SMSF, How to Establish a Self-Managed Super Fund in Sydney, Australia

Self-managed superannuation funds (SMSF), also known as Do-It-Yourself superannuation fund is a type of fund has its members as its trustees, providing you greater autonomy over the investment options and decisions. The convention superannuation options don’t offer as much investment choices as the self-managed ones did. You can decide how and where to invest your funds.

The sole purpose of the super fund is to provide benefits for your retirement. There are many benefits to set up and running your own super fund, but there are also conditions to be met and restrictions to abide by to establishing the fund. If these conditions are violated, the super fund can become non-complaint and liable to penalties.

Setting Up a SMSF in Australia

There are specific and well-defined conditions that need to be met and steps to be taken to establish a SMSF. The essential six steps to follow include:

1. Establish a self-managed super fund trust deed.
2. Appoint trustees of the fund. All trustees are required to be members. You can appoint up to four trustees.
3. Become a regulated fund.
4. Register your details with the Australian Tax Office (ATO).
5. Establish a bank account for the fund.
6. Establish an investment strategy for the super fund.

Establish a Super Fund Trust Deed

A trust deed is a legal document that defines the rules for setting up and running your self-managed superannuation fund. Combined with the super laws, they constitute for the fund’s governing rules and details, such as:

• Powers, responsibilities and duties of the fund’s release,
• Rights of the members,
• Scope of the process of the super fund,
• Contributions procedure,
• Requirements for payment of benefits, and
• Process for winding up the fund.

Members & Trustees of the SMSF

The first step to establishing a SMSF in Australia, you need to ensure that the following conditions are met, as per super laws.

• There should be four or fewer member,
• Each member has to be a trustee and each trustee has to be a member,
• No member can be an employee of another member, but they can be related,
• No trustee can receive payment for their services or duties as a trustee.

Regulated Resident Fund

In order to comply with the super fund laws and receive tax concessions, your SMSF needs to be a resident-regulated super fund at all times during the income year. It means that your fund must meet the definition of an ‘Australian Superannuation Fund’ for tax purposes. It your fund is a non-compliant, its assets and income are taxed at the highest marginal tax rate.

Registering with ATO

Once the self-managed super fund is legally established by devising the trust deed, setting assets aside for the benefits and signing of a trustee declaration, you need to register with Australian Taxation Office. The Australian Taxation Office is a regulator of the super funds and helps safeguard the retirement income system by ensuring that the fund is setup according to the rules described in the super and tax legislation.check this out!

Opening a Bank Account

The bank account should be open in your self-managed super fund’s name and not your or any other entity’s name. The bank account allows to:

• Manage the fund’s operations,
• Accept cash contributions and rollovers of benefits,
• Deposit earnings on fund investment.
You don’t need to open a separate bank account for each member, but you must maintain separate record of their entitlement, including:
• Contributions made on the members’ behalf,
• Any fund investment earning allocated to the members and
• Payment of any super benefits.

Prepare an Investment Strategy

Before you can make an investment with your fund, you must prepare an investment strategy that describes how you plan to achieve the investment objectives. It provides the trustees with a framework for making investment decisions to increase member retirement benefits.

When preparing the investment strategy for your SMSF, consider:

Super Fund

• Diversification,
• Associated risk and likely return,
• Liquidity of fund’s assets,
• Fund’s ability to pay retirement benefits and incur costs,
• Need for insurance cover for members, and
• Members’ needs and circumstances.

These guidelines and conditions are set up to ensure that the fund is established according to the super laws and tax laws so that your fund is complaint and do not face any penalties. As long as you establish your fund correctly, it can be very beneficial for your retirement. You can visit smsfselfmanagedsuperfund.com.au for more details.

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