There are a number of changes to our superannuation system looming, which should make things easier for business owners. These changes are known as SuperStream and will come into effect from 1st July 2014.
SuperStream is a new process requiring employers to pay their employees superannuation contributions using the government’s new data standards. All superannuation contributions will need to be made and recorded electronically.
Currently, employers are paying their superannuation guarantee obligations to the nominated funds through a variety of methods – some require a cheque, others a form filled out through the fund, some have an electronic interface or web portal, or some use the banking system.
“This makes it a very complicated and time consuming process for businesses, particularly when they have to deal with a number of different super funds with differing methods of payment’ says Greg Perks, Director of Perks Integrated Business Solutions.
The government’s aim for SuperStream is to simplify the back office of superannuation and make things easier for businesses. “It sets up a standard format. It defines how that information needs to be organised, so whoever receives the data can interpret it in a structured way’ says Greg Perks.
The changes are relatively straightforward for APRA regulated funds as most payroll offices can set this up.
But the process is more difficult for Self Managed Super Fund (SMSF) trustees. SMSF members must provide their employers with the fund ABN, bank account details and electronic service address for receiving data messages about the contributions.
According to Greg Perks “The main task for SMSFs will be to obtain an electronic service address that complies with the data and payment standards.”
The electronic service address is more than just an email address and SMSFs are unlikely to be able to meet the requirement without engaging a service provider. The key requirements of the address are that the system must be able to receive and host data messages from super funds, and translate those messages into a format that people can read. There are also requirements about system certification, operational performance and information security.
For more information about SuperStream and how the changes may affect you call Perks on (08) 8273 9300.
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