Federal Parliament

  • On 13 September 2013, the Superannuation (Government Co-contribution for Low Income Earners) Regulations 2004 was registered on the Federal Register of Legislative Instruments. The Regulations were updated to compile the amendments made to the regulations that affected the legislation up to the 7 August 2013; the date that the Regulations commenced.
  • On 17 September 2013, the InvestorDaily reported that, "a spokesperson for Mr Hockey’s office confirmed the area of financial services and superannuation will be overseen by the Treasurer and Assistant Treasurer." The relevant ministers are:
    • Treasurer - The Hon. Joe Hockey MP;
    • Assistant Treasurer - Senator Arthur Sinodinos AO.

 ASIC

  • On 16 September 2013, ASIC released Consultation Paper 216- Advice on self-managed superannuation funds (SMSF): specific disclosure requirements and SMSF costs (CP 216). CP 216, "contains ASIC's proposals to impose specific disclosure obligations on advisers…[which] includes the need to:
    • warn clients that SMSFs do not have access to the compensation arrangements under the Superannuation Industry (Supervision) Act 1993 in the event of theft or fraud; and
    • explain other matters that may influence the client's decision to set up an SMSF."
    • ASIC has outlined that it will release a class order and a regulatory guide in response to CP 216. ASIC is proposing to modify the law, by way of class order, to impose specific disclosure requirements on AFS licensees and their authorised representatives who give personal advice to clients on establishing or switching to an SMSF.             

                     Comments on CP 216 can be made until 11 November 2013.

  • On 17 September 2013, ASIC released a transcript of a speech given by Commissioner Greg Tanzer at the National SMSF Conference 2013.
    • The speech was titled, The regulator's perspective on the regulation of SMSFs and discussed a number of issues, including: 
  • the important role that gatekeepers have to ensure that "only those investors for whom an SMSF is suitable go into the SMSF sector and, in doing so, they are fully informed…[and] that the overall health of the SMSF sector is sound";
  • the introduction of the new, limited Australian financial services licence; and
  • the registration requirements of SMSF auditors under the Stronger Super reform initiatives.

ATO

  • On 16 September 2013, the ATO released the Large Business Bulletin: September 2013. The Bulletin briefly explains how employers with 20 employees or more can start to prepare for the data and e-commerce standard, which requires employers to lodge their superannuation contributions electronically from July 2014.
  • On 18 September 2013, the ATO updated its website to provide information about how superannuation can be divided between spouses when a relationship breaks down, and information on the tax consequences of splitting superannuation.

APRA

  • On 16 September 2013, APRA updated its website to include new frequently asked questions on the reporting framework:
    • General matters:

- FAQ 50: Do the new audit requirements need to be satisfied before the data provided in quarterly reporting forms  be submitted?

  • Financial statements:

- FAQ 51: What should be reported in items 23.1 Defined contribution members' benefits and 23.2 Defined benefit members' benefits on SRF 320.0 for a defined benefit member with both employer and member benefits?

- FAQ 52: On SRF 330.0, how should a life insurance claim payout be reported if it is disbursed together with the deceased member's benefits as a single amount to the deceased member's estate or beneficiary?

- FAQ 53: Does APRA expect SMSF rollovers to be reported on SRF 330.0 despite the SuperStream electronic rollover payment not yet being in effect?

- FAQ 54: How should Kiwi-saver rollovers be reported when these have not been captured previously?

  • Investments reporting:

FAQ 47: When does reporting on SRF 533.0 and SRF 702.0 for select investment options commence?

FAQ 48: How should investment options that hold RSE reserves be reported on SRF 601.0?

FAQ 49: Is further guidance available for RSE licensees reporting equity investments?

  • Demographics:

FAQ 55: What is meant by "direct any portion" in the definition of "MySuper interest as a result of member investment choice"?

  • On 20 September 2013, APRA released Draft Prudential Practice Guide SPG 310- Audit and Related Matters. SPG 310, "sets out APRA’s requirements in relation to the audit for an RSE licensee’s business operations. This PPG aims to assist an RSE licensee in complying with those requirements and, more generally, to outline prudent practices in relation to audit arrangements." On the same date, APRA released a letter explaining that, "the release of SPG 310 represents the final draft PPG from APRA’s review of superannuation-related guidance material to support the implementation of prudential standards and changes to the SIS Act and SIS Regulations."