Contributing members to SASS are generally eligible for a retirement benefit on leaving employment from age 58 onwards.
However, members who transferred into SASS when their original scheme closed may be eligible for a retirement benefit on leaving employment from age 55. To check your eligible retirement age, see your SASS Annual Benefit Statement.
It is important to note that your ability to access your full retirement benefit is governed by your preservation age.
What will your retirement benefit be worth?
If you transferred into SASS from an older State Super closed scheme you may be entitled to benefits that are calculated differently from the standard SASS benefit detailed below. Your Annual Benefit Statement includes details of any conditions applying to you.
The SASS plus State Authorities Non-contributory Superannuation (SANCS) retirement benefit payable is made up of:
- the full balance of your personal account in SASS
- the employer-financed benefit of 2.5%1 of your final average salary for each accrued benefit point, less 15% contribution tax for each year of membership from 1 July 1988
- the SANCS basic benefit of 3% of your final average salary for each year of membership from 1 April 1988, less 15% contribution tax for each year of membership from 1 July 1988
- the full balance of your Additional Employer Contribution (AEC) account if applicable to you (refer to you Annual Benefit Statement)
- the full balance of your Commonwealth Government co-contribution and low income super tax offset (LISTO) account if applicable to you (refer to your Annual Benefit Statement)
- any surcharge tax debt, no Tax File Number (TFN) debt, contribution arrears and interest debt, or other amounts previously paid to you on compassionate grounds or financial hardship (if applicable).
1This is approximately 2.12% after the reduction for the tax on employer contributions payable by the Fund since 1 July 1988. Employer-financed benefits attributable to membership prior to 1 July 1988 do not attract contributions tax.
To find out how to calculate your retirement benefit, refer to the following retirement benefit example.
Contributions and benefits from age 65 to 70
Once you reach age 65 you can choose to exit from the scheme, even if you are still working. You can choose to receive the payment of your accrued benefit immediately, or leave it deferred within the scheme (as a lump sum only) and have it paid to you at a later date.
The deferred lump sum is adjusted for investment earnings and management charges up to the date of payment.
If you exit your current scheme before retirement, your employer will still be required under Commonwealth legislation to pay Superannuation Guarantee (SG) contributions to a scheme on your behalf.
Once you reach age 70, the scheme can no longer accept contributions and you will cease to accrue benefits.
Benefit payment options
You can choose to receive all of your retirement benefit at any time after you reach age 58, providing you resign from the NSW Public sector and meet a Commonwealth condition of release. You will need to complete SASS Form 412: Application for payment of a SASS benefit and send it to Mercer (contact information can be found on the form). This form allows you to choose whether you:
- receive some or all of your benefit in cash (where eligible) and roll over any balance to another approved superannuation fund
- roll over all of your benefit to another approved superannuation fund until you reach age 60, at which time the entire benefit becomes tax-free.