Why join PS Superannuants?

What will you get for your money?

A- Benefits for individual members

There are 10 monthly meetings held from February to November inclusive. At these meetings, the President outlines the most recent business of the Association and there is then a guest speaker. The November meeting is extended after the guest speaker has finished to include afternoon refreshments.

The Association publishes a highly regarded newsletter, The Superannuant, three times a year. This is posted to the homes of members. As an alternative to posting members can request electronic delivery of The Superannuant.

While the Association cannot give members financial advice it can, and does, assists members with their problems involving superannuation. This assistance typically involves providing information and/or steering people towards the right questions to ask of relevant authorities.

B- Benefits for scheme members collectively

i. Members of the State Pension Scheme and Police Pension Scheme
It is common for members of these defined benefit pension schemes to express the view that their retirement benefit is not subject to change because everything about it is written down in the Superannuation Act 1988 or the Police Superannuation Act 1990. The major flaws in this thinking are that:
a) an Act is subject to interpretation, and b) an Act can be changed in ways that might not be welcomed by members.

There is also the possibility that changes which would lead to improvements are not made when they could be. PS Superannuants is the only organisation likely to provide effective representation for members when any question of interpretation of, or changes to the abovementioned Superannuation Acts arise. So we advise all pension fund members to remember that: the superannuation benefit, on which a pension scheme member relies for his/her entire lifetime, is vulnerable to legislative change and/or interpretation.

This is an excellent reason why every member of the pension scheme should consider joining PS Superannuants. There is no suggestion being made here that a Government would entertain legislative changes which were not in the best interests of members{grin}, only that it is a matter of simple prudence for members to be well organised and ready to assess whatever changes might be proposed.

ii. Members of the State Lump Sum Scheme
This, like the pension scheme, is a defined benefit scheme with the entitlement set out in legislation (the Superannuation Act 1988). Consequently, all the reasons set out above for why pension scheme members should consider joining PS Superannuants apply to members of the Lump Sum Scheme.

iii. Members of the Southern State Superannuation (SSS) scheme
The SSS is an accumulation scheme or defined contribution scheme. The benefit paid is not defined in legislation but is the accumulation of contributions made by the member, contributions made by the employer and the investment earnings of those contributions net of administration expenses and the tax payable on receipt of the benefit.

However, many things other than the benefit are set out in legislation. For example, SSS members do not have choice of fund and the low income members are not eligible for the Federal Government’s Low Income Superannuation Contribution. On the other hand SSS members can make contributions above the Federal Government’s annual contribution caps.

For members of both the Lump Sum Scheme and the SSS membership of PS Superannuants provides an opportunity to become part of an organisation through which they will be able to lobby the state government for improvements in their schemes and the federal government on more general retirement income matters.