Superannuation is often a person’s largest asset, however, it does not actually form part of your estate. As such, even if your Will says where the proceeds from your Super are to go, this direction is not binding.
The Trustee of your Superannuation company will decide where these proceeds are to be paid to by referring to a legal document known as a Binding Death Benefit Nomination (BDBN).
You can appoint one or several people to be the beneficiaries of your BDBN.
A simple call to your Super Fund to request the documents to complete this is essential to ensure that the funds in held in Super are distributed in accordance with your wishes. You can either elect the proceeds be paid to individuals or alternatively, to your estate.
If you don’t have a BDBN, it is in the discretion of your super company who the payments are made to. These are not automatically made to a significant other or children.
The process of waiting for your super company to make a decision can also be lengthy and involves your loved ones having to complete extensive paperwork and quite often, produce evidence that they relied on you to pay for bills and living expenses.