Unpaid super claims

What is unpaid superannuation? 

Unpaid superannuation is essentially money you earned working for someone else, but didn’t receive. You see, whether you work full time, part time or casually and earn more than $450 (before tax) per month, Australian law requires your employer to pay a percentage of your income into a super fund at least every three months. The current minimum percentage (also known as the super guarantee) is 9.5%.

This growing balance in your superannuation fund is building your retirement savings. So, if your employer doesn’t pay your super, you could miss out on thousands or even hundreds of thousands of dollars in the future.

If you suspect your employer isn’t paying your super properly, you need to set things right. The Australian Taxation Office (ATO) can investigate and recover your unpaid super, along with any interest and penalties.

Maurice Blackburn also employs local experts in superannuation insurance claims who can help guide you through the tricky process of recovering your unpaid super.

How to claim unpaid super  

Claiming unpaid super can be stressful, so before you reach out to the ATO about potential unpaid super, follow this step by step process to check the state of your super contributions:

  1. Check if you’re eligible for super
    You’re entitled to receive super from your employer if you:
    • Are over 18 years old
    • Earn more than $450 (before tax) per month
  2. Compare your super member statement with your payslips
    Your recent super member statement should show regular amounts deposited into your account. These amounts should match the amounts listed on your payslips or yearly payment summaries.

    If you don’t remember the name of your super fund ask your employer. You can also nominate your own super fund if you prefer.

  3. Reach out to your employer
    If you notice a discrepancy between your super and income statements bring it to your employer’s attention. It might be a simple mistake or administration delay.  Request that they take steps to restore any missing funds from your super account.

If you’ve followed the steps above and your employer still won’t pay or any of the super you’re entitled to, it’s time to notify the ATO on 131 020.

If any part of this process makes you feel overwhelmed and you want a trusted expert in your corner, get in touch with our unpaid superannuation lawyers. We are here and ready to help you claim your unpaid super.

Unpaid superannuation time limits 

You should take action to recover your unpaid super quickly. This is because by law, employers only have to keep employee records for five years. So, if your unpaid super claim falls in a financial year that ended five years ago, the ATO might not be able to access your employee records and therefore might not pursue your claim.

So, as soon as you suspect your employer isn’t paying enough or any super into your account, gather your income and super statements and contact the ATO or your local Maurice Blackburn team right away.

Loss of insurance claims through your super fund 

If you suffer injury or illness that impacts your work, you may also be able to claim compensation for the disability insurance benefits that you lost or never received because your employer didn’t contribute to your super.

Lost insurance compensation claims may depend on whether you are entitled to be paid superannuation through individual contracts you have with other people or companies.

We understand that the intricacies of an unpaid superannuation claim can be confusing and daunting. Your local Maurice Blackburn team are experts in all aspects of superannuation and insurance. We are here to listen to your story and offer you straightforward, tailored advice to ensure you receive the entitlements and benefits that you’ve worked so hard for.

Why Maurice Blackburn?

Maurice Blackburn's superannuation claims lawyers are experts. Our firm has 100 years of experience providing Australians with accurate and quality legal advice.

Your Maurice Blackburn superannuation lawyer will help you navigate every aspect of your unpaid super claim, including:

  • Giving tailored advice on whether you have a valid claim before you contact the ATO
  • Manage all correspondence between your employer, the ATO, your super fund and any other relevant people or companies
  • Ensuring you receive every last dollar and benefit you are entitled to as a hard-working employee

We even offer 'no win, no fee'* arrangements for unpaid super claims. This means that you don’t have to pay for our legal services if we don't win your case. We have superannuation and insurance claims lawyers in Melbourne, Sydney, Brisbane, Perth, Adelaide, Darwin and throughout regional Australia.

And remember, time limits apply on collecting your unpaid super, so contact us today to receive a free superannuation and insurance check and find out how we can help.

All you need to know about superannuation insurance

Most superannuation policies have insurance elements which are there to protect you if you can't work for any medical reason. We’ll explain who can make a claim and how the legal process works.

Frequently Asked Questions

When should I claim unpaid superannuation? Is there a time limit?

It’s best to claim your unpaid super as early as possible but not later than five years from when it was due. This is because if your unpaid super claim falls in a financial year that ended five or more years ago, your employer may no longer have your employee records on file (because by law, they only have to keep them for five years). This means that the ATO might not be able to access your record and therefore refuse to pursue your claim.

What are my entitlements from unpaid super?

The current minimum super guarantee is 9.5%. To calculate your super entitlements, multiply your gross (before tax) salary by 9.5% (or 0.095).

Who can claim unpaid super?

You can claim unpaid super if you are:

  • 18 years old or over
  • employed work full time, part time or casually
  • You earn more than $450 (before tax) per month


How can I get unpaid super from my employer?

The ATO can help you recover your unpaid super.  Your local Maurice Blackburn team can also help you through every step of the process.

How can a lawyer help me claim unpaid super?

Your unpaid superannuation lawyers can help you in four key ways, including:

  • Offering you advice about your rights, free of charge
  • Advising you on whether or not your claim will be valid or accepted
  • Taking charge of any necessary correspondence with your employer, the ATO and your super fund
  • Making sure you receive every last superannuation benefit you earned while you were working

No win, no fee*

Our superannuation claim lawyers are experienced in winning fair compensation for our clients on a no win, no fee basis.

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