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The low income super contribution (LISC) is a government superannuation payment of up to $500 to help low-income earners save for retirement.
If you earn $37,000 or less a year, you may be eligible to receive a LISC payment directly into your super fund.
You don't need to do anything to receive a LISC.
If you lodge an income tax return – we will pay your LISC into your super fund when we have received information from your super fund about your contributions. Most payments are made after October.
If you do not lodge an income tax return – we will work out your eligibility using information we hold about your income, and information from your super fund. These payments are made after October in the following financial year.
The LISC is 15% of the concessional (before tax) super contributions you or your employer pays into your super fund for the 2012-13 to the 2016-17 financial years.
The maximum payment you can receive for a financial year is $500, and the minimum is $10. If you're eligible for less than $10, we will round this up to $10.
You need to make sure your super fund has your tax file number (TFN) – without your TFN, your super fund cannot accept a LISC payment.
You can check whether your fund has your TFN by looking at your member statement to see if it has been quoted – if it has not been quoted, contact your fund and provide it to them.
You are eligible for the LISC if you satisfy all the following requirements:
Find out more
For information about how to calculate your adjusted taxable income, refer to Income tests - an overview.
Example: Working out LISC eligibility
Julie earns $36,000 a year as a childcare assistant. In the 2012–13 financial year, Julie’s employer makes a super guarantee contribution of $3,240 into her super fund. Julie lodges an income tax return which includes tax deductions of $1,000, resulting in an adjusted taxable income of $35,000 ($36,000 - $1,000).
The table below shows how Julie worked out whether she was eligible for a LISC:
Super fund has my TFN?
Made concessional super contributions?
Had an adjusted taxable income of $37,000 or less?
Received at least 10% of income from employment, business or a combination of both?
Had not held a temporary resident visa during the year?
Julie will receive a low income super contribution of $486 (15% of $3,240) paid into her super fund.
If a person dies, their estate may be entitled to the LISC. Eligibility for the LISC is worked out using the eligibility criteria described above, but the income tests are applied as if the person had continued to earn income at the same rate for the entire year.
You can apply to have the payment made directly to the estate – download the form from Application for direct payment of government super contributions.
You do not need to do anything specifically to get the LISC. If you lodge an income tax return, your LISC will be paid directly to your super fund account when we have processed your income tax return and received information from your super fund about your super contributions.
If you do not lodge an income tax return, we will work out your eligibility using contributions information from your super fund, in addition to other information we collect.
Because we will pay the LISC directly into your super fund, you need to make sure your super fund has your TFN. Without your TFN, your super fund cannot accept a LISC payment.
Your super fund will let you know on your account statement that you have received your LISC.
You can apply to have your LISC paid directly to you if you have reached your ‘preservation age’ and are retired. Download the form from Application for direct payment of government super contributions.
If you are a low-income earner, you can also receive super co-contributions when you make personal (after tax) super payments – for more information, refer to Super co-contribution.
You can calculate your LISC manually or use our online calculator.
Work it out
To calculate the LISC you could be eligible to receive based on your income and super contributions, use the LISC calculator.
Before using the online calculator or doing any manual calculations, read the information on income tests and how they affect you.
Manually calculating your LISC
To manually calculate your LISC, work out your concessional super contributions for a financial year and multiply by 0.15, rounding to the nearest cent.
The maximum payment you can receive for a financial year is $500 and the minimum is $10 – but if you're eligible for less than $10, we will round this up to $10.
Information about concessional contributions, refer to Guide to superannuation for individuals – Concessional (before tax) contributions.
Example: Manually calculating a LISC
Simon earns $32,000 in the 2012–13 financial year and meets all other LISC eligibility criteria. Simon's employer makes a super guarantee contribution of $2,880 into his super fund. Simon also salary sacrifices $300 to super.
His total concessional contributions for 2012–13 are $3,180 ($2,880 + $300).
Simon will receive a LISC of $477 ($3,180 x 0.15) which will be paid into his super fund.
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