Let’s make sure you’re covered, and have your Binding Death Nomination Form in good shape
to make sure it does it’s job.
It can be a not so welcomed scary surprise if the form isn’t filled out right and valid.
To conclude our Halloween special series we’re going to explain to you the details of a Binding Death Nomination Form, and how to make sure it’s valid so you don’t get caught out like unfortunately our friend did here.
Let’s get into the nitty gritty of it.
For your form to be valid, you need to make sure these steps are ticked off.
It’s current and effective.
Some forms have an expiration of 3 years, so make sure that it never reaches this date!
The form needs to be properly signed and witnessed, otherwise it won’t hold up.
You are restricted to the people you can nominate in your binding death nomination form as beneficiaries of your super assets.
Okay, so you can have two different types of death nomination forms. Lapsing and non-lapsing. Now I’m sure you can assume what the difference is here. Traditionally the most common option is the lapsing death benefit which lasts for 3 years. Recently a non-lapsing option has also been made available, however it’s not available for all funds. These will never expire unless they are cancelled or replaced with a new one.
If a these forms expire, or are cancelled without being replaced with a new one, then they are in-valid and the trustee of the fund will again have full control over the assets and death benefit.
There are a few things you need to get right here to make sure your nomination is valid and binding.
- You need to have two independent and adult witnesses (just like a will).
- If you provide any further attachments to the form to nominate more than 4 beneficiaries, then these need to be signed and witnessed as well
- The witnesses cannot be nominated beneficiaries
- The signing date of the witnesses must be the same as the member’s signing date
- Any and all alterations, corrections and typos on the form must be initialled by the member and both witnesses
So, let’s talk more about the beneficiaries. You are restricted to who you can nominate for this. The list includes; your spouse, your children, a person that is financially dependent on you, the executor of your estate, or an interdependent.
So, if you choose to name a dependant as your beneficiary then they can choose to receive the benefit as either a lump sum payment, or as another income stream.
On the other hand, if your beneficiary is a non-dependant then they can only receive it as a lump sum payment.
In the case where you nominate your executor as your beneficiary, then they have to pay out the benefits as laid out in your will.
Looking towards the future
Are you children working? If so then they will automatically be receiving super. It may not be a lot, but many super funds have insurance included as well. If you get it sorted now and choose a non-lapsing form type, then it something you don’t have to worry about until your circumstances change. This may go all the way until they decide to get married or have children or any other major life event. Even though it’s a non-lapsing form, it can still be updated and maintained (which again, is recommended by us). We may not be solicitors, but we definitely know a thing or two about numbers – and your super will often involve a few a them, and we just want to make sure they go to you!
We are not solicitors, and the advice provided above is general in nature and from our own experiences and those of our clients. If you would like further advice tailored to your situation we recommend getting in touch with a solicitor.