If you’ve ever moved house, taken time off work, lived overseas or changed jobs, it’s possible you’ve lost track of some super along the way. Here’s how to find out and get it back.



The amount in lost and unclaimed super has reached a staggering $16 billion, according to data from the Australian Taxation Office (ATO)*. 


It may sound too good to be true, but even the most financially organised people have been surprised to find anywhere from a few hundred, to tens of thousands of dollars in lost super.


With the ATO revealing nearly one in four people currently have two or more super accounts*, it’s a real possibility you may have lost track of some super along the way.



How do you find your lost super?


If you’re now wondering whether some of that $16 billion may in fact be yours, the good news is, we can find it for you, regardless of whether it’s sitting with a different super provider or it has already been transferred to the ATO.


If you’re a CFS member, check out our SuperMatch tool when you log into your FirstNet account. Here’s what info you’ll need and the steps to follow. You can also use the ATO’s myGov website.



When do super funds send your super to the ATO?


Super funds are required to send lost and unclaimed super money to the ATO twice a year.


An example of when your super fund may need to transfer your money to the ATO is when your account balance is less than $6,000 and either the fund has lost contact with you, or your account has become inactive. 


There are a number of other instances when your super fund may need to send your super to the ATO, which you can check out on the ATO website.


It’s also worth finding lost super you may have before it gets transferred, as earnings may be more favourable. This is because interest applied by the ATO is calculated differently to most super funds.


What happens if you do find lost super?


If the ATO is holding super for you, you’ll be able to transfer the money to an active super account, or potentially withdraw the money if you meet certain requirements


If on the other hand your lost super search reveals you have lost super with other super providers, the next important consideration is whether there may be benefits to rolling your accounts into one. 


These benefits may include:

  • Fewer sets of fees, which could save you hundreds of dollars per year
  • Less paperwork and admin, which could save you time and make things simpler
  • Easier to manage, as you’re able to oversee your investment strategy and any insurance arrangement all in the one place.



What should you check before you consolidate super?


Consider the features and benefits you may lose with the account you’re considering closing, including any insurance cover.


If you’re using the CFS SuperMatch tool to find your super, you can also use the tool to complete the consolidation process. You’ll be able to see a total list of your super accounts, the individual balance of these accounts and their insurance status before you choose to consolidate as well.


If you’re contemplating rolling your accounts into one, it may be worth talking to your financial adviser to understand any implications. If you don’t have one, you can use our find an adviser service.



Why lost super may become a thing of the past?


Stapling laws, which came into effect in November 2021, make it less likely for you to lose track of your super.


That’s because if you already have a fund and start a new job, your employer contributions will automatically go to your existing super fund, unless you actively choose a new fund. 




* ATO media release - Check your myGov account for your share of $16 billion in lost and unclaimed super

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Avanteos Investments Limited ABN 20 096 259 979, AFSL 245531 (AIL) is the trustee of the Colonial First State FirstChoice Superannuation Trust ABN 26 458 298 557 and issuer of FirstChoice range of super and pension products. Colonial First State Investments Limited ABN 98 002 348 352, AFSL 232468 (CFSIL) is the responsible entity and issuer of products made available under FirstChoice Investments and FirstChoice Wholesale Investments.


Information on this webpage is provided by AIL and CFSIL. It may include general advice but does not consider your individual objectives, financial situation, needs or tax circumstances. You can find the target market determinations (TMD) for our financial products at  https://www.cfs.com.au/tmd which include a description of who a financial product might suit. You should read the relevant Product Disclosure Statement (PDS) and Financial Services Guide (FSG) carefully, assess whether the information is appropriate for you, and consider talking to a financial adviser before making an investment decision. You can get the PDS and FSG at www.cfs.com.au or by calling us on 13 13 36.