WA Super News
Coronavirus and early access to your super
Last updated: 15 April 2020
While superannuation helps our members save for retirement, the government has recognised that for those significantly financially affected by the Coronavirus, accessing some of those savings today may outweigh the benefits of maintaining those savings until retirement.
- If you are experiencing financial stress as a result of coronavirus, you may be able to obtain early access to your superannuation.
- To apply you must go directly to the ATO’s myGov website.
- You cannot apply through WA Super.
- Applications are open from 20 April 2020 when the ATO makes the application form available.
- If you are eligible, you can apply to withdraw up to $10,000 in the 2019-20 financial year, and up to another $10,000 next financial year.
Are you eligible for early access to your super?
To apply for early release of your super, you must satisfy one or more of the following requirements:
1. You are unemployed,
2. You are eligible to receive a:
- job seeker payment, or
- youth allowance for jobseekers, or
- parenting payment (including the single and partnered payments), or
- special benefit, or
- farm household allowance,
3. On or after 1 January 2020, you:
- were made redundant, or
- had your working hours reduced by 20% or more, or
- are a sole trader and your business was suspended or there was a reduction in your turnover of 20% or more.
What is the process for early access to your super?
If you think you are eligible, you can apply online through myGov for early access to your super from 20 April 2020.
You do not need to contact WA Super.
To help you understand the process to request early access to your super, see the myGov steps below
Once we received your approved notification from the ATO, we will endeavour to make your payment to your nominated bank account as soon as possible.
The ATO has advised that you should also check your personal and contact details with us are correct and up-to-date by logging into your Member Online account and make any changes.
Should you access your super early?
If you are eligible to access your super early and you are experiencing financial stress as a result of Coronavirus, you may have real and immediate need to access your super. However, before you request early access, you should consider:
1. Potential impact on your retirement savings - Your super is a long-term investment for your retirement. You may lose the benefit of compound interest (earning interest on your interest) if you make an early access withdrawal.
In addition, you will be we withdrawing your funds when the price of the invested assets (value) are low and your super may miss out financially when the share markets eventually recovers.
To calculate the impact on your retirement savings, please use the early access calculator:
2. Other financial support that may be available to you – you may also want to check your eligibility to see what other financial assistance is being provided by the Government to Australians impacted by COVID-19 through various support payments, including:
- moneysmart.gov.au – COVID-19 Financial Assistance
- treasury.gov.au – Coronavirus support for individuals and households
- serviceaustalia.gov.au - Coronavirus Financial support
3. If your insurance cover may be affected - If you hold insurance cover it makes up part of your financial security. If you want to keep your insurance cover, it's important to check you have enough funds in your super account to pay the cost after accessing your super.
If you are currently receiving an insured benefit or being assessed for an insured benefit, you can feel confident that TAL, our insurer, has the necessary plans in place to ensure business continuity. If you have any concerns or questions that relate to a current claim or a pending claim, please contact our member services team who can assist you.
If you make a withdrawal from your account and your account balance becomes zero, you will have insufficient funds to pay your insurance premiums and may lose your insurance cover. If insurance premiums remain unpaid for more than 60 days, your insurance policy will be cancelled. We are also required by law to cancel your insurance cover if no contributions are received into your account for a period of 16 continuous months.
If you have Income Protection cover and you become unemployed, your insurance cover will continue, as long as you still meet the eligibility criteria, and premiums will still be deducted from your account. You will be able to make a claim up to 60 days, after you become unemployed.
To check how much your insurance is costing you, log on to your Member Online account.
For more information on the types of insurance cover and eligibility, please read our Insurance Guide.
WA Super is here to help
You can book a one-on-one appointment with one of our account managers either online or over-the-phone, by clicking the link below and selecting either
- 1-on-1 Appointment with WA Super Account Manager or
- 1-on-1 Appointment with Sean Hutchinson.
Your online appointment can be on a laptop, PC, tablet or smartphone and you do not need any special software; only internet access.