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Bring your Aussie Super Home

If you've worked in Australia at any time since 1992 then you'll probably have one or more Australian superannuation schemes that you had to leave behind when you made the wise choice to return to Godzone!

The good news is that you can now bring your Australian superannuation savings back to New Zealand by transferring them into your Fisher Funds TWO KiwiSaver Scheme account.

Why transfer your Australian Super back to NZ?

Transferring your Aussie super back to New Zealand makes sense for several reasons:

  • Easier to keep track of - With your superannuation savings in one account in New Zealand you can see at a glance how much you have accumulated. If you have registered for online access you can view your Fisher Funds TWO KiwiSaver Scheme balance online.
  • Potential fee savings - Many superannuation schemes have fixed fees that are charged regardless of how much money you may have in your account. If you have several schemes with these types of charges then you could benefit by consolidating your savings and only paying one set of fees.
  • Simpler - With multiple superannuation schemes it becomes harder to understand exactly what you are invested in and whether your investments suit your risk profile. The Fisher Funds TWO KiwiSaver Scheme has tools and people to help you choose the right fund, or combination of funds, to suit your individual risk profile.
  • Certainty - If you are planning on retiring in New Zealand you will have the comfort of knowing what your savings are worth in New Zealand dollars. You also won't have to calculate the current exchange rate to work out how much you have saved along the way, and when it comes time to withdraw your balance is already in the currency you will be spending your savings in, giving you more certainty around what you have to see you through your retirement.

Transferring your savings from Australia is optional.

Investments in New Zealand are taxed differently to those in Australia, we suggest you take advice on the tax implications of transferring from your Australian scheme to a KiwiSaver Scheme. There may also be other benefits specific to your Australian super scheme which are not provided by KiwiSaver schemes. If you are unsure of the impact of transferring to the Fisher Funds TWO KiwiSaver Scheme we suggest you seek personalised financial advice.

What happens with any funds I transfer?

The main rules from the regime you transfer from will continue to apply to your funds. For example the retirement age from your Aussie Super will apply to the funds you transfer to New Zealand and vice versa. The table below highlights the main differences between your Aussie Super Scheme and KiwiSaver Scheme.

Australian funds transferred to New Zealand: New Zealand KiwiSaver funds transferred to Australia:
May be accessed from age 60 if the individual has satisfied the Australian definition of retirement at that age. May not be accessed until the New Zealand age of retirement (65 years).
May not be withdrawn for the purchase of a first home. May not be transferred into Australian self-managed superannuation funds.
May not be transferred to a third country. May not be transferred to a third country.

Source: Inland Revenue, correct as at 17 July 2013

There are a number of important things you should consider before making the decision to initiate the transfer. Download our Important Information Sheet for details.

How do I find my Aussie superannuation scheme(s)?

If you've lost track of your Australian super scheme (or schemes) you certainly aren't alone. At last count it was estimated that over A$5 billion of unclaimed Australian super money belongs to New Zealanders. To find out if any of that belongs to you, visit the super seeker section of the Australian Taxation Office website. You'll need your Australian Tax File Number (TFN) to search this site.

If you don't know your TFN then you can fill in the Searching for lost super form and send it back to the Australian Taxation Office PO Box 3578 ALBURY NSW 2640.

How do I transfer my funds?

If you would like to transfer your Australian Super Scheme savings to your Fisher Funds TWO KiwiSaver Scheme account please download and complete our transfer form.

Our experience so far indicates that it may take some time for the Australian Schemes to process your transfer. Rest assured we will keep you up-to-date throughout the entire process.

Can I transfer my KiwiSaver savings to Australia?

Yes, you can.

If you permanently emigrate to Australia you can transfer your retirement savings to an Australian complying superannuation scheme regulated by the Australian Prudential Regulation Authority (APRA). A list of complying schemes can be found here.

Are there any restrictions or special rules that apply?

There are several rules and regulations that have been agreed that you should be aware of:

  • You are no longer able to withdraw your retirement savings in cash one year after permanently migrating, however you can transfer them whenever you want (you won't have to wait for 12 months) and the $1,000 kick-start and any KiwiSaver member tax credits will be transferred over.
  • You will be able to access your KiwiSaver account at the age of entitlement to New Zealand superannuation. Currently this is at 65 years of age or being in KiwiSaver for 5 years, whichever is later. Any earnings on these KiwiSaver investment as well as contributions made while in Australia will be subject to all Australian rules regarding access to funds.
  • You will not be able to transfer any transferred New Zealand funds into Australian self-managed superannuation funds, nor can they be transferred to a third country.
  • Any transfers of retirement savings will be subject to Australia's rules regarding the taxation of retirement savings contributions greater than $150,000 per annum. This is known as the non-concessional contributions cap.

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Australian Super Transfer

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