Who can access their super early

You need to meet eligibility rules to access your super early.

You normally can’t use your super until you reach your preservation age. Read about preservation age on the Australian Taxation Office (ATO) website.

To get your super released early you must meet 1 of these eligibility requirements:

  • be in severe financial hardship
  • have a terminal illness
  • be a temporary resident
  • have less than $200 in your super fund
  • meet compassionate grounds.

Read the full details about early access to super on the ATO website.

If you’re in severe financial hardship

We consider it financial hardship, if you’re on an income support payment more than 26 weeks in a row. We can confirm this in writing for you. Even if you're eligible, your super fund will decide if they'll release your super early.

You must meet all of the following:

  • be unable to pay for essential family living costs
  • be getting an income support payment, not including Veteran Payment, ABSTUDY, Austudy or Youth Allowance as a full time student
  • have been on this payment for at least 26 weeks in a row.

There are different rules if you’re over preservation age and haven’t retired. You must meet all of the following:

  • still be out of retirement, which might mean you’re looking for work, studying, working full or part time
  • have reached your preservation age plus 39 weeks
  • get an income support payment for at least 39 weeks in total since you reached your preservation age.
Next: How to apply

Who you contact to apply to release your super early, depends on the reason you need it.

Page last updated: 18 November 2020