SMSF – transition to retirement income streams
This document provides information about issues you, as a trustee of a self-managed super fund (SMSF), need to consider when:
This information applies to taxed, complying super funds that commence a TRIS in the form of a pension (but not an annuity).
In this document, references to SMSFs include former SMSFs unless otherwise indicated.
Transition to retirement
The transition to retirement measure allows people who have reached their preservation age to have access to their superannuation benefits without having to retire or leave their job. This measure allows people to access their super savings in the form of a specific kind of pension or income stream called a TRIS. Essentially, a TRIS is an account-based pension from where lump sum payments can only be made in limited circumstances.
Before you start paying a TRIS to a member, the member must have reached their preservation age (that is, the minimum age that a member can access their preserved super benefits without satisfying another condition of release). For those born before 1 July 1960, the preservation age is 55. The preservation age of those born on or after 1 July 1960 is higher.
If a member has already met a condition of release with a nil cashing restriction, they can access their superannuation benefits in other ways and don't need a TRIS. In these circumstances, as trustee, you can start paying the member a normal account-based pension or you can pay the member's benefits as a lump sum without having to go through the process and cost of setting up a TRIS.
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