Superannuation does not automatically form part of an estate and can alternatively be paid directly from the super fund to a ‘dependant’ of the deceased.

In this context a ‘dependant’ is a spouse, child or person in an interdependent relationship with the deceased.

Binding Nominations

If there is a valid binding nomination completed with the superannuation fund then any death benefit would be paid as directed by this nomination.

Trustee Discretion

If there is no valid binding nomination, then the trustee of the superannuation fund will usually have the power to decide who the death benefit should be paid to, subject to the terms of the Superfund Trust Deed. Potential beneficiaries should therefore notify the superannuation trustee of their interest in receiving the death benefit so that any competing claims can be considered.

The above is true both for a retail superannuation fund and a self managed superannuation fund. The added complication for self managed superannuation funds is that the trustee of the fund is usually someone in the family who may not be best placed to make an independent assessment regarding payment of death benefits, if there are completing claims.

Can we assist you claim a superannuation death benefit or administer a self-managed superannuation fund?

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