A women-centred superannuation fund has slashed its fees for members that have become newly unemployed as a result of the coronavirus crisis.
FairVine Super has reduced its fees payable (including administration, investment management and indirect fees) for new and existing eligible members by 50 per cent, down to 0.6 per cent, under its “FairGo” initiative.
For members with a $100,000 balance the cuts would see additional saving of $450 over eight months.
To take up the offer, new and existing members will need to contact the fund about their change in employment. FairVine has promised to then refund 50 per cent of the super fees paid back into their account until they receive a super contribution from an employer or the end of the year, whatever happens sooner.
Sangeeta Venkatesan, executive chair of FairVine Super said she hopes other super funds follow suit to help Australians in financial hardship during the crisis.
“There is a lot of uncertainty right now, particularly when it comes to superannuation. Pair this with an abundance of people losing their jobs, and it’s clear that every extra dollar counts,” Ms Venkatesan said.
“With the federal government now granting early access to super for those affected by COVID-19, we thought it was important to balance this with an initiative enabling people to put money back into their super fund.”
As a super fund designed for women, she added, the measure was necessary given the huge impact COVID-19 has had on the female population.
“We know COVID-19 has had far-reaching consequences on women. They’re on the front line fighting this virus, with two-thirds of the global health workforce being female,” Ms Venkatesan said.
“They also make up the majority of carers, teachers and childcare workers – all of whom have had their livelihoods threatened. Women are also more likely to be casual workers, hence don’t have access to sick leave entitlements and they’re typically the first on the chopping block when job cuts are required.”
She added women will also be expected to take on additional roles for their children staying home from school, in looking after them and undertaking homeschooling.
”Women are feeling an enormous amount of pressure and it’s our hope that this small measure can give them one less thing to worry about,” she said.
“While getting through the next few months is obviously everyone’s first priority, it’s also important to keep one eye [on] the future and ensure we’re not short-changing our super during the crisis.”
The fund has embedded savings tools that encourage members to continue contributing to their super while they’re not working.
Sarah Simpkins is a journalist at Momentum Media, reporting primarily on banking, financial services and wealth.
Prior to joining the team in 2018, Sarah worked in trade media and produced stories for a current affairs program on community radio.
You can contact her on [email protected].