super tips if you're taking parental leave

Growing your family is an exciting time, but there’s also lots to think about. Your financial future is something you should consider when you’re preparing for a new arrival or heading off on parental leave.



5 strategies to consider if you're taking parental leave





combine your super


If you’re already on parental leave or you’re about to start, one small but significant step you can take is to combine your super accounts. Combining your super means you’ll stop paying multiple fees and insurance fees across multiple super accounts. 

Your super is your money. Just like a savings account, the more that’s in it – the more it can earn. That’s why it’s important to keep all your super together, in one happy place.

Combine online – it’s easy

Find other super you have and easily combine into your HESTA account. You just need to log in to your account and go to the ‘Combine’ tab. It only takes a few minutes. Make sure you have your identification details handy.



take advantage of fee-free insurance cover

We get the impact parental leave can have on your super. That’s why, as a HESTA member, you have access to our fee-free insurance cover while you’re on parental leave. That means your insurance cover continues even while you’re away from work – and you won’t pay a cent in insurance fees from your super. 

It’s our way of helping to keep your growing family safe and your super where it belongs.

You can get fee-free insurance cover during parental leave if: 

  • you’re employed, and 
  • your parental leave is approved by your employer, and 
  • your insurance cover is current.

Your employer will need to tell us when you start your parental leave by completing the Notification of parental leave form (pdf). We suggest organising this about three months before your due date. Then we’ll swing into action and put your insurance fees on hold for up to 12 months.




set up spouse contributions


Parental leave is an important time for you and your family, but it also means taking time out of the workforce. This can have an impact on how much super you accumulate, and that means less money when you retire. That’s where the spouse contributions tax offset can come in handy. 

Your spouse or partner could add a bit extra to your super while you’re looking after your new addition. On top of boosting your balance, your partner may get a tax offset that could benefit both of you.  

If your income is less than $37,000 per year, your partner can make after-tax contributions to your super and claim an 18% tax offset on up to $3,000. That means the maximum offset is $540. 

And you get regular contributions into your account, which, over time, grows with investment returns - all adding up to a higher super balance in retirement. It’s a win-win.



contribution splitting

If your partner’s still working while you’re on parental leave, they may be able to pay some of their before-tax super contributions into your account (or vice versa) to continue growing your super.

There are limits on how much super your partner can split into your account. The maximum amount of your partner's super that can be split is the lesser of:

  • 85% of the before-tax contributions made in the financial year OR
  • the before-tax contributions cap for that financial year

Contribution splitting is available to people in same or opposite sex de facto relationships – you don’t have to be married.

Your partner would need to contact their super fund to check they also offer contribution splitting.



make extra contributions and you could get a boost from the government


If you’re on parental leave, you’re probably earning less than you usually do. That could mean you’re eligible for a co-contribution from the government if you make after-tax contributions to your super account. That's where if you put some money in, the government could too. 

If your total income is less than $57,016 p.a. and you make an after-tax contribution to your super, you could be eligible for a super co-contribution of up to $500 from the government. The amount you could receive is based on your total income and how much you contribute.




our super specialists can help

Need help figuring out the best strategies for you (and your super) while you’re on parental leave? We can help. There’s no extra cost to see a super specialist: it’s all part of being with HESTA.