The government has told retirees affected by tougher pension rules to spend their super, and not assume they can maintain it as “a capital pool to be passed on as an inheritance”.
Minister for Social Services Scott Morrison told Fairfax Media that retirees should draw down on their super savings to maintain an income, and should not expect to pass on sizable lump sums to their children.
"The purpose of providing tax incentives to encourage people to build up their super is so they can draw down on it in their retirement,” Mr Morrison said.
Although superannuation was left relatively untouched in the 2015 federal Budget, it looks set to be big ticket item at the next federal election.
The Labor party has already released its plans for superannuation if elected, which include taxing earnings in retirement at 15 per cent for those earning over $75,000 and reducing the threshold of the high-income super charge to $250,000 from $300,000.
"I read that Tony Abbott wants to make superannuation an election issue. Bring it on. Labor is always delighted to fight an election on superannuation, one of our proudest creations," said shadow treasurer Chris Bowen at the National Press Club last week.
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