You will find the provisions governing the reporting and payment to the ATO of unclaimed money for members aged over 65 years old in Part 3 of the Superannuation (Unclaimed Money and Lost Members) Act 1999 (SUMLMA).
Under subsection 12(1) of the SUMLMA, an amount payable to a member of a fund (including accumulation, defined benefit and pension members) is taken to be unclaimed money if all of the following apply:
- The member has reached eligibility age.
- You have not received an amount in respect of the member (and, in the case of a defined benefits super scheme, no benefit has accrued in respect of the member) within the last two years.
- After a five year period since you last had contact with the member, you have not been able to contact them after making reasonable efforts.
Regulation 4A of the Superannuation (Unclaimed Money and Lost Members) Regulations 1999 (SUMLMR) prescribes the eligibility age for both men and women for the purposes of unclaimed money. The age is 65 years, unless the governing rules of the fund specify that a benefit is only payable if the member reaches an age greater than 65.
Under subsection 10(2) SUMLMA, if you don't know the member’s date of birth, you may determine that the member:
- attained a particular age on a particular date (if you reasonably believe that to be the case)
- turned 18 on the day they first became a member of the fund
- turned 18 on the day you first received an amount in respect of them, or
- turned 18 at the start of their eligible service period.
Example: No contact
In reviewing a member’s account, CDE fund works out that:
- the member has reached 65 years old
- they have an address for the member and have had no mail returned unclaimed
- the member set up the account themselves, and this only received personal contributions and a rollover (which were not employer sponsored)
- they have not received any amounts or had any contact from the member for over five years
- they are unable to contact the member after making reasonable attempts.
The member’s money is unclaimed.
As CDE fund is unable to contact the member after making reasonable efforts, the account becomes unclaimed money. They are required to report and pay the member’s account balance to the ATO.End of example
Example: Contact two years ago
A member has been with CDE fund for over 20 years and turns 65 years old.
Contributions ceased over five years ago and it has been established that the member is no longer employed.
The member phoned the fund and updated their address details two years ago.
The member’s money is not unclaimed.
Although the member is over 65 years old and the fund has not received an amount in respect of the member for over two years, it has been less than five years since the member last had contact with the fund.End of example
Example: Payments returned
A member of CDE fund is 65 years old and has an account in pension phase.
The pension payments are returned as a returned electronic payment, and the fund is unable to contact the member to get new payment details.
The member’s money is unclaimed.End of example
See also:Protocols for super funds for unclaimed superannuation of members aged over 65 years old.