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  • Reminder about Unclaimed Super Money reporting obligations and avoiding common errors

    You have an obligation to report and pay your unclaimed superannuation money (USM) for the 31 December 2020 unclaimed money day by the scheduled statement date of 30 April 2021.

    This applies to:

    • members aged over 65 years
    • deceased members
    • non-member spouse
    • former temporary residents
    • small and insoluble lost member accounts
    • inactive low balance accounts.

    You should ensure that accounts reported and paid as USM are closed immediately through the Member Account Attribute Service (MAAS), so that accounts cease displaying to individuals in ATO online services.

    If you have no amounts to report and pay in accordance with Superannuation Unclaimed Money and Lost Members Act 1999 (SUMLMA), you are required to advise us of this by lodging a non-lodgment advice.

    Common USM reporting errors

    You should take care to avoid common errors in your USM reporting, including:

    • Re-using previously used payment reference numbers (PRNs) within a 12-month period

    You must provide a unique PRN with each individual USM data message. Any PRN that is re-used will result in that data message being suspended and require manual processing.

    • PRN for the payment and data message aren’t identical

    We will only allocate the payment if both the PRN in the USM data message and payment are identical. Note PRNs are case sensitive.

    • Making multiple payments for a single data message or making a single payment for multiple data messages

    There must be a one-to-one relationship between a payment and a USM data message. That is, a USM data message must only contain data relating to a single payment to a financial institution, and the payment must be relation to a single data message.

    • Amounts paid not matching the value included in the data message

    If you identify an issue during your reconciliation or the ATO contacts you because a payment does not match the message, one of the following will need to occur:

    • Overpayment - you can request a refund of the excess amount
    • Underpayment - you will need to make a top up payment for the difference.

    This manual reverse workflow can be avoided by taking care and proactively ensuring the amount paid matches the amount in the message. If you identify an issue during your reconciliation, you can contact for assistance.

    • Incorrect message and or transaction type used on USM data message

    You must only send the USM transaction type to us when sending a USM data message. This includes where a member’s entitlements are sent to us as a result of a Section 20C notice (former temporary resident) being issued for the member.

    When a transaction type other than USM such as rollover transaction request (RTR) is used, the data message rejects which suspends the payment. USM reporting errors delay processing of these entitlements to member accounts and potential proactive consolidation.

    Note a zero balance on the Statement of Account (SoA) does not confirm all payments and messages have been processed correctly. For example, if a data message is rejected, the corresponding payment will suspend, and neither will appear on the SoA.

    Accurate and complete USM reporting

    Ensure you have appropriate processes in place to meet your legislative obligations. Your assessment of whether an account meets the appropriate definitions under the SUMLMA and associated regulations, should be complete at the time of reporting.

    For assistance with your reporting obligations, email

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      Last modified: 25 Mar 2021QC 65149