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How to help your partner grow their super during time off work

23 May 2023

Taking time off work for any reason can negatively impact a super balance at retirement. Missing out on super contributions, and the associated investment returns and compound interest can affect anyone’s future retirement plans.

There can be many reasons for taking time off work. Having a baby and raising children are obviously the most common, but other reasons can include caring for elderly parents, ill health, study and redundancy.

If you are married or in a de-facto relationship and your partner is taking time off work, you can help them get their retirement plans back on track by contributing to their super. And you might even receive tax benefits for doing so.

Enjoy a brighter future together

By helping your partner to grow their super, you can enjoy a comfortable retirement together.

You can pay into your partner’s superannuation, as long as they are aged under 75 years, and you are:

  • married or in a de-facto relationship
  • both Australian residents at the time the contribution is made
  • permanently living together when the contribution is made, i.e. you are not separated or apart.

Two ways to grow your partner’s super

There are two ways that you can pay into your partner’s superannuation.

1. Spouse contributions

You can pay amounts directly into your partner’s superannuation from after-tax income. These are called spouse contributions.

Spouse contributions are made from after-tax income, which means they cannot be salary sacrificed.

There is no tax on spouse contributions, as long as they do not exceed your partner’s non-concessional contributions cap (which is $110,000 for 2022/23). If your partner earns between $37,000 and $40,000 each year, you could also receive a tax offset of up to $540 (as at 2022/23).

If your spouse is also a Brighter Super member, spouse contributions can be made using BPAY. The BPAY details are available through their Member Online account.

Log in to your account and click on Make additional contributions in the navigation toolbar.

2. Contribution splitting

Some of your concessional (before-tax) contributions from the previous financial year can be redirected to your partner’s account. This is known as contributions splitting.

Types of contributions that you can split with your partner include:

  • Employer contributions.
  • Salary sacrificed contributions.
  • Personal contributions claimed as a tax deduction.

You can split up to 85% of your concessional contributions from the previous financial year¹. The minimum split amount is $500. Split contributions do not count towards the recipient partner’s concessional contributions cap.

To get started, complete a Contributions split form (B02), specifying the amount you want to redirect to your partner’s account.

Before paying into your partner’s super, you should consider both of your financial circumstances and the tax implications it could have for either of you.

We’re here to help

Further information is available in our Super for your partner info sheet.  

You can also read about the specific challenges faced by women when it comes to building their super balance, which includes other helpful tips on boosting super. 

And of course, our superannuation specialists and financial advisers are always here to help you.

If you would like to discuss how you and your partner can grow your superannuation together, please call us on 1800 444 396.


  1. Members with a Defined Benefit account can only split voluntary salary sacrifice contributions, or personal contributions claimed as a tax deduction.