Author archives: Marita Wall

ASIC reports on risks associated with third-party authorities

On 9 August 2018, ASIC released a report that has potential implications for superannuation funds where an adviser is authorised to ‘operate’ or ‘transact’ on an account.  The report covered  various levels of adviser involvement – from ‘view only’ access to complete control. The ASIC report followed a review of 6 banks after the collapse…

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Lessons and a warning for super fund directors and senior executives

On 1 May, the Federal Treasurer issued a severe warning for directors and senior executives of financial institutions.  He said that APRA’s Report into breaches by the Commonwealth Bank is “required reading” for all financial institutions – not just bank boards and they need to: “read it very closely and ask themselves the hard questions…

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Same-sex Marriage and Superannuation

Same-sex marriage and Superannuation Superannuation fund trustees need to be alert to the impact the same-sex marriage laws have in superannuation.  The new law changed the definition of “spouse”, which has a flow-on effect to definitions in the SIS Act of “spouse”, “dependant” and “relative”. Death benefits Some think the new laws aren’t relevant for…

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Mercer v Billinghurst: Some lessons for trustees

Last week, the Full Court of the Federal Court handed down judgement in Mercer Superannuation (Australia) Limited v Billinghurst.[1]  Greenfields acted for Mr Billinghurst.  This was the third decision against the trustee (following the determination of the Superannuation Complaints Tribunal[2] (SCT) and the judgment of Moshinsky J in first instance[3]). Mr Billinghurst was a retired…

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Interim Report: Financial System External Dispute Resolution Framework

The Interim Report on the Review of the financial system external dispute resolution framework was released yesterday (6 December). The Report includes 11 draft recommendations: A financial, credit and investment disputes Ombudsman There should be a single industry ombudsman scheme for financial, credit and investment disputes (other than superannuation disputes) to replace FOS and CIO.…

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The impact of the CommInsure debacle on Trustees

It is doubtful that anyone in Australia has failed to hear about the fiasco faced by CommInsure.  The repercussions have extended to the Commonwealth Bank and other insurance companies.   It has also impacted superannuation fund trustees, particularly those whose external insurer is CommInsure. The fallout for superannuation funds is not only on the reputation of…

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