Most people have 'preserved' super. That is, we ‘preserve’ your savings for you until you reach the minimum age set by law.
The minimum age is called your 'preservation age'. Your preservation age can range from 55 to 60 depending on when you were born.
This table shows you when you will reach preservation age.
|Date of birth||Preservation age|
|Before 1 July 1960||55|
|1 July 1960 - 30 June 1961||56|
|1 July 1961 - 30 June 1962||57|
|1 July 1962 - 30 June 1963||58|
|1 July 1963 - 30 June 1964||59|
|After 30 June 1964||60|
When you reach preservation age, you can access your super as long as you are permanently retired, have reached age 65, or changed jobs since turning 60.
If you haven't permanently retired, you still may be able to access part of your super via a transition to retirement strategy.
This is super you may be able to access before your preservation age under certain conditions, such as leaving your employer.
Just a few people have super which is 'unrestricted non-preserved'. If you have this, you can withdraw it at any time.
Nasty penalties apply if you illegally access your super early.
There are special circumstances where you can legally access your super savings early.
Some of these are:
severe financial hardship
certain compassionate grounds
a terminal medical condition
permanent or temporary disablement
if your balance is under $200.
The transition to retirement rules let you access your super while you’re still working so you can either boost your super or work fewer hours without reducing your take-home pay.
Four quick questions:
Have you reached your preservation age?
Are you still working?
Do you have some super savings?
Do you want to either work fewer hours for the same pay or boost your super without reducing your take home pay?
If you answered 'yes' to all four questions, you are likely eligible for a transition to retirement strategy.
Find out more about transition to retirement.
Get advice from a financial expert.