ATO Takes Hold Of $730 Lost Superannuation Funds
After adapting to a new system to find members and help them recover their superannuation funds, a research by SuperRatings showed that the Australian Taxation Office (ATO) is currently holding some $730 million in “eligible roller funds.”
The figures were estimated to be at about $393 million only a year earlier. These funds belong to those people the ATO have not yet been contacted. The ATO is currently handling some 2.3 million accounts.
It used to be customary process for lost super to be transferred to rollover funds in the previous years. But in the last quarter of 2010, some changes were made allowing ATO to control the accounts. These covered superannuation funds, which carry less than $200 in the balance and where owners have not been in contact for over five years.
In light of the changes, eligible rollover funds (ERF) have dropped membership to some 22.6 percent. But its funds remain unaffected, falling just below 1 percent or some 1.39 million accounts. This small change comprises those accounts with below $200 in its balance, which the ATO is now handling.
The average ERF account balance also increased to 18 percent or about $1,224 per account. According to SuperRating, this is a significant figure and is expected to continue to increase.
SuperRatings has projected funds will continue to decrease by 2014 with the introduction of a new process requiring “automatic consolidation,” where account owners will be tracked using their tax file numbers.
Super fund accounts are also expected to decrease in the next two years. Those who need to inquire may visit the ATO website.