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Superannuation - Pensions and death


Important changes to Australia’s superannuation laws in 2007 included the removal of the compulsory cashing of benefits for superannuation fund members at age 65. This made superannuation funds capable of storing wealth for longer than was previously allowed. This and related factors mean that superannuation advisers must not neglect pension planning and superannuation estate planning. This article is intended to help advisers understand pensions, and details the various taxation and superannuation estate planning issues that their pension clients may face.

The article discusses when to commence a pension, the various types of available pensions, when and how to commute, and pension strategies after a review of the tax treatment of superannuation benefits. Case studies are provided illustrating the principles discussed. An Appendix describes the features of the various pensions and commutation conditions in more detail.

Author profile

Thalia Dardamanis CTA
Thalia is a Special Counsel at Bernie O’Sullivan Lawyers. She has been practising in superannuation law and estate planning for approximately 10 years. Thalia is a regular presenter on superannuation and wealth succession topics and has published extensively in these areas. For several years now she has been lecturing the superannuation module of the advanced Chartered Tax Adviser (CTA) program for The Tax Institute. She is currently a member of The Tax Institute’s National Superannuation Technical Committee and is completing her Master of Laws at the University of Melbourne. - Current at 30 June 2015
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