Whether it’s finally doing that year abroad, taking time to care for a loved one, or going on parental leave, there may come a time when you opt to take a career break.
Though your super might be the last thing on your mind when you’re planning your stint away from the daily grind, it’s important to make sure it will still be working for you while you’re away.
Depending on what kind of break you’re taking, you may or may not be receiving super contributions from your employer. While Qantas Group pays super contributions on your paid parental leave, for example, it doesn’t contribute to your super when you’re on leave without pay.
It’s important to think about these details – after all, every dollar counts in your super. Thanks to the way compound interest works, a few months’ worth of missed contributions now while you’re away could mean tens of thousands of dollars missing from your super when you’re ready to retire.
Before going away, here are some things you may want to consider to help your super keep on track:
Bring forward unused non-concessional contributions
The amount you can contribute to your super each financial year from your after-tax salary is currently capped at $110,000, but a special rule can help you maximise this amount.
If your total superannuation balance is below $1.7 million as of the previous 30 June and you are aged under 67 at any point during the current financial year, you may be able to make up to three years’ worth of after-tax contributions in one year by tapping into your future cap space in advance.
As the annual cap for non-concessional, or after-tax, contributions is currently $110,000, this means you could bring forward your cap from the 2022/23 and 2023/24 financial years to contribute up to $330,000 in one financial year.
The amount you may be able to contribute depends on your total superannuation balance. You learn learn more via the ATO.
You can also check the concessional and non-concessional contributions you’ve made to your Qantas Super account by logging in.
Consider your insurance needs
Depending on the type of break you take from work, there may be a change to your insurance cover in Qantas Super.
If you remain an employee at the Qantas Group taking unpaid leave, and your premiums continue to be paid, your basic cover for death and total and permanent disablement (TPD) will continue.
Any voluntary cover you have will continue.
However, if we don’t receive a contribution or rollover to your account for 16 months, your cover will be cancelled unless you opt-in to keep it. We will get in touch before then to let you know that you need to opt-in to keep your cover.
If your break from work will see you leave employment at the Qantas Group, your basic cover for death and TPD will automatically continue as what’s called fixed dollar basic cover – this means it won’t change with your salary, age, or membership.
Any voluntary cover you have for death only, or death and TPD will also continue.
However, your basic cover for income protection will stop 90 days after the day you leave employment with the Qantas Group.
When making voluntary contributions, remember that caps apply and that your super will be preserved until you reach retirement age. It’s important to think about your ongoing commitments before making a contribution.