An individual or company conducting business in Australia needs
to consider its obligations to pay superannuation contributions in
respect of its Australian employees.
Compulsory contribution legislation requires an employer to:
pay superannuation for its eligible employees. An employee is
eligible if they are aged between 18 and 69 (both inclusive), are
paid at least the prescribed amount (currently A$450 (before tax)
in a calendar month) and work full-time, part-time or on a casual
contribute to the correct superannuation funds; and
pay contributions by the cut off date on a quarterly basis
(being no more than 28 days after the end of the quarter).
The minimum superannuation amount payable is 9% of each eligible
employee's earnings base (although the Federal Government has
committed to raising this rate from July 2013). Employees can
direct their employer to contribute more than the statutory minimum
contribution to their superannuation fund.
An employer may also have to pay superannuation for employees
who are visiting Australia on an eligible temporary resident
Most employees are entitled to select their own superannuation
fund, unless they are employed under certain state awards,
industrial agreements or workplace agreements or they are in a
particular type of defined benefit fund. Employer-nominated funds
are also required to offer minimum life insurance death cover to
The content of this article is intended to provide a general
guide to the subject matter. Specialist advice should be sought
about your specific circumstances.
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Long experience representing many of Australia's leading employers has taught us that in employment litigation the identity of an employee's representative is a major factor in how employee litigation runs.
Australian employees receive certain entitlements (such as annual leave and superannuation) where contractors do not.
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