There is now an enormous amount of superannuation invested in the Australian Domestic Economy. There is over $2 trillion dollars in superannuation funds invested in Australia. This means that there is now a large amount of disputation in relation to certain accounts and a large demand for industry oversight. An ombudsman is a government departments that normally fulfills and investigative role and the role of being a resolver of disputes in a particular industry. There is not a superannuation ombudsman in Australia as such although there is the Superannuation Tribunal. This tribunal offers a free alternative to the court system and can hear disputes in relation to the trustees of regulated super funds, the providers of annuity policies, the providers of Retirement Savings Accounts.
The complaints which the tribunal hears are generally divided into a few different categories. The first is errors in annual statements which can include a wrongfully paid death benefit, an unreasonable delay in a payment, a miscalculation of a benefit, payment, or commutation or other similar errors. The next major category of complaints is general complaints which are only heard after you have received a response that you found unsatisfactory or have had no response after 90 days. These can relate to performance, fees, employer contribution, life insurance, financial advisers
If you think that your superannuation trustee has done something which is wrong or you are unhappy with the performance of the fund in anyway, you may need to speak to a superannuation lawyer to ensure that your rights are fully protected and that your do not forgo any opportunity to claim against the trustee in relation to their conduct of the fund. There are time limits which can apply to claiming in relation to matters like this and it is necessary to act quickly to ensure that your rights are protected adequately.