Contribution limits

There are limits on the amount of pre and post-tax contributions caps (also known as concessional and non-concessional contributions) you can make to your account before the end of the financial year.   If you exceed these caps you may have to pay extra tax.

Limits on pre-tax contributions

The pre-tax contributions cap for the 2018/19 financial year is:

  • $25,000 for all ages

If you’ve supplied your super fund with your Tax File Number (TFN), any pre-tax contributions will be taxed as follows:

  • under the cap– 15%
  • over the cap - taxed at your marginal tax rate plus an excess contributions charge. May be paid ‘out of your pocket’ to the ATO or you may instruct TelstraSuper to release funds from your account to meet the liability.

Contributions included in the pre-tax cap

  • employer Superannuation Guarantee (SG) contributions
  • salary sacrifice contributions
  • pre-tax contributions to defined benefit arrangements
  • pre-tax contributions made to your account and split to your spouse under the Contribution Splitting rules
  • the taxable component of a directed termination payment (or the total of directed termination payments plus any transitional eligible termination payments) in excess of $1 million
  • insurance premiums paid directly by your employer
  • all your pre-tax contributions to all your super funds.

If you don’t supply your TFN to your super fund, all pre-tax contributions will be taxed at the top marginal rate (plus Medicare levy). Caps include any contributions made to TelstraSuper and any other super funds you may be contributing to.

Catch-up pre-tax contributions 

From 1 July 2018, eligible members who contribute less than the cap will be able to ‘carry-forward’ any unused amounts for up to five years. This may allow you to make additional pre-tax contributions that would have otherwise exceeded the cap. 

Find out more about catch-up contributions 

Limits on post-tax contributions

The post-tax contributions cap for the current financial year is $100,000 pa per person provided that your total super balance is under $1.6 million. If your balance is over $1.6 million you can not make any post-tax contributions into your super account. 

If you’ve supplied TelstraSuper with your TFN, any post-tax contributions will be taxed as follows:

  • under the limits – no tax
  • over the limits – taxed at the highest marginal tax rate. 

Post-tax contributions are not accepted if you haven’t supplied your TFN to your super fund.

Contributions included in the post-tax cap

  • post-tax contributions you make to your super
  • post-tax contributions your spouse makes to your account
  • pre-tax contributions in excess of the pre-tax contributions cap
  • transfers from overseas funds.

If you’re aged under 65 years on 1 July of the financial year, you’ll be able to bring forward the next two years of post-tax contributions and make a lump sum contribution of $300,000 in one financial year. For instance, if you make a $300,000 contribution during the 2017/2018 financial year, you won't be allowed to make any further post-tax contributions until the 2020/2021 financial year.

If you’re aged 65 years or over you cannot bring forward contributions.

Caps include any contributions made to TelstraSuper and any other super funds you may be contributing to. The bring-forward rule is triggered when the post-tax contribution limit is exceeded in a financial year. 

When you can make super contributions

Your eligibility to make contributions is based on your age and work status. Under age 65, all contribution can be made into super. The table below details which contributions can be made into the fund and under which conditions they can be made. 

Work test

Over age 65 there may be a requirement to meet a work test which means you have worked for at least 40 hours within a period of not more than 30 consecutive days in the financial year in which the contribution was made. 

    Under age 65 Over age 65 but under age 70 Over age 70 but under age 75 Age 75 and over
Mandated employer contributions Superannuation Guarantee (SG) and contributions made under an award or industrial agreement Yes Yes Yes Yes
Voluntary employer contributions  All employer contributions other than mandated employer contributions including salary Yes  Yes, but subject to work test Yes, but subject to work test No, unless 28 day rule applies*
 Member contributions Contributions made on an after-tax basis including transfers from an overseas fund Yes Yes, but subject to work test Yes, but subject to work test No, unless 28 day rule applies*
 Spouse contributions Eligible spouse contributions and contributions received from a spouse under contribution splitting rules  Yes Yes, but subject to work test No No
 Government co-contributions  Co-contribution scheme Yes Yes No No
*you may contribute if you meet the work test rule above and the contribution is received by the fund within 28 days after the end of the month in which you turn 75.  

Pension phase - transfer balance cap

A transfer balance cap of $1.6 million applies to how much you can transfer from super into a tax-free income stream. If you exceed the cap you will have to remove the excess from your retirement phase income streams and pay tax on the notional earnings. This cap includes balances from all super accounts held in an individuals name. 

If your account balance is above this threshold various options are available to you including:

moving your super back into the accumulation phase, if you currently have an income stream; or 

keeping your super in the accumulation phase, if you don’t have an income stream.

Tax for high-income earners

 If your taxable income is higher than $250,000 a year, you’ll pay 30% tax on your pre-tax contributions.  

If your income is less than $250,000 a year but when you add in pre- tax contributions it’s above $250,000, the 30% tax rate will apply to that part of your pre -tax contributions that are over $250,000. For example, if your income is $230,000 and your pre -tax contributions are $25,000, the 30% tax rate only applies on the $5,000.

Need help making contributions?

At TelstraSuper we’re here to help you build a secure financial future. If you’d like to discuss your options for making contributions or if you have any other queries relating to your account contact us on 1300 033 166 or fill in our online contact form. 

Online contact form