Stapling: What is it, and what do you need to do?

There’s some new rules coming into effect from 1 November for ‘Stapling’ of superfunds to employees, and as an employer there are a few things you may need to do to get ready. But before we get into that, let’s take a look at what “Stapling” actually is.

Put simply, Stapling is an Australian Government superannuation reform that means an existing super account is linked, or ‘stapled’, to an individual employee so that it follows them as they change jobs.

In instances where an employee doesn’t nominate a super account upon starting a new job, the employer will pay their employee’s superannuation contributions into their existing ‘stapled’ fund.

While they’re not big changes, it’s important that you comply from 1 November, which may mean requesting your new employee’s “stapled” fund details directly from the ATO if your employee doesn’t provide these to you themselves.

The whole idea is to stop employees amassing numerous super accounts as they change jobs. Instead, they’ll have one fund follow them, which will help reduce fees overall and lost super balances.

According to QSuper, “if you don’t meet your choice of super fund obligations under these changes, you may have to pay additional penalties or charges on top of the Super Guarantee Charge (SGC). There are instances where employers are deemed to meet the new requirements in respect of contributions made for their employees and you should seek advice to ascertain your obligations”.

So, with all of this in mind, what do you need to be doing right now?

We’ve included 3 tips below from QSuper for you.

  1. To make sure you’re ready to request stapled super fund details, the ATO recommends you check and update the access levels of your authorised representatives in ATO online services. This will also protect your employees’ personal information.

2. Before you can request details of an employee’s stapled super fund, you must have lodged either a:

  • Single Touch Payroll event
  • Tax file number (TFN) declaration.

3. Log in to ATO online services and enter your employee’s details, including:

  • Tax File Number, or an exemption code where an employee cannot provide their TFN
  • Full name, including ‘other given name’ if known
  • Birth date
  • Address (residential or postal), if TFN not given.

Receive an on-screen response in online services and confirmation that the ATO will notify your employee that you have made a stapled super fund request, as well as the fund details that the ATO provided. 

If you need to request stapled super fund details for more than 100 new employees at once, the ATO can provide a bulk request form.

If you’re unsure about your obligations and would like to discuss Stapling further, please do not hesitate to contact us.

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