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SuperStream - a new mandatory system for paying and receiving superannuation
What is SuperStream and who needs to use it
SuperStream is a standard for processing superannuation data and payments electronically in a format that is transmitted between employers, super funds, service providers and the ATO.
It must be used by employers and superfunds (with one exception for superfunds).
Your SMSF doesn't need to use SuperStream if it doesn't receive any employer contributions, or the only employer contributions are from a related-party employer. For example, if you're an employee of your family business and your super guarantee contributions go to your SMSF, these contributions are exempt from the SuperStream standard.
When do you have to start using this system
A superfund needs to be compliant if they are receiving any contributions from an employer using SuperStream (in other words, they need to be complaint from 1 July 2016 at the latest unless they are exempt (as discussed above)
A small employer (fewer than 19 employees) needs to use SuperStream from 1 July 2016
How to use SuperStream
The ATO provides the following options
a payroll system that meets the SuperStream standard A full list of accounting software that has SuperStream functionality can be found here Software classified as "Gold" in that list should include the ability to automatically update the ATO when super is paid.
your super fund's online system Large superfunds (such as First State Super) already have SuperStream so if your employees are members of large superfunds (also known as APRA superfunds) then those superfunds should be using SuperStream already which means that you don't have to install any software, simply use the superfund's website to log your payments (or call the superfund up and ask them if they use SuperStream and they should instruct you on how to use it)
a super clearing house (for small business employers) This is a more streamlined way to pay employees' super, especially when you have employees using different superfunds or you have man employees. This service is provided by the ATO but only for small businesses (businesses with less than 20 employees or an aggregated turnover of less than $2 million).
Information about using this option can be found here