31  December 9999, which is a date not accepted by some funds' validation schemas. While ATO staff procedures require this date to be replaced, forms are sometimes submitted with this date.

    2. The ICP UI SBSCH instruction form does not have validation controls on contribution period start and end dates fields.

    3. The ICP UI SBSCH employee details form does not have validation controls on date of birth, and employment start and end date fields.

    • Currently progressing a business change request.
    • Currently investigating
    • One instance of Invalid TFN
    • Incorrect ABN
    • Duplicate Employer Accounts

    Action Items

    Does the reporting bill have a PRN?

    Industry request for further information on the efix for Employers validating USI

    4. Combined Caps Implementation Update

    Presented by Blair Lauchlan

    New measures arising from the 16-17 Budget and the changes to caps are approaching a key deployment milestone.

    The first utilisation of the Total Superannuation Balance (TSB) from 30 June 2017; will see an increase in the population of clients impacted by contributions rules that reference the TSB.

    This agenda item will provide an understanding of the key timeline and how the scheduled system upgrades on 1 October 2018; will begin to impact funds, tax professionals and members.

    Updates include

    Changes and duplicate accounts associated with
    Total Superannuation Balance

    Following the system upgrades on 1 October the Total Superannuation Balance will be recalculated for every member.

    Concessional Contributions:
    New cap and calculations for 2017-18FY

    Determinations for the 17-18 financial year will start to issue from mid-October 2018 and funds should be prepared for an influx of engagement and queries from members who are receiving Excess concessional contributions (ECC) determinations

    Non-Concessional Contributions:
    New cap and impacts from total super balance

    An individual’s total superannuation balance may also now impact their non-concessional contribution cap and their ability to access the bring-forward arrangement.

    Determinations for the 2017-18 financial year will start to issue from mid to late October 2018.

    Updates to Carry Forward Concessional Contributions

    Carry forward concessional contributions will be calculated and available to use on a five year rolling basis. Eligible individuals will first be able to access their unused contributions on 1 July 2019

    Combined Release Authority:
    Timeline and expected volumes.

    From October 2018, a single release authority / release authority statement product will be deployed for Concessional, Non-Concessional and Div293.

    Super funds will have a consistent destination to release amounts, being the ATO and a consistent timeframe to action release authorities.

    Action Items

    ATO to share relevant combined caps communication materials with funds to assist with resource planning and member enquiries. This may include contact centre scripting, process/timeframe map, copies of the determinations and Q&As.

    5. MAAS/MATS Onboarding Update

    Presented by Tracie Crowden

    The alternate reporting solution will provide a channel for:

    • Low volume reporting of accounts and transactional contributions for those who are not SuperStream (SBR2) enabled.
    • Low volume reporting of contribution types that haven’t been added to a registry system of a SuperStream enabled client (i.e. Downsizer).
    • Situations where a fund is in the process of changing registry systems and/or technical platforms; and eventually
    • Supporting the lodgment of original member contribution statement (MCS) and amendments for MCS lodged up until the 2017–18 financial year.

    The Online Portal solution design is currently being worked through with a cross section of industry representatives, including members of defined benefit funds and those trustees and administrators who are mostly likely to require the alternate solution.

    User testing forms a critical checkpoint for web design assurance and some level of user testing will be conducted on both the minimal viable product as well as the enduring solution to ensure the design is intuitive and fit for purpose.

    As the design unfolds, we will have a better idea of the users and therefore what reporting channels will be retained. For example how we cater for those that only have retirement phase reporting, such as Life Insurance products.


    The Online Portal (alternative reporting channel) solution design has been broken into the following delivery phases:

    • 2018 Q3 - Downsizer MATS: provides specific ‘Non Employer only’ transactions to be lodged, adjusted or cancelled (separate Capability Overview).  
    • 2018 Q4 - Minimal viable product: allows all transaction types to use the Downsizer MATS design. MAAS can be opened (lodged), updated and closed.
    • 2019 Q1 - Enduring design: displays MAAS and MATS data that they have reported. It provides responses to the ‘user’ on the ATO processing of their reporting and aligns the user experience to the ATO Online patterns and provides lists of MATS transactions.
    • 2021 - MCS/ACMS has been excluded from this high level design at this stage due to timeframes of the requirement.

    6. Rollover v3 and what this will contain

    Presented by Tracie Crowden

    • The announced changes to include SMSFs into SuperStream as well as the related discretionary change items have been explored with a broad Industry consultation group.
    • Industry consultation has strengthened the argument to add in as much efficiency as possible, and to improve the experience in this new version to reduce build costs, minimise version control and replace a manual paper system.
    • Industry has provided strong advocacy for the additional changes, subject to ATO capacity.
    • The ATO are considering the discretionary changes. A decision is expected in the next month or so.
    • The discretionary changes scoped within project 2929 include:
    • Extending the rollover message to provide a digital solution for the newly harmonised release authorities – as well as the Commissioner’s Commutation Authority
    • Remediating a number of current anomalies from Rollover version 2 implementation.
    • Despite the discretionary nature of these changes there are significant benefits in leveraging this strategic opportunity on the back of two main drivers:
    • The non-discretionary policy change requires the current rollover message to be re-versioned, thus providing an opportunity to make additional change at the same time, lessening costs.
    • The harmonisation of release authorities will remove the complexity that hampered a digital solution previously and supports reusing the rollover message, providing an efficient and straight-through process for the release of excess funds.

    7. APRA Fund Communications Reference Group

    Presented by Kylie Smith

    The last APRA Fund Communications Reference Group meeting was held on 29  August 2018. The purpose was for this to be a short term reference group to explore strategies to address communications and engagement irritants.

    A number of initiatives have already been delivered including:

    • a new monthly super newsletter
    • progressively publishing news articles to throughout the month
    • changed the What's New section of to make it more prominent
    • a regular news article about the common queries received from industry (including links to more information)
    • improved search functionality for our most used pages, so that more relevant content is returned through Google and ATO website searches
    • a summary of the ATO's various digital channels and how to use them
    • ATO definitions page has been updated with Super terms and acronyms.

    There are further initiatives still underway and some that will take a bit longer to deliver, including working with the group to Beta test some enhancements and structural changes to the APRA funds section of

    The SASG noted that there was value in continuing to discuss communications and engagement irritants and improvements. It was agreed that at each SASG some time will be set aside in the agenda to continue these conversations. The reference group can be reconvened on an ad hoc, as needed basis.

    The ATO is also looking to progress a change to ATO online that will see the super fund name and web address displayed at the USI level. Currently it is displayed at the entity/ABN level.

    8. ATO Online Display of member information update on consultation

    Presented by Kylie Smith

    The SASG was provided with an update on an industry consultation session held on 6 September 208 on the ATO online display of member information.

    The consultation covered various aspects of the ATO online display, including:

    • ATO online display of member information - the individual's experience and draft data visibility principles - contextual information
    • ATO online framework
    • Display of super guaranteed information - display of Single Touch Payroll (STP) and MATS data
    • Employee on-boarding choice screes and transfer of super screens
    • Display of contributions data to support contributions caps.

    The ATO has commenced displaying STP information received from employers. Some key statistics are:

    • 40,00 employers are reporting through STP
    • One third of those are small businesses
    • 2.7 million individuals are reported through STP
    • In excess of 200,000 hits on ATO online of individuals viewing their STP information.

    The ATO is intending to commence displaying the MATS employer contributions data from December 2018. This will support the ATO’s client engagement strategy of creating a level playing field for employers and to inform individuals on what the employer has paid towards the employee’s super.

    Whilst there was in principle support from industry around the display of employer contributions, it was noted that not all funds will have onboarded to MATS by December 2018. We will be working with industry on informational messaging to include on ATO online explaining potential data gaps, to minimise and member confusion and phone calls through to funds and the ATO. It was also noted that change management will be important for employers, funds and members.

    9. Super 2024 Vision

    Presented by Shannon Grubb

    • ATO is requesting feedback from industry regarding Future of Super 2014 Vision and Goals.
    • Industry expectations include -
    • Automated Engagement services goals around security and privacy
    • Goals to include services and support to the superannuation industry and stability of services.
    • A focus on Super guarantee payments
    • Work on trust and confidence in light of the Royal commission
    Action items

    Agenda Item

    Action required





    Will fact sheets for FHSSS be distributed via CRT alert?

    Reece Parry




    Industry request for further advice on the13 month turnaround for determining ineligible Downsizer contributions and subsequent action funds are required to take e.g. returning money to members (including where the account has been converted to an income stream) and re-reporting obligations.

    Reece Parry




    Does the reporting bill have a PRN

    Ian Bullman




    Industry request for further information on the efix for Employers validating USI

    Ian Bullman




    ATO to share relevant combined caps communication materials with funds to assist with resource planning and member enquiries. This may include contact centre scripting, process/timeframe map,

    copies of the determinations and Q&As.

    Blair Lauchlan



    Kylie Smith



    Meeting closed 1:15 pm.

      Last modified: 19 Oct 2018QC 57029