When you change jobs, you typically begin accumulating super in a new fund. Many people, who change jobs or addresses reasonably often, lose track of their previous super accounts. These accounts become 'lost member accounts' and could end up as unclaimed super and be transferred to the Australian Taxation Office (ATO).
Find out more about how you can prevent your super being transferred to the ATO.
What does 'Lost super' mean?
You can be considered a lost member by being uncontactable or inactive:
Uncontactable - you have never given the fund a contact address or two pieces of mail are returned to GESB as undeliverable, and the fund has not received a contribution or rollover for you within the last 12 months
Inactive - you joined the fund through your employer more than two years ago and the account has had no contributions or roll-ins in the last five years
Lost member accounts can include GESB Super, GESB Super (Retirement Access), West State Super and Retirement Income accounts.
Lost member accounts that comply with the description above are reported by GESB as 'lost' to the ATO which can then assist people in finding their lost super.
When will lost or unclaimed super be transferred to the ATO?
WA State Government legislation requires GESB to transfer to the ATO lost or unclaimed super accounts from GESB Super, GESB Super (Retirement Access), West State Super and Retirement Income. This legislation aligns with Commonwealth requirements for all regulated super funds.
The purpose of this legislation is to reunite members with their super via a central department where the funds can be more easily identified and are not subject to fees. While the ATO holds your money it will earn interest at a rate equivalent to the rate of inflation (CPI).
Visit the ATO website for more information about lost and unclaimed super, including which accounts may be transferred to the ATO.
Transferring West State Super accounts to the ATO
If your West State Super account is transferred to the ATO, your account will be closed and you won't be able to open another one, even if you recommence working in the WA public sector. This is because West State Super is now a closed scheme. It also means that any insurance you may have attached to your West State Super account will cease.
To stop your GESB account being transferred to the ATO, you must demonstrate regular contact with GESB. Examples include receiving regular contributions, logging into Member Online, or calling your Member Services Centre.
For more information call your Member Services Centre on 13 43 72.
Keep track of your GESB account
There are several things you can do now to ensure you never lose track of your GESB account: