Impacts of unpaid super entitlements significant for consumers seeking insurance access

5 December 2016
Revelations that almost one third of Australian workers are not being paid proper superannuation entitlements raises serious questions about the impacts of unpaid contributions on people’s ability to access insurance benefits through their superannuation, Maurice Blackburn Lawyers said today.

The figures were released today in a joint Industry Super Australia and Cbus report that analysed ATO and ABS data in looking at the behaviour of employers seeking to avoid making compulsory superannuation payments.

Maurice Blackburn Principal Peter Koutsoukis said there were many instances where people’s rights to make a total or permanent disability (TPD) claim through superannuation had been impacted because their employer had not been making the correct superannuation contributions on behalf of their employees.

“Sadly this is a scenario we see too often, where someone believes they have TPD insurance through their super, only to find out when it’s too late that their employer has not been paying the proper contributions, sometimes for a number of years,” Mr Koutsoukis said.

“This leaves people at a major disadvantage in seeking to access insurance they are entitled to, when they are already in a stressful situation dealing with a significant injury or illness.

“The findings of today’s report should serve as a wake-up call to all employers and government that not meeting your obligations when it comes to paying employees’ super contributions is unacceptable and cannot be allowed to continue.

“We support the recommendations made today for better reporting and compliance on paying contributions and retaining tough penalties for employers who fail to meet this obligation.

“We would also urge Government to ensure proper resourcing of the ATO to help recover unpaid super, as well as supporting the recommendation that proper systems and protections are in place to likewise assist super funds to also play a greater role in helping to recover missing entitlements,” he said