Treasury has opened consultation on new legislation that aims to improve the flexibility of superannuation for older Australians.
The draft laws, if enacted, would see the Superannuation Industry (Supervision) Regulations 1994 changed to allow people aged 65 and 66 to make voluntary contributions to their superannuation without meeting the work test.
The change would also see the maximum age increased to 74 for spouse contributions, adding an extra five-year period for these to occur from its current age cap of 69.
As the law currently stands, people aged 65 to 74 can only make voluntary contributions to their superannuation where they have worked a minimum of 40 hours over a 30-day period in a given financial year.
The government is also pushing for a change to the Income Tax Assessment Act 1997.
Such a change would enable people under the age of 65 to make up to three years of non-concessional contributions under bring-forward arrangements, with the effect of extending access to people aged 65 and 66 for the first time.
A statement from Senator Jane Hume in her role as Assistant Minister for Superannuation said the draft legislation reflects the government’s “ongoing commitment to ensuring all Australians have additional flexibility in how they save as they transition to retirement”.
She said that the Coalition “understands the realities of the modern workplace”.
“Work patterns have evolved, and more women are rejoining the workforce than ever before.”
Senator Hume highlighted how “our superannuation system needs the flexibility to match”.
Treasury is seeking community views on the draft bill and regulations, with a view to the proposed changes becoming applicable to contributions made in the 2020–21 financial year.
The consultation period is now live and will run until 3 April 2020.