Contribution caps

There are limits on how much money you can put into super each year without penalty. These are called ‘contribution caps’.

Two types of contributions

There are two types of super contributions:

  • concessional (before tax)
  • non-concessional (after tax)
Concessional (before tax) contributions

Roughly speaking, concessional contributions include:

  • all employer contributions (including salary sacrifice)
  • personal contributions you can claim a tax deduction for

For more detailed information, email us at or call us on 1800 005 166.

Non-concessional (after tax) contributions

Broadly, non-concessional contributions include:

  • personal member contributions (where you can’t claim a tax deduction)
  • spouse contributions
  • any excess concessional contributions. 

For more detailed information read our How super works fact sheet, email us at or call us on 1800 005 166.

Two types of caps

Concessional (before tax) contribution cap

The concessional contribution cap is the limit that applies to before-tax contributions made to your super in a financial year before extra tax kicks in. For the 2017-18 year, it is $25,000 each year, regardless of your age. 

Non-concessional (after tax) contribution cap

The non-concessional contribution cap is $100,000 for 2017–18.

A hot tip on non-concessional contributions

If you’re under 65 and have less than $1.6 million in your super account at the end of 30 June in the previous financial year, you can use the ‘bring forward rule’ and make after-tax contributions of up to three times the annual non-concessional cap in a single year without needing to pay extra tax.

Transitional arrangements apply for members who have made after-tax contributions in the 2015-16 or 2016-17 financial years, but haven’t fully used their ‘bring forward rule’ before 1 July 2017.

What if you exceed the caps?

The government taxes contributions above the cap at your marginal rate. But you’re allowed to withdraw any excess concessional contributions from your super account.

If you go over a contribution cap, you’ll receive an excess contributions tax assessment from the ATO. You’ll have to pay the excess tax yourself and/or by drawing on your super.

It’s important to realise that any concessional contributions over the cap will also count towards your non-concessional contributions cap.

Want more information on contribution caps?

See our How super works fact sheet. 

Next steps

Did you know that when you make extra payments it can make a big difference to your super balance? Should you be making before or after-tax contributions? Check with our fast, easy Contributions calculator.