Employer Legal Obligations
Employer Legal Obligations

Employer Legal Obligations

As an employer what are my legal obligations?

Am I an employerfor super purposes?

You are classified as an employer if you employ a person under a verbal or written employment contract on a:

  • Full-time
  • Part-time, or
  • Casual basis.

You may also be an employer for super purposes if you make payments to a person under a contract for labour.

Do I have to paysuper for myemployees?

Generally, you have to pay super for your employees if they:

  • are paid $450 or more, before tax, in salary or wages in a calendar month; and
  • are aged 18 or over or, if under the age of 18, are working more than 30 hours per week.

Do I have to pay super for contractors?

You may have to make super payments for contractors. There are electronic tools available to help you work out:

  • If someone is an employee or a contractor
  • If someone is eligible for super
  • How much super you have to pay for each eligible employee.

To find out if you are required to pay super for a employee/contractor visit the ATO website and use the Employee/Contractor Decision tool.

When do I paysuper contributions?


Cut-off date for payment

1 (Jul - Sep)

28 October

2 (Oct - Dec)

28 January

3 (Jan - Mar)

28 April

4 (Apr - Jun)

28 July

When a cut-off date for payment falls on a Saturday, Sunday or public holiday you can make your payment on the next working day after that date.

How much superdo I pay?

You need to pay a minimum of 9.5% of each eligible employee's Ordinary Time Earnings*. This usually means the amount they earn for their ordinary hours of work up to the Maximum Contribution Base* for a quarter.

If an employee's Ordinary Time Earnings for a quarter is greater than the Maximum Contribution Base, the employer only needs to base the 9.5% contribution on the Maximum Contribution Base.

The SG rate will remain at 9.5% until 30 June 2021 and then increase by 0.5% each year until it reaches 12% in 2025/2026.

Financial yearCurrent SG Rate
2014/15 – 2020/219.5%

* For more information on Ordinary Time Earnings go to

Can I claim a tax deduction?

Generally, super contributions are tax deductible in the financial year you pay them. You cannot claim a tax deduction for the superannuation guarantee charge because it is a penalty for failing to meet your super obligations by the cut-off dates.

Where do I paysuper contributions?

You may need to pay contributions into a complying super fund or retirement savings account. Your employees may be able to choose the super fund you pay their super contributions into.

Do I need to offermy employees achoice of superfund?

Not everyone is eligible to choose their super fund. It generally depends on the award or industrial agreement that you employ them under. You need to provide a Superannuation Standard Choice form (NAT 13080) to new employees who are eligible to choose a super fund. You need to provide this form within 28 days of the day they start working for you.

Do I need toreport additionalemployer supercontributions on the employee's paymentsummary?

For the 2009-10 income year and all future years, if you offer your employees the option to salary sacrifice some of their before-tax income as super contributions, or if you make additional employer super contributions for your employees, you may need to report the additional amounts to the ATO on your employee's payment summary.

What records doI need to keep?

You need to keep records that show:

  • the amount of super you paid for each employee
  • how you worked out the level of super you paid
  • that you have offered your eligible employees a choice of super fund.

What if I don'tmeet my superobligations?

If you don't meet your super obligations you'll have to pay a super guarantee charge to the ATO.

More information about your legal obligations as an employer can be found on the links below.