Who gets your super when you die?

Our mortality is not a topic anyone likes to think about, but it’s one of those things that we do need to prepare for – as the saying goes: ‘nothing is certain but death and taxes’. 

Unfortunately, one in three people fails to tell their super fund who gets their super when they are no longer around, which can cause their loved ones even more stress at an already difficult time. Writing down your wishes for your super should be a priority – particularly if you have dependants.

Who’s entitled to receive your super?

1.    Your dependants

There’s often confusion about what a ‘dependant’ is - under super law, a dependant is:

  • your spouse (which includes an opposite or same-sex de facto partner)
  • your children (under age 25 or still financially dependent)
  • anyone who is financially dependent on you at the time of your death; and 
  • anyone who has an interdependency relationship with you at the time of your death. 

2.    Your legal personal representative

The only other person who can receive your super is the legal personal representative for your estate. They are usually the Executor of your will or, if you haven’t made a will, the Administrator of your estate. 

What if I want someone who doesn’t qualify as a dependant to receive my super?

You may not have any dependants, or you may wish to nominate someone who doesn’t qualify as a super dependant (such as your siblings or parents). What do you do then?

In this situation, you would make a binding beneficiary nomination and nominate your estate (legal personal representative) on the form. Ensure that your will is up to date and identifies these people, and once your super is paid to your estate it will be distributed to your nominated beneficiaries.

How to nominate

When it comes to who gets your super, the key is to make a binding beneficiary nomination, which lets you decide who receives your super and is binding on the trustee. Alternatively, you can make a non-binding beneficiary nomination, which identifies your preferred beneficiaries, but it’s not binding and will be used as a guide only when distributing your super.

If you’re worried about how your super will be distributed on your death, a binding beneficiary nomination can give you peace of mind. Simply complete the form, have your signature witnessed by 2 people and send it back to us.

If you’re unsure, give Member Services a call on 1800 757 607 and they’ll help you get started.

The information on this page has been issued by Maritime Financial Services Pty Limited (MFS). It contains general information that doesn’t take into account your individual objectives, financial situation or needs. It’s important to consider how appropriate this general information is in relation to your situation before making an investment decision. We recommend that you seek financial advice before making any decisions regarding your super or investments. The information on this page is current at the time of publishing.