The High Cost of Late Superannuation Payments

Making superannuation payments on time is not just a regulatory requirement—it’s a crucial step to avoid significant penalties that can have a profound financial impact on your business. Even a single day’s delay in super payments can lead to severe consequences, affecting your financial bottom line and your compliance status with the Australian Taxation Office (ATO).

Understanding the Penalties

If a super payment is late, businesses are required to prepare and lodge a Super Guarantee Charge (SGC) Statement. This involves calculating the shortfall of payments, which is based on the employees’ full salary and wages for the period rather than the Ordinary Time Earnings typically used. This results in a higher super payment for that quarter. Once the calculation is done, the statement needs to be lodged with the Australian Taxation Office (ATO).
Additionally, businesses must pay interest at 10% per annum on the shortfall amount, as well as administrative fees that vary based on the number of employees. For instance, if the shortfall amount is [AUD 1000], the interest charges would be [AUD 100] per year. If the administrative fees are [AUD 20] per employee, and you have [10] employees, the total fees would be [AUD 200]. It’s important to note that these interest charges accrue until the SGC Statement is lodged, regardless of when the super was actually paid.

Non-Deductible Costs

One of the steepest penalties for late super payments is the loss of tax deductibility. Once a payment is late, not only are the required super payments and associated fees non-deductible on your tax returns, but you also face further financial penalties. This includes the interest and administrative fees, which can add up quickly and exacerbate the financial strain on your business.

Best Practices for Compliance

To avoid these penalties and ensure compliance, we strongly advocate for integrating super payments into your regular payroll cycle, ideally on a weekly or fortnightly basis. This practice is not just a suggestion, but a necessity to ensure payments are never missed and to keep your business in good standing with regulatory requirements.
Paying your superannuation on time is more than just a good business practice—it’s a necessity to avoid unnecessary penalties and fees. Make it a priority to review your payment processes and ensure you are meeting all deadlines consistently.
For more detailed information and assistance with your superannuation payments, visit our website or contact us directly. Let’s keep your business compliant and financially healthy!