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COVID-19 accessing your super

Steps to take before withdrawing your super early

Page reading time: 4 minutes

If you're affected by the COVID-19 pandemic, you may be eligible to access up to $10,000 of your super until 31 December 2020. 

Follow these steps before you decide to withdraw any super.

1. Check you are eligible to access your super early

2. Know all your financial assistance options

3. Check your current super balance

4. Consider impacts on your insurance

5. Estimate the impact on your retirement savings

6. Make a plan for the months ahead

7. Find additional help if you need it

1. Check you are eligible to access your super early

You can apply to access your super if you meet one or more of the following requirements:

If you meet these requirements and decide to withdraw super, you won't pay tax on super you withdraw. It won't affect Centrelink or Veterans’ Affairs payments.

If you decide to withdraw some of your super

People who are eligible will be able to apply online at my.gov.au to access up to $10,000 of their super  until 31 December 2020.

The only way to apply to withdraw your super if you are eligible is through my.gov.au. It is free to apply.

It could take up to 14 days to receive your super if there are a large number of applications.

Protect your personal information. Don’t share your myGov account details with anyone.

2. Know all your financial assistance options

Before you withdraw super, access Government assistance and talk to your bank or lender about how they can help.

Government payments

As part of the COVID-19 response, there are specific Government payments to help you:

Find out more about available COVID-19 financial assistance.

Contact your bank's financial hardship team

All banks and lenders have financial hardship teams ready to help customers in tough times.

You may be able change the terms of your loan, or temporarily pause or reduce your repayments for 6 months.

Contact your bank or lender to request a hardship variation.

3. Check your current super balance

Your super balance shown through the myGov service may be as at 30 June 2019. Your super balance may have changed since then, so check your balance with your super fund.

Super is a long-term investment that typically rides the ups and downs of the market over your working life.

You may need to withdraw some of your super now, but be aware that any money withdrawn and spent now is money you won’t have invested for the future.

4. Consider impacts on your insurance

More than 70% of Australians that have life insurance hold it through super.

If your super balance falls to zero or is too low you may lose your life and income protection cover.

5. Estimate the impact on your retirement savings

Your super is your retirement savings. Money you take out today will be money you don’t have in retirement.

To understand more about your personal income in retirement, use the retirement planner.

Consider what impact withdrawing super today will have on your retirement.

Disclaimers

  • This is a model, not a prediction.
  • The results from this estimator are based on limited information provided by you and assumptions made about the future. The results are estimates only and are not guaranteed.
  • Do not rely solely on this estimator to make decisions about your superannuation, there are other factors to take into account. You may wish to get advice from a licensed financial adviser.
  • The estimator works for accumulation funds only. It will not work for defined benefit funds.

Assumptions

The estimates provided use the assumptions and default values from the Superannuation Calculator based on an income of $50,000.

  • The estimates provided are shown in today's dollars, which means they are adjusted for inflation by 4.0% p.a. (2.5% p.a. due to the rising cost of living [CPI inflation] and a further 1.5% p.a. for the cost of rising community living standards).
  • Investment returns are defaulted to an assumed rate of investment return before tax and fees of 7.5% p.a.
  • Investment fees are assumed to be 0.85% p.a.
  • Assumed tax on earnings is 7.0%.

6. Make a plan for the months ahead

If you do withdraw some of your super, make a plan for how it can support you over the next 6 months.

You can use the money to build an emergency fund. This will provide a financial safety net to cover any unexpected expenses or future changes to your income. 

7. Find additional help if you need it

If you need more financial guidance

Speak to a financial adviser or your super fund.

Make an appointment to speak to a financial counsellor.

Speak to a Financial Information Service Officer for free confidential, financial information.

If you need emergency help now

Find urgent help if you're in crisis and need assistance with food, housing and bills.

COVID-19 news and updates

For the latest coronavirus news, updates and advice from government agencies across Australia, visit australia.gov.au