AUSTRALIA - The Superannuation Complaints Tribunal (SCT) has called for clearer guidance and information regarding death benefits and how they are handled.
Due to the complex nature of death benefits, it is often possible that more than one party may have a legitimate claim to dependency. The SCT took the view that it was most suitable to look for the moral or legal right of the claimants to seek financial support in retirement had the superannuation scheme member not died.
The SCT said there was a lack of understanding among members and legal advisers about the operation of superannuation death benefits. In particular, the SCT underlined the interaction between superannuation and wills and the legal distinction between nominating preferred beneficiaries and binding death nominations.
Over the past year, complaints to the council rose by 12% although the number of complaints resolved by conciliation was up by 9%. Complaints withdrawn by complainants increased by 36%.
The Department for Work and Pensions (DWP) has launched a website dedicated to signposting people to where they can receive guidance typically associated with a so-called 'mid-life MOT'.
This week's edition of Professional Pensions is out now.
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