A spouse super contribution involves making a contribution to a spouse’s super fund to build their retirement savings. Typically this involves the working spouse making a super contribution to the low income earning or non-working spouse’s super fund. A spouse can be of the same or opposite sex and can include de-facto relationships.

The benefits of this strategy include:

  • Claiming a tax offset (tax refund) for contributions made on behalf of a low income earning or non-working spouse.
  • Grow the super balance of a spouse who has little or no super and grow the couple’s joint retirement savings.
  • Accumulate wealth faster as earnings within super are generally taxed at lower rates than investments outside super.

The maximum tax offset claimable is $540. This is only available if the low income earning spouse’s taxable income is less than $10,800 and $3,000 of non-deductible super contributions have been made to their super fund. The tax offset decreases as the spouse’s taxable income exceeds $10,800 and cuts off once their income is $13,800 or more.

Additional conditions required to claim the tax offset include:

  • The spouse receiving the super contributions must be either under 65 years of age, or less than 69 and pass the work test.
  • Both spouses must be Australian tax residents and not living separately and apart on a permanent basis.

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