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SuperStream - Please Read if You are an Employer


What is SuperStream?

SuperStream is a government reform aimed at improving the efficiency of the superannuation system. Under this new reform, employers must make and report super contributions electronically.

The contribution data is sent electronically in a message format to the fund and the contribution payment is sent electronically through the banking system.

What is the Implementation Date?

As of 1 July 2015, SuperStream is mandatory for all employers with more than 19 employees making super contributions.

From 1 July 2015 small employers (with 19 or fewer employees) should start making contributions using SuperStream, with 30 June 2016 being the cut-off date for compliance, after which penalties may apply.

What are my options for meeting SuperStream?

Employers can meet SuperStream requirements by either using :
- A software solution that conforms to SuperStream or
- A service provider who can arrange SuperStream compliance on your behalf

Your options may include
- Upgrading your payroll software – For example MYOB
- Using an Outsourced Payroll or Other Service Providers – For example ADP etc
- Using a commercial clearing house
(For employers with 19 or fewer employees, there is a free clearing house option available: Small Business Superannuation Clearing House)
- Using your Default Fund – Example Australian Super, Super Choice etc.

Some of these providers mentioned above may charge a fee for organising and maintaining this service on your behalf.

Do I need to collect additional information to make contributions using SuperStream?

Yes. To support contributions being made using Super Stream standard employers will need to collect and store additional information about the employee's funds as listed below:  

 New information required  Fund type
 Fund's ABN   All funds
 Unique superannuation identifier (USI)
 APRA-regulated funds only
 Bank account details
 All funds
 Electronic service address
 SMSFs
 Employee tax file number (TFN)
 All funds

 

Free Service: Small Business Superannuation Clearing House

The Small business superannuation clearing house is a free online super payment service run by the ATO which is available for small employers (i.e. under 19 employees).  The clearing house lets you pay your super contributions in one transaction to a single location. It is designed to make the payment process easier, reducing red tape and compliance costs. To set up for this service, you will need to register your employees super fund details, and through the clearing house they will distribute the contributions to the various funds.

As this is a free service for small employers, the eligibility to use the service is monitored each time you use the service.

The super guarantee contributions are counted as being paid on the date the clearing house accepts them and you have 21 days to pass an employee's choice of fund on to the clearing house.

Can I still continue to make contributions using cheques?

Funds are investing significantly in systems for automating the reconciliation process and speeding up the allocation of members money to the right account. Cheques are a barrier to payments being processed efficiently and reliably.  If you continue to send cheques, you will not be compliant with Super Stream and may face penalties.

If you are unable to handle electronic payments yourself, you may engage an agent such as a clearing house or payroll bureau who can accept cheque payments and who will then transact electronically using Super Stream on your behalf. 

What happens if the Employer is not ready to use Super Stream by the required implementation dates?

The ATO will consider all genuine attempts to comply with the new reforms provided you are able to show efforts to get ready.

Additional Information Available

Below are links to the ATO websites providing some further details on super stream and also some video clips on how it works:

• Employer FAQ
• Video Clips


As every business is different, you may wish to start considering your options now to ensure you are compliant before 30 June 2016. If you require any assistance with the above please do not hesitate to contact Thorntons.
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