My trip to Malta and Italy produced many great memories, but did I really enjoy the experience? As the Nobel Laureate says: “We go on vacations to a very large extent in the service of our remembering self.”
A bill that allows the ATO to merge dormant super accounts with active ones and release super members from compulsory life insurance embedded in enterprise agreements and from exit fees was tabled on 21 June 2018.
SMSF trustees should understand the tax consequences when death benefits include insurance proceeds because it can vary greatly according to circumstances, and these should be planned for in advance.
The way insurance payments are made can have a significant impact on the overall cost of personal cover, and knowing future premiums helps manage the risk of losing insurance when most needed.
Super fund members should review their estate plans and insurance arrangements in light of the new transfer balance cap rules.
Putting money aside to pay for a child’s education requires a serious savings effort, and lack of access to superannuation rules it out as a tax-effective and flexible option. There is an alternative.
Superannuation remains the most tax-effective savings vehicle for most Australians, but the new limits on caps and amounts in pensions will encourage wealthier investors to consider alternatives.
For younger people who are yet to build their superannuation to a decent size, death and TPD insurance cover within super can make a huge difference if they are in need of disability care.
Superannuation’s current tax benefits are far from certain given the government’s need for more revenue. Changes are likely to increase the competitiveness of investment bonds (sometimes called insurance bonds).
Serious illness is something we think will happen to somebody else and insurance, like making a will, is easy to put off. It’s only when the problems start that we realise it’s too late to do anything about it.
Life annuities is a product with theoretical appeal but it does not gather significant market acceptance. These behavioural reasons need to be addressed before substantial increases in sales occur.
Lifetime annuities have some attractive features but remain neglected by most retirees. There are rational reasons for this, which the annuity industry has to overcome if the product is to address more longevity worries.
Life annuities should be beneficial to rational decision-making individuals in retirement, yet in Australia the number of life annuities purchased remains small, albeit with some nascent signs of growth.
Superannuation members have been getting a great deal, but this is clearly not sustainable, and many superannuation funds are finding their insurance premiums rising significantly.