AUSTRALIA - Further regulations have been put in place as part of the government's ongoing programme of ‘Simplified Superannuation' reforms.
Minister for revenue and assistant treasurer Peter Dutton claimed the new regulations provided a “simplified minimum standard for pensions”.
He continued: “For the vast majority of income stream products, the new minimum standards will give retirees greater discretion over the amount of income they can draw from their pension each year.
“The new rules will also accommodate both account-based and more traditional guaranteed income stream products. Retirees will therefore retain the ability to choose between these two broad product categories.
“The regulations also give effect to changes to the portability of benefits, including introducing a standard portability form. From 1 July 2007, the maximum timeframe in which a fund has to action a member’s request to transfer benefits will be reduced from 90 to 30 days.”
Other amendments included the removal of the requirement for compulsory cashing of superannuation benefits for people over the age of 65; revised rules for the payment of superannuation death benefits; new rules for the acceptance of member contributions made without a tax file number; and improvements to the regulation of self-managed superannuation funds.
Yesterday, treasurer Peter Costello announced an ageing population remained “the biggest economic challenge for Australia over the medium and long term”, following the publication of the federal government’s second Intergenerational Report (IGR).
Speaking in an interview with Philip Clark, Costello said: “On our current estimates the additional spending required to look after the aged population by 2047 would be such that the difference between spending and revenue would be about A$35bn per annum unless we take measures to stop it.”
Most respondents in this week's Pensions Buzz do not think businesses should be able suspend AE contributions if in financial distress.
Former BHS owner Dominic Chappell has lost the appeal against his section 72 conviction and sentence for failing to hand over information to The Pensions Regulator (TPR).
This week's top stories include Marsh and McLennan Companies agreeing to buy JLT, and the home secretary calling for AE to be scrapped in a no-deal Brexit scenario.
Lesley Titcomb says the watchdog wants closer interactions with pension funds to spot problems sooner and act before having to use its more stringent powers