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Insurance in Super

How insurance in super works

The demands of working in the mining and resource sector – such as long hours, gruelling swings, remote locations and fly-in/fly-out work – can take a real toll on your physical and mental health.

That’s why, if you work in the industry, it’s important you consider the options available for insurance cover through your super. This helps you secure your financial future. And most of all, provide for you and your loved ones when you need it the most – especially when you’re no longer working.

For any insurance cover you have through super, the premiums are deducted from your super account and not your take-home pay – it’s usually a tax-effective way to go too.

Best of all, our buying power means we can offer a competitive rate on your insurance premiums, so your insurance is likely to be cheaper than if you took it out yourself.

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Three types of cover

You have access to three different types of cover as part of our insurance offering.

Death Cover

Also known as life insurance, this type of cover pays a lump sum in the event of your death or the diagnosis of a terminal illness.
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Total and Permanent Disablement (TPD) cover

This insurance pays a lump sum if you become totally and permanently disabled and are unlikely to ever work again in a job you’re reasonably qualified for by education, training and experience.
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Income Protection Insurance

Provides a replacement income (generally a percentage of your current income), if you are unable to work due to illness or injury. It’s sometimes referred to as ‘Salary continuance insurance’.
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Death Cover

Death cover – otherwise known as life insurance – pays your beneficiary a lump sum in the case of your death, or if you’re diagnosed with a terminal illness.

Your death cover benefit will be equal to your super balance as well as an insured component (if eligible).

In the event of your death, the Trustee will determine who should receive your death benefit (unless you have a valid binding death benefit nomination).

Superannuation law says the trustee must pay a death benefit to a ‘dependant’, ‘dependants’ or your legal personal representative (i.e. your estate). The payment can be split between dependants/your legal personal representative. It is only if neither dependant nor a legal personal representative exist can a payment be made to someone else.

You may nominate who your death benefit will be paid to by making a binding nomination (which, if valid at the time of death, must be followed) or preferred nomination (which will be used as a guide to your intentions).

If you make a binding nomination and it is valid at the time of death, the trustee must follow your instructions. This gives you control over the distribution of your superannuation death benefit. However, you must be mindful to update your instructions if your circumstances or intentions regarding your binding nomination change. For example, if you and your legally married spouse split up, your spouse will remain a dependant until a divorce is finalised.

You can only make a valid binding nomination to a legal personal representative (i.e. your estate), dependant or dependants, such as a children (includes adult children), spouse (including de facto), someone you’re in an interdependent relationship or someone who depends on you financially.

A dependant must meet the definition of dependant at the time of death to remain a valid binding nomination. Binding nominations remain valid for 3 years, after which they expire, and your nomination will need to be renewed or become a preferred nomination.

If you make a preferred nomination, the trustee will consider your choice. However, they will still make the ultimate decision on how your death benefit is paid. The trustee will take into account your circumstances at the time of death, particularly any material changes since you made your preferred nomination.

You can make a preferred nomination by logging into your account and following the instructions. However, if you want to make a binding nomination, you’ll need to download and complete a Binding Nomination form. Your signature must be witnessed by two people who aren’t beneficiaries of your super. Binding nominations remain valid for 3 years, after which they expire, and your nomination will need to be renewed or become a preferred nomination.

Making a death benefit claim involves a three-step process:

  • Contact us. We’ll send you an Application for Death Benefit Form and other information about what you need to provide.
  • Collate documents. We’ll still need information such as proof of your relationship with the deceased (e.g. a birth certificate or marriage certificate) as well as a copy of the Will, Grant of Probate/Letters of Administration (if applicable) and details of other potential dependants.
  • Complete a statutory declaration. Someone you’ve known for a while will need to fill out a declaration to confirm your circumstances.

Depending on the circumstances, the death benefits claim process can be complex and require the trustee to make enquiries into your personal situation at the time of death before deciding who the benefit should be paid to.

Once the trustee of the super fund has collected relevant information, it will make a decision about paying the benefit. The trustee will usually contact those involved to let them know the decision on the distribution of the death benefit.

A valid binding nomination must be followed by the trustee.

If there is no valid binding nomination, the trustee will generally give interested parties 28 days to object to the decision. If there is no objection, they’ll make the payment as soon as possible afterwards.

If there is an objection, the trustee will consider the objection and either affirm the original decision or make a different decision. If someone still isn’t happy with the decision, they can bring a complaint to the Australian Financial Complaints Authority.

Total & Permanent Disability (TPD) Insurance

TPD Insurance pays you a lump sum if you become totally and permanently disabled and are unlikely to ever work again in a job you’re reasonably qualified for by education, training and experience.

Your lump sum payment will be your super balance, plus, if you’re eligible, your insured component.

You can find specific details about how your benefit is calculated and whether you qualify for an insured amount in your Product Disclosure Statement (PDS) and the Insurance, Fees and Costs Guide.

To begin the claims process, contact us via info@resourcesuper.com.au or use the contact form, and we’ll send you the forms you need.

To make a claim, you’ll generally need to provide the following documents:

  • Privacy consent form. This allows us to pass on sensitive information to the insurer. It also lets us contact your employer to discuss your work history and capacity for work.
  • Member’s claim statement. This provides details of your claim.  
  • Two medical reports. These should detail your condition.

We may also request a form be completed by your last employer. You’ll also need to provide identification documents. These must be certified and can include a copy of your birth certificate, driver license or passport.

How long you need to wait depends on whether or not you have an insured component.

  • If you have no insured component, there is no waiting period. Once you’ve provided medical evidence and you meet our criteria, your super funds will be released.
  • If you have an insured component, there is usually a waiting period of three or six months, which begins on the last day you worked. This can be waived in some circumstances, such as if you have a terminal illness.

If you’re still in a waiting period, we suggest you contact us anyway so that we can help you understand the application process.

Each claim is different, but you should expect the assessment process to take several months. If you have a terminal illness, we’ll expedite your claim.

The insurer may also need you to undergo further tests, including from medical specialists, which they’ll pay for.

Income Protection Insurance

Income protection insurance is designed to replace a percentage of your income and help you pay the bills if you are unable to work due to temporary illness or injury. Your benefit will usually be 75% of your salary, and the maximum period you can receive it is normally two or five years.

However, there are different benefit structures and payment periods which may apply.

You may be eligible to receive Income Protection automatically, so long as you’re a permanent employee (i.e. not a casual worker) and meet our minimum requirements, which includes being 25 years of age, with an account balance of at least $6,000. If eligible , you can opt-in for cover prior to this age and account balance requirement. You can log into your account to find out whether or not you’re covered by Income Protection Insurance.

If you’d like to find out more about your insurance, or change your level of Income Protection Insurance cover, please contact us.

Your income protection benefit will have a waiting period (90 days, 60 days or 30 days) from the date of your illness of injury before you can make an income protection claim. Make sure to check your employer fact sheet or speak with your company human resources team to confirm the waiting period.

However, if you intend to bring a claim, you should contact us before the end of your waiting period to receive the forms you’ll need.

To begin a claim, contact us and we’ll send you the forms you need to complete. These include:

  • Privacy consent form. This allows us to pass on sensitive information to the insurer. It also lets us contact your employer to discuss your work history and capacity for work.
  • Members’ claim statement. This provides details of your claim.
  • Disability medical report. You’ll need to get your doctor to complete this form and return it to us.

We may also request a form be completed by your employer. You’ll also need to provide identification documents. These must be certified and can include a copy of you driver license or passport.

The assessment process usually takes a few months, although each claim is different. We, or your insurer, will contact you regularly to let you know how your claim is progressing.

The insurer may also need you to undergo further tests, including from medical specialists, which they’ll pay for.

If the insurer approves your claim, they’ll pay you directly. Any approval will usually only be for a set period and the insurer will pay you monthly in arrears.

If you return to work during your approved period, your payments will usually stop. However, if you return on reduced hours, you may receive a partial benefit.

If you’re still not fit for work at the end of your approved period, the insurer will ask you to submit a Continuing Claim Form and treating doctor’s report.

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