THE TECHNICAL CORNER: Changes to Super - Stapled Funds

What is it?

From 1 November 2021, if you have a new employee starting with your business and they do not nominate a fund by completing the Superannuation Standard Choice form, you as the employer will then have to search for the employee’s ‘stapled’ fund using ATO Online Services.

A stapled super fund is an existing super account that is linked, or 'stapled', to an individual employee so that it follows them as they change jobs. This change aims to reduce the super account fees an employee may be subjected to where a new super fund account is opened every time an employee starts a new job.


What you need to do?


You will need to request stapled super fund details when: 

  • Your new employee starts on or after 1 November 2021
  • You need to make super guarantee payments for that employee, and
  • Your employee is eligible to choose a super fund but doesn’t.

How to prepare?

To prepare for these changes you will need to check and update the access levels of your authorised representatives in ATO Online Services.

If an authorised representative doesn't:

  • Have full access to ATO online services, they will need to have the 'Employee Commencement Form' permission in order to request a stapled super fund
  • Need to access this service, you should remove this permission for them to protect your employees’ personal information.

Step 1: Offer your eligible employees a choice of super fund

You need to offer your eligible employees a choice of super fund by providing them with the Superannuation Standard Choice form and paying their super into the account they have listed on the completed form.

If you pay contractors mainly for their labour, they are employees for superannuation guarantee purposes and you may need to pay super to a fund for them. If you need to pay super and they do not make a choice, you will have to request a stapled super fund.

Step 2: Request stapled super fund details


If your employee doesn’t choose a super fund, you will need to log into the ATO online services to request their stapled super fund details.


To request a stapled super fund your authorised representative will need to:

  1. Log in to ATO online services.
  2. Enter your employee's details, including their:
    • TFN – an exemption code can be entered where an employee cannot provide their TFN, but this could result in processing delays
    • full name – including ‘other given name’ if known
    • date of birth
    • address (residential or postal), if TFN is not given.
  3. The ATO online system will use rules based on the regulations to work out and return a stapled super fund in response to a request.

You will receive the response on-screen. You should be notified of the result of the stapled super fund request within minutes. The ATO will notify your employee of the stapled super fund request and the fund details that have been provided.

Step 3: Pay super into the stapled super fund


If the ATO provide a stapled super fund result for your employee, you must pay your employee’s super guarantee contributions to the stapled super fund details that have been provided.


You can pay into your employer default fund or another fund that meets the choice of fund rules if:

  • Your employee doesn’t choose a super fund, and
  • The ATO has advised you that they don’t have a stapled super fund.

Feel free to contact us on how we can help you with changes to Super!

Tradies Accountant