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Superannuation refund

Info for temporary residents

If you are a temporary resident in Australia, and you have worked while you were here, then it’s possible that your boss paid some money into a superannuation (super) account for you. It’s called the Superannuation Guarantee, and it is compulsory under Australian law.

Normally, Australian employees can’t access their super until they retire.

However if you are in Australia on a temporary work visa, such as a working holiday visa, then you can usually claim that super as a refund after you leave, and your temporary visa has expired.

You can generally claim back your superannuation refund online by applying for a Departing Australia super payment (DASP) through the Australian Taxation Office (ATO).

You should have your Australian Tax File Number (TFN) at hand and, if possible, the name and ABN of any superannuation funds your employer or employers may have paid your super into.

Are you from New Zealand?

If you're returning to New Zealand, special rules apply to accessing your Australian superannuation.

Unlike other temporary residents who leave Australia, you won’t be able to access your super early (except under certain conditions), however you will generally be able to transfer your super to a KiwiSaver scheme as long as your Australian super is held in an APRA approved super fund and you can provide proof of residence in New Zealand.

If you’re moving to Australia from New Zealand, you can apply to have the entire balance of super in your KiwiSaver scheme transferred to an approved super fund in Australia. Naturally, all the usual rules about accessing your super will apply, and it’s always wise to choose an Australian fund that has low fees, has a solid performance history and is run only to benefit its members.

Not sure how to claim? Or where your super is?

Don’t worry. The Australian superannuation system is set up so that the ATO can usually find your super for you, especially if you have your TFN.

If you’re not sure of the fund(s) that an employer paid your super contributions into, fill in as much detail online as you can, and submit your form. They’ll do the rest.

Even if you don’t know your TFN, it’s still possible for the ATO and refund sites to find your super, but it might take a bit longer.

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