Free email update service
You can now find out about any changes to the ATO website with our free email
update service. By subscribing to this service you will receive a heading, brief
description, publication date and a link for every change to the website. By clicking on
the link you can go straight to the new or updated document.
You can receive daily, weekly or monthly free email updates and you can tailor the
service to cover any or all of the following areas:
tax and super professionals
This service will allow those in the super industry to keep up to date with the latest
ATO information. You can be kept informed when the latest industry forum minutes
are posted or when changes to media specifications occur.
The only information you need to supply is an email address. This information is
easily change your request or unsubscribe by selecting the link included in each free
To subscribe to the free email update service go to www.ato.gov.au/subscription.
Future delivery of SuperUpdate
As mentioned in the article above, you can now receive free email updates. Currently
this service only covers updates to the ATO website but will be expanded in the future
to include updates on newsletters. This means you will soon be able to subscribe to
SuperUpdate and other ATO newsletters electronically.
Being part of the free email update service, the newsletter updates will be delivered in
the same way as the website updates. You will receive an email alerting you to a new
issue of the newsletter.
A link will be provided so you can access the newsletter on the ATO website. This
means you must have
both email and internet access to use this service. The newsletter will not be sent as an
You will be able to easily add or delete your details from the subscription list. The
What does this mean for SuperUpdate?
Currently SuperUpdate is faxed to around 1300 subscribers. A small number of clients
do receive an emailed version where SuperUpdate is attached as a word document.
Once the free email update service is available for newsletters, SuperUpdate will no
longer be delivered as a faxed paper version or as an emailed attachment. SuperUpdate
will only be available through the free email update service.
What you need to do
You do not need to do anything at this stage. SuperUpdate will continue to be
delivered through the usual process.
Once newsletter updates are available you will be informed of this through
SuperUpdate. Clients receiving the faxed version can then subscribe to SuperUpdate
directly from the ATO website.
If you already receive an email copy you may have to renew your subscription. We
will tell you if you need to re-register closer to the delivery changeover.
You will be kept informed of what is happening through future issues of SuperUpdate
and a clear notice will be given when the final faxed version is issued. If you have any
concerns over this change in delivery, please contact the editor of SuperUpdate on 02
Beta version of ECI validator software available
The electronic media specifications have been revised for alignment with various
legislative changes. These specifications have been issued and are effective from 1 July
To facilitate the testing of new or changed software for these specifications, a beta
version of the validator software which validates the new versions of superannuation
surcharge assessment variation advice statement (AVA), member contributions
statement (MCS) and member exit statement for constitutionally protected
superannuation funds (MES) data files is available.
The validator software is used in checking data files lodged via the
electronic commerce interface (ECI) and the corporate external gateway (CEG). For
more information on data file lodgments, refer to the acknowledgment report article in
this issue of SuperUpdate.
The new versions of the validator program and the superannuation surcharge electronic
media specifications are available from the ATO website at
Please note that reasonable benefit limits and lost members register electronic media
specifications are not changing and the existing versions will remain current from 1
Acknowledgment reports can advise of
errors in data supplied
For every data file that is lodged for superannuation contributions surcharge purposes,
the supplier will receive an acknowledgment report. As the acknowledgment report can
advise of errors in the data supplied, it is therefore important that suppliers check all
acknowledgment reports. Errors reported in the acknowledgment report cover the data
quality, such as completion of mandatory fields, and satisfying electronic media
specifications lodgment rules.
If there are no data errors, the supplier will receive an acknowledgment that the data
file has been accepted. The exception is for paper lodgments, in which case the
supplier will only be contacted if there is an error.
Acknowledgment reports should not be confused with transmission reports (referred to
as validation reports in some ELS software). A transmission report indicates receipt of
the data file. It does not mean that the data file has been loaded onto the surcharge
system and the data checked for errors. At the transmission stage, a data file is checked
for format compatibility only.
If there is a formatting problem, for example, or if the wrong version of the
specifications has been used, a transmission report will be issued advising that
transmission has been unsuccessful.
Lodging via ECI and CEG
For lodgments via the corporate external gateway (CEG) or the electronic commerce
interface (ECI), there are two stages at which errors may be detected. Both CEG and
ECI use the ECI validator program to check lodgment data files.
Please note that a new version of the ECI validator software will be in place from 1
July 2001 to cover changes in the electronic media specifications. For more
information, refer to the validator article in this issue of SuperUpdate.
For CEG lodgments, if errors are found at the validation stage, the entire data file will
be rejected. All errors must be corrected and the data file relodged. Until such time as
the data file is accepted without errors, the supplier is taken not to have complied with
the legislation. Error or acknowledgment reports for CEG lodgments are transmitted
electronically as a text file.
For lodgments via ECI, data files are validated prior to transmission. This means that
errors have to be fixed before a data file can be transmitted. Once a data file is
validated without errors, transmission will be allowed and a message will appear on the
'sending screen' indicating successful transmission.
Once the data file has passed validation, a further acknowledgment report may be
issued after the data is loaded onto the surcharge system. A superannuation surcharge
acknowledgment will only occur at the load stage if information on the data file
conflicts with information already on the surcharge system. Only those records that
contain inconsistencies will reject at this stage. This applies to both CEG and ECI
Lodging via MIPS and ELS
For lodgments via magnetic information processing services (MIPS) (including
SuperReport) and electronic lodgment service (ELS), a superannuation surcharge
acknowledgment will be produced if the information supplied contains errors.
Reporting for the members whose data records have rejected is taken not to have
occurred until the data is relodged.
Currently MIPs and ELS do not use the validator program to check lodgment files. It is
planned to extend the use of the validator to lodgments via MIPS and ELS in the
future. When the validator is in place, the entire data file will reject if errors are found.
As a supplier, it is imperative that you read the superannuation surcharge
acknowledgment report and correct and re-report any data records that have rejected.
The Superannuation surcharge error manual for acknowledgment reports explains the
errors and the action required to correct them. It is available from the Superannuation
website at www.ato.gov.au/super.
If you require assistance understanding a particular error, or you have difficulty
relodging, you can call the superannuation lodgments systems support team on 13 10
20, for the cost of a local call.
Prompt action to remedy any errors will avoid problems caused to clients by delayed
assessments. It will also make the lodgment process more efficient for both the
supplier and the ATO.
If you do not receive an acknowledgment report, you should enquire as to whether
your data file has been loaded. Generally, with the exception of peak times, you could
expect to receive an acknowledgment report within 4 weeks of lodging the data file.
However, if it is over 6 weeks since lodgment and you have not received a report, it is
recommended that you contact the superannuation lodgments systems support team on
13 10 20.
New surcharge reporting requirement
– member transfers
From 1 July 2001, where a superannuation provider transfers a member's contributions
after the end of the financial year but prior to the surcharge member contributions
statement (MCS) notification date, the transferor provider will be required to report
one of the following in respect of the destination provider:
Australian business number (ABN)
superannuation fund number (SFN).
Transferor providers may wish to report the tax file number (TFN) of the destination
Destination provider ABNs, SFNs, or TFNs, where supplied, must be valid numbers.
At the validation stage, the reported ABN, SFN or TFN will be run against the
Previously, supplying the destination provider’s SFN or ABN was optional. However,
as of 1 July 2001, it becomes mandatory. If an ABN or SFN is not provided, or a
number is invalid, then the whole data file will be rejected by the validator. The
transfer data record will be rejected if submitted via magnetic information processing
services or electronic lodgment service.
How to obtain the ABN or SFN of the destination provider.
Register of complying funds (ROCs) – The ROCs register can be used to obtain
the SFN or ABN of the destination provider. A search of the register can be made
using the exact provider name. The register is located on the Superannuation
website at www.ato.gov.au/super.
Provider literature – The ABN or SFN of the destination provider may be found
in literature or forms produced by the destination provider.
It is recommended that providers ensure that their ABN and/or SFN is clearly
displayed on their literature and forms. This will assist the transferor provider in
obtaining the destination provider's ABN or SFN either directly, for example from an
application form or from the member.
Super industry welcomes… SuperMatch
The 2001 Conference of Major Super Funds, held in Queensland this year, was the
stage for the launch of the ATO’s new SuperMatch technology. Hosted by Leo Bator,
Deputy Commissioner of Taxation, the launch gave delegates and invited guests the
opportunity to learn about SuperMatch first hand.
With interactive demonstrations, multi media presentations and knowledgable ATO
staff on hand to field questions, the launch gave SuperMatch exposure to a range of
fund trustees, financial advisers and CEO's. SuperMatch was extremely well received,
with nine organisations including funds and financial advisers signed up for access
SuperMatch is an electronic commerce interface (ECI) designed to match individuals
with specific information from the lost members register (LMR); unredeemed
Superannuation Guarantee (SG) vouchers and the superannuation holding accounts
reserve (SHAR) on a bulk basis. There is also the facility to undertake individual
searches on LMR.
This facility will enable individuals to locate and consolidate their superannuation into
one account. Individuals will also be able to earn interest on monies previously held in
unredeemed SG vouchers and SHAR.
Funds will benefit from a simpler process of locating SG and SHAR monies, as well
providing an all round service to members.
Stringent security measures are in place including a requirement for the organisations
to obtain a digital certificate, sign a formal agreement and obtain ATO authorisation
before being granted access to SuperMatch. As part of the signed agreement
organisations are required to obtain written authorisation from each individual before
initiating the search.
For more information on:
Contact ESD Technical Support Centre on 1300 139 373
ATO authorisation to access SuperMatch:
Send an email to firstname.lastname@example.org with the following details:
organisation tax file number (TFN)
organisation Australian business number (ABN)
type of organisation (eg. Superannuation fund, financial adviser, tax agent etc.)
contact telephone number
contact email address
reason for requiring access.
Tax Office grants extensions to register transitional
Reasonable Benefit Limits.
Please following media release.
Tax Office Grants Extensions To Register Transitional Reasonable
Taxpayers who missed the Tax Office’s 4 April 1997 deadline for lodging
transitional Reasonable Benefit Limit (TRBL) applications will be able to have
late applications considered as a result of recent Administrative Appeals
Deputy Tax Commissioner, Leo Bator, said the decision applies to new
applications as well as those the Tax Office has previously denied, however,
those who had previously been denied an extension would have to reapply.
The applicant must meet eligibility requirements and have the necessary
documentary evidence to back the claim. This evidence must include:
copies of group certificates for the three years used in an individuals
highest average salary calculation;
documentary evidence of the start date of the individual’s eligible service
period; eg. a copy of a superannuation fund statement;
for individuals under 50, a statement from their superannuation or roll-over
fund verifying the amount of their vested superannuation benefits at 30
for individuals under 50, documentary evidence verifying any employer
contract entitlement (where applicable) at 30 June 1994;
Mr Bator said those receiving or who have received an arm's length salary
because they are an associate of their employer must include:
documentation showing the applicant is an associate under the terms of
subsection 26AAB(14) of the Income Tax Assessment Act 1936(this
documentation must include relevant Australian Securities Commission
details in accordance with subregulation 47(3) of the Income Tax
Regulations, so the Commissioner can determine the value of the arm’s
“The change in policy reflects the decision by the Administrative Appeals
Tribunal that the discretion to grant an extension is an unfettered discretion,”Mr
Those wishing to apply for an extension of time to register their application for
a TRBL should contact the Superannuation Helpline on 13 10 20 or visit the
Superannuation Business Line website at www.ato.gov.au/super.
18 April 2001
Media Contact: Matthew Frost (02) 6216 8220
We really appreciate your feedback. To make any suggestions about how we can make
SuperUpdate work better for you contact the Editor by phone on 02 6216 8289 or by
fax on 02 6216 8451. Please let the editor know if you would like your name removed
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SuperUpdate can be found on the website at www.ato.gov.au/super