The latest figures from the Australian Prudential Regulation Authority (APRA) show that over the second week in July, 472,000 repeat applications to access super early were made, bringing the total amount of repeat applicants to 818,000 as of 12 July.
The total value of payments made during the week was $6.2 billion, with $25.3 billion paid out since inception of the scheme.
Australians have been able to apply to withdraw up to $10,000 of their super for the second time this year, between 1 July and 24 September, provided they meet the eligibility criteria.
Repeat applicants have so far averaged $8,755 in payments, with the average payment since inception of the scheme on 20 April sitting at $7,718.
APRA’s latest figures show that 3.3 million payments have now been made, but they are not reflective of the number of Australians who have actually withdrawn their super, as the regulator includes applications from those with multiple super accounts.
The ATO has begun to look closely at tax schemes involving the early release of super, including where taxpayers withdraw and re-contribute super to claim a tax deduction.
Behaviours that will attract the Tax Office’s attention include applying where there is no change to the applicant’s regular salary and wage or employment information, artificially arranging your affairs to meet the eligibility criteria, and withdrawing and re-contributing super for a tax advantage.
It will look to apply the general anti-avoidance rule Part IVA where schemes are entered into mainly for the purpose of obtaining a tax benefit.
Jotham Lian is the editor of Accountants Daily, the leading source of breaking news, analysis and insight for Australian accounting professionals.
Before joining the team in 2017, Jotham wrote for a range of national mastheads including the Sydney Morning Herald, and Channel NewsAsia.