When did the merger happen?

WA Super and Aware Super merged on 3 December 2020. On this day WA Super members’ accounts were closed with WA Super, and members retirement savings commenced their transfer to Aware Super. During this time, you won’t be able to transact on your account, but you are able to call 13 AWARE to get information on your account. Online access will be available from 10 December 2020 and you will need your new Aware Super member number to register.

 

Why did WA Super merge with Aware Super?

Aware Super (previously known as First State Super) is Australia’s second largest industry fund, providing superannuation, financial advice, insurance and retirement solutions to their members.

We have all the components for a successful merger – values and cultural alignment, similar member base, understand the value of financial advice, absolute commitment to putting our members first.

At the same time, Aware Super’s government heritage reflects that of WA Super, demonstrating a shared understanding of the importance of supporting local. Like WA Super, Aware Super are also committed to providing service and support to members in WA, including a local member service centre based in Perth. This means that WA Super members and employers will continue to have access to ongoing service and support in WA.
 

How large will the fund become?

WA Super is a $4 billion fund with approx. 60,000 members. When the merger takes place, WA Super members will become part of Australia’s second largest industry fund with

  • Over one million members, and
  • Over $130 billion in funds under management.
     

How do I access my Aware Super account?

You’ll need your Aware Super member number to access your account. This can be found in your Aware Super welcome pack which will be posted from 10 December 2020.  When you have your member number, you’ll be able to access your account online at aware.com.au/login, by the Aware Super mobile app or call us at 13 AWARE.
 

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What will be included in my welcome pack?

Your Aware Super welcome pack will include your new member number, account snapshot and steps for setting up your new account for success.  Until you have received your welcome pack, you are able to call 13 AWARE to request information on your account.
 

When can I access my account online?

Aware Super online access will be available from 10 December. You will need your member number to register for access to your account online or by the Aware Super mobile app. You can download the app from aware.com.au/app. Your WA Super online account access is no longer available.
 

Will I need to notify my employer that I’m moving across to Aware Super?

No, you don’t need to tell your employer as WA Super and Aware Super have merged. All WA Super member accounts will automatically be transferred to Aware Super from Friday 4 December 2020 so from this date, your super will be paid to Aware Super.
 

Where is my local office?

You will continue to access quality service and financial advice at your existing local office at Level 19, 140 St George’s Terrace, Perth. Find more local offices around Australia.
 

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How do I get more information on what is changing?


On 20 October 2020, WA Super sent all members a letter known as a Significant Event Notice (SEN) which outlines the changes occurring as a result of this merger. The next important information packs you’ll receive are:

  1. WA Super Exit Statement, and
  2. The Aware Super welcome pack, which will be sent from 10 December 2020, and will contain all the current information relevant to your account.
     

Are retirement accounts included in the merger? 

Yes, all accounts are included in the merger. Aware Super has more than 25% of its funds under management in retirement accounts and offers specialist products and
support services for members who are in pre-retirement and retirement. 

Will my fees change?

Yes, details of changes in fees were provided in the Significant Event Notice sent to you by WA Super before the merger took place.

 

Will I pay more for insurance cover?

As a result of this merger, most members will pay less for their insurance cover. However, specific details on the cost of your insurance will be provided in your Aware Super welcome pack, or by logging in to your account online. 

 

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What will happen to my insurance as a result of this merger?

WA Super and Aware Super have the same insurer, TAL Life Limited (TAL). However, as part of the transfer, WA Super insurance policies terminated at midnight on 3 December 2020 (AEDT), and from 4 December 2020, your cover with Aware Super will be provided under different policies issued by TAL.

Your Aware Super Welcome Pack will detail your insured benefits.

In the meantime, the changes to the insurance arrangements are summarised below:

  • The level of insurance for death, total permanent disablement (TPD) and income protection (IP) cover at 3 December 2020, for most members, will be the same, but provided as a fixed amount. Fixed cover is where the amount of cover is fixed and will not change because of your salary or age, but the premiums you pay will increase with your age.
  • Some members will receive an increase in death cover to match their level of TPD cover or may receive new death and TPD cover.
  • Your cover with WA Super may currently be subject to exclusions, restrictions and/or loadings under the WA Super policies. These conditions will continue to apply to your insurance with Aware Super.
  • Under Aware Super you will not be able to change your cover automatically. This means to apply for additional cover or remove any existing and new restrictions with Aware Super, you’ll have to provide information about your health, occupation, income and lifestyle. The insurer may, at its discretion, accept the application (with or without conditions) or decline it.
  • Some members may receive an increase in cover or may receive new cover.
  • The waiting periods for some member’s IP insurance may change. Specifically, if you had a waiting period of 180 days, 1 year or 2 years, then you’ll receive a 90 day waiting period with Aware Super (with a possible associated premium change).
  • Most members will receive a reduction in insurance costs on the transfer, but some will incur an increase.
     

What happens if I have a claim that’s not settled?

If you had an existing claim that was lodged with WA Super prior to the transfer, the details of your claim will be transferred to Aware Super and the assessment of your claim will continue. You will not be required to resubmit your claim.
If you were in receipt of income protection benefits prior to the merger, your benefits will continue to be paid directly to you after the merger, provided you continue to meet the eligibility conditions. Any new claims lodged with Aware Super after the transfer date will be considered by Aware Super and TAL in accordance with the relevant insurance policy.
 

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What happens if I have an insurance application that’s not complete?

If you lodged an application for cover with WA Super, our insurer TAL will continue to assess your application. However, you’ll be required to complete an Aware Super Application for Insurance form and read the relevant Product Disclosure Statement. TAL will send an email providing a link to the application form. You will not need to complete Section 6 of the form (Personal Health Statement) if you have already provided this information. TAL will contact you if there are is any other outstanding information required to complete their assessment of your application.
 

Can I claim a rebate for income protection premiums in my tax return?

Aware Super receive a tax deduction for deductible insurance premiums which we pass onto members at the time of the deduction, so a rebate can’t be claimed again in a member’s own tax return.
 

Where can I find Aware Super’s Choice of Fund form?

Download form

 

What will happen to my investment options? Will they change?

Your WA Super investment(s) will be transferred across to the closest equivalent investment option(s) in Aware Super, to ensure that the investment objectives and underlying asset allocation remain broadly aligned without materially changing your risk profile.

To see the equivalent investment option(s) refer to the Significant Event Notice that was sent to you from WA Super on 20 October 2020:

What are the differences in risk and return objectives between WA Super’s investment options and those offered by Aware Super?

The chart below compares the expected risk and return of both funds using the same assumptions provided for both funds from investment strategy consultant, Willis Towers Watson.

 

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Are there differences in how the investment options are managed?


There are differences in how the investment options are managed between WA Super and Aware Super. There will be differences in investment objectives and risk measures, as well as underlying asset allocations for all Aware Super options compared to WA Super. A full breakdown of investment options, including how they are managed, investment objectives, risk measures, underlying asset allocations and investment fees and costs is available in the Member booklet Supplement - Fees and other costs available at aware.com.au/pds.
 

Does Aware Super have a Sustainable Investment Option?

Yes. As a responsible owner, Aware Super considers all its investments through an ESG lens (Environmental, Social, Governance). Aware Super also offers two Socially Responsible Investment (SRI) options.

 

Will I be able to access information on performance of investment portfolios and market update commentary?

The Quarterly Update published by WA Super will not be produced after the merger is finalised. But Aware Super provides regular investment and market watch commentaries which will keep members informed. Read the latest insights.

 

Will my Third-Party Authority (TPA) still be valid?


If you had a Third-Party Authority (TPA) in place for your WA Super account, you will need to set up a new TPA with your Aware Super account.

Download or fill out the form by logging into your account online.
 

Can I still contact my financial adviser?

Yes, the phone number for your adviser hasn’t changed. However, your adviser is undergoing training so they will be able to service you as part of Aware Super. This means it may take longer than usual for your adviser to respond to you. If you need immediate assistance, you can contact us on 1800 620 305. We apologise for any inconvenience this may cause.

 

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When will I have my next review meeting with my financial adviser?

WA Super members and clients who normally receive an annual review meeting with their advisers may experience a delay if their meetings were scheduled after mid-October 2020. There won't be any review meetings taking place between mid-October and February 2021 as a result of the transition. Your adviser will commence review appointments in February, but it may take some time before they can meet with you.

You don’t have to do anything. We will contact you to book your review meeting as soon as possible. If you need immediate assistance, you can contact us on 1800 620 305. We apologise for any inconvenience this may cause.

 

What financial advice and support can I access?


We offer a range of advice services and we’re here to support you. If you’re unsure of what type of help you need, give us a call to chat through your questions on 1800 620 305 or click here to make a time for us to call you.
Aware Super also offer access to a range of free webinars. The webinar super series covers a range of topics to help you get the most out of your super and finances. Join a webinar.

 

Am I still able to access Superclick Advice?


Although you no longer have access to SuperClick Advice, Aware Super has an online tool called explorer, which you can use to plan for your retirement. Explorer allows you to view your super, to see if you can afford to retire earlier, find out how much your retirement could cost and see how any changes you make now might give you more choices for your future.

 

Who will be the Chair and CEO of the fund?

Once the merger takes effect, Deanne Stewart will continue to be the CEO of Aware Super and Neil Cochrane will be the ongoing Chair.

 

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What will the governance arrangements for Aware Super be on completion of the merger?

As part of the merger discussions it was agreed that there would be no changes to the Aware Super Board or Executive Team. We have an equal representation Board – with seven member and seven employer representatives and an independent Chair.

Aware Super is also extremely community-minded and while we are a large national fund, we understand the importance of local service and support and we are committed to maintaining financial advice, education and member support services in Western Australia.
 

# The Aware Super growth product achieved top quartile returns (50 funds), for the 12-months ending 30 June 2020, as well as top quartile average annual returns for longer term periods ending 30 June 2020, SuperRatings Fund Crediting Rate Survey, SR50 Balanced (60-76) Index. Past performance is not indicative of future performance. For the latest investment returns please visit our website: aware.com.au/returns