Posted 23 October 2023
The trustees of Commonwealth Bank Group Super and Australian Retirement Trust entered into a Successor Fund Transfer Deed which has been signed and exchanged on 20 October 2023. This Deed is an agreement to merge Commonwealth Bank Group Super with Australian Retirement Trust.
The merger is planned to occur in phases. Phase one of the merger is planned to occur on 4 November 2023 and involves the transfer of those members with entitlements in Accumulate Plus or Retirement Access, and those members with Defined Benefit entitlements excluding lifetime pension members whose pensions commenced on or before 18 October 2023. However, even though the Deed has now been entered into, phase one of the merger remains conditional and will not proceed unless all applicable conditions in the Deed are satisfied or waived.
The second phase of the merger involves the transfer of Defined Benefit lifetime pension members anticipated to be during the first half of 2024. Again, phase two of the merger remains conditional and will not proceed unless all applicable conditions in the Deed are satisfied or waived.
Following the second phase of the merger, the Group Super fund will be wound up, once all the final expenses and provisions of the fund are accounted for and financial statements, final tax return, and fund audits are completed.
The merger will involve the transfer of all Group Super fund assets, including the assets that are not allocated to members’ benefits – the 'unallocated surplus'. The unallocated surplus is partly attributable to the fund’s defined benefit divisions and partly attributable to accounts that are eligible for investment choice.
The unallocated surplus will be transferred in phases, aligned to the phases used to transfer members and their benefits and the payment of all final liabilities, costs and taxes of the fund. One-off costs related to the merger project, wind-up and certain asset disposal costs are to be offset against the unallocated surplus.
Accumulate Plus and Retirement Access: The trustees currently propose that the amount of unallocated surplus attributable to accounts that are eligible for investment choice will be allocated to eligible members with investment choice accounts after the transfer to Australian Retirement Trust.
Defined Benefit divisions generally: With the merger of Group Super occurring in more than one phase, the fund’s actuary has advised the amount of unallocated surplus to be transferred to the CBA Group Super Plan with Australian Retirement Trust in phase one of the merger. The remainder of the unallocated surplus will be transferred when phase two of the merger is completed.
Defined Benefit Divisions CB, CC, CD, CE, CF, CN or CO accumulation-style accounts eligible for investment choice: The trustees currently propose that the amount of unallocated surplus attributable to accounts that are eligible for investment choice will be allocated to eligible members with investment choice accounts after the transfer to Australian Retirement Trust.
The trustees currently propose that the assets (if any) to be allocated to eligible members with investment choice accounts after the transfer to Australian Retirement Trust will be in two stages.
To be eligible for an allocation by Australian Retirement Trust:
The trustee of Group Super will retain a portion of the unallocated surplus to meet estimated financial liabilities. At the same time, the trustees will determine the first amount (if any) that can be allocated to eligible members.
A second allocation, if any, would be made up of adjustments resulting from the finalisation of wind up activities including the final financial statements, final tax return, and final asset valuations. Because the finalisation of wind up activities will take some time, it will also take some time after the transfer before any second allocation may be made to eligible members by Australian Retirement Trust.
As Australian Retirement Trust will carry out allocations (if any) to eligible members’ accounts, it will contact you if you’re eligible to receive an allocation.
As part of the transfer of the fund’s assets to Australian Retirement Trust, there may be deviations from the target strategic asset allocation (and ranges) for the Defined Benefit investment options as we approach the transfer date. In particular, some cash may be held within a range of asset classes in the lead up to the transfer.
You’ll receive your welcome communication from Australian Retirement Trust in early to mid-November which will include your new member number and instructions to access your membership and benefit details in the Australian Retirement Trust portal. You’ll also receive your transfer statement from Group Super during December, to confirm that your superannuation entitlements have been transferred from Group Super to Australian Retirement Trust.
For more information on the limited services period and other frequently asked questions, visit our merger hub.