After some massive changes in recent budgets, there was not much in the budget regarding super but there were a few important enhancements.
Increase in maximum number of Members in a Self Managed Super Fund (SMSF)
Up until now SMSF's have been limited to four members. From 1/7/19 it is proposed to increase this limit to six. This will enable larger family groups to be included in SMSF's and potentially provide more options in regards to funding and retaining investments and working around the Labor government's proposed franking credit restrictions. Care will need to be taken though and proper advice obtained as adding additional members to your Fund creates responsibilities and rights for new members that can potentially give control of investment or death benefit distribution decisions to unintended parties.
Relaxation of SMSF Audit Requirements
From 1/7/19 it is proposed that for Funds with good compliance and lodgement history, that SMSF audits will only be required once every three years instead of the current annual requirement. This should reduce the compliance costs of affected SMSFs.
One more year of Contributions
From 1/7/19, people aged between 65 and 74, who have less than $300,000 in super may be eligible to make voluntary super contributions in the first year after they stop meeting the work test (40 hours in a 30 day period). For all other people aged 65-74 the requirement to meet the work test before making voluntary super contributions remains.
Retirement Income Strategy
While the audit compliance burden for SMSF's has been relieved, a new compliance burden is to be added. SMSF trustees will be required to formulate a retirement income strategy for their members. No start date has been set for this measure.