Swinging a super stick
BOSSES who don’t pay their workers enough super will soon be smacked with “a bloody big stick”, the Federal Government has warned.
Assistant Treasurer Stuart Robert says fresh changes to the Government’s super legislation introduce extraordinarily tough penalties for employers who don’t come clean about underpaying super.
Extra powers have been given to the Australian Taxation Office to use technology to track employers who rip off workers, and a 12month amnesty allowing bosses to make up missed payments ends in May next year.
“It is theft of an employee’s future,” Mr Robert said of bosses’ failure to pay compulsory 9.5 per cent employer superannuation guarantee (SG) contributions.
“There will be tougher penalties for those employers who repeatedly short-change their workers.”
Harsh financial penalties and prison terms loom for serious offenders.
“We estimate 50,000 lowpaid Australians will receive a combined $230 million,” Mr Robert said of the amnesty, which only applied to employers who confessed before the ATO caught them.
“The amnesty has a carrot, and we’re now putting a bloody big stick next to it,” he told the The Association of Superannuation Funds of Australia (ASFA) 2018 conference in Adelaide last week. He also announced a minor backflip on the plan to rattled the superannuation industry.
ASFA CEO Martin Fahy said Australia’s $2.7 trillion super system would experience “tortuous and acrimonious” debates in the year ahead amid the fallout from the banking royal commission.