THE federal government’s decision to allow superannuation funds to provide personal advice to members has polarised the financial services industry.
Simple advice about super will be now easier to find and cost less than $100 a time after regulatory changes that allow funds to answer questions from members, without fear of criminal penalties.
Super funds will be able to answer questions such as which investment option they should have, whether to make after-tax or salary-sacrifice contributions into super and the worth of taking life insurance through a super fund. The advice, however, cannot cover anything which is outside a fund.
Only intra-fund advice is available, so it will not cover getting personal advice about whether to merge different funds into one, or whether to take a transition to retirement pension from a fund while working.
Red tape that previously barred funds from offering such personal advice has been cut away by the Australian Securities & Investment Commission to reassure funds that such advice will not breach current consumer protection laws.
Financial Planning Association chief executive Jo-Anne Bloch said the plan threatened to put the superannuation savings of millions of Australians at risk.
Source The Australian
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