If you are a sole trader, or in a partnership, then you are not obligated to make super guarantee (SG) payments for yourself. However, you should still consider making personal contributions to super to help you save for retirement.
Your methods of contributing to super can depend on how you pay yourself. For example, if you receive a wage, then you can set up a regular transfer into super from your income before tax. If your income is from business revenue, you can periodically transfer a lump sum into your super depending on your cash flow.
When contributing to personal super contributions with your after-tax income, you may be eligible to claim tax deductions on them. Before claiming a deduction, you must give your selected super fund a ‘Notice of intent to claim or vary a deduction for personal contributions’ form, and received an acknowledgement from your fund.
You can contribute up to $25,000 a year in concessional super contributions, which are the contributions you can claim tax for, and an additional $100,000 a year in non-concessional super contributions, which you don’t claim deductions for. If you are aged 75 years or older, you are only able to claim tax deductions for contributions you made before the 28th of the month after you turned 75.
You should also check if you are eligible for extra government co-contributions to your super, which are available to eligible low and middle-income earners to increase their retirement savings. If you have a yearly income of less than $52,697 before tax, and you meet the eligibility criteria, then the government will match 50 cents for every dollar that you contribute to your super from your after-tax income. For example, if you contribute $1,000 to your super, the government’s co-contribution will be $500. This will get paid directly into your super account after you lodge your tax return for the year. There is a maximum amount the government will contribute which depends on your income.