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  • Understanding your options

    There are several steps you should take to make sure you understand your options and the financial impacts of the early release of super.

    On this page:

    Contact your super fund

    You should contact your super fund to ask about:

    • whether they will release super early under compassionate grounds
    • whether there is sufficient balance in your account
    • any fees for releasing super early under compassionate grounds
    • tax on the amount released
    • implication on any insurance attached to your accounts.

    If your fund does not permit early release of super, you may be able to transfer your super to a different provider that allows early release on compassionate grounds.

    If you are a member of an exempt public sector super scheme (EPSSS), do not apply to us. You need to apply directly to your scheme for early release of super. EPSSS have their own state and territory laws for early release of super.

    If you have a self-managed super fund, you still need our approval to access your super early.

    How tax applies

    There are no special tax rates for a super withdrawal on compassionate grounds. It is paid and taxed as a normal single super lump sum. The tax rates depend upon various factors, including your age and the components of the super lump sum. Refer to our Super Lump sum tax table for more information.

    See also:

    Seek financial advice

    You may want to talk to an independent financial adviser before applying for compassionate release of super. They may be able to tell you about other options to access the money required to meet your specific expenses, for example the National Disability Insurance Scheme (NDIS).

    Releasing your super early will generally count towards your assessable income for income tax purposes. You will need to include it in your tax return. It can affect any family tax benefit or child support you receive.

    If you are under the preservation age, you need to pay tax on any lump sum payment received from your early release of super. The rate of tax is dependent on the components of the amount released. Your super fund will provide you with the correct amount.

    See also:

    Next steps:

      Last modified: 05 Feb 2021QC 60034