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If you or your ex-partner have a QSuper account with us instead, please use the QSuper forms and instructions instead.

What happens to super when you divorce or separate?

When you're dividing up property and finances during divorce or separation, it's worth thinking about superannuation. Super is classed as a type of property under Australian family law, but the process to split it is different to other types of property.

Superannuation splitting for divorce or separation is different to contribution splitting with your partner.

You don't always need to split your super, but if you choose to, you'll need either a binding financial agreement (BFA), court orders or consent orders from the Court.

This involves the Federal Circuit and Family Court of Australia – unless you're separating through the Family Court of Western Australia. When we say "the court", we mean the court you're dealing with.

Do you have to split superannuation in a divorce?

Super is a type of property in separation or divorce, and you can choose whether or not to split super. Superannuation is often the largest amount of money Australians have, so when you're splitting your finances, super can be a big part of it.

Your lawyer can give you advice about whether you should split your super or not.

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Getting legal advice and financial advice

A lawyer can explain your rights, how the law applies to you, and the pros and cons of different options. Check the government's Moneysmart website for information about free legal advice services that could help, and their divorce and separation financial checklist.

You can also get financial advice. Advice about your account with us is included in your membership, or we can help you find a financial adviser to look at your whole financial situation.

Advice options

How to transfer superannuation to a spouse for divorce

There are a few steps for how to split superannuation in a divorce if you or your ex-partner have a Super Savings account with Australian Retirement Trust.

First, you may need to find out how much super you and your ex-partner have. You can do this by filling in a Form 6 Declaration, which is in the Superannuation Information Kit from the Federal Circuit and Family Court of Australia, or the forms from the Family Court of Western Australia. For the Federal Form 6 Declaration, we only need you to fill in pages 4 and 5. Make sure whoever fills in the form signs and dates both pages.

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You can email or post the form to the address below.

We'll send you the valuation of the super account. We don't charge a fee for this service.

There are 2 types of documents you can use to split your super or your ex-partner's super:

  • Binding financial agreement:

    A lawyer must draw this up, and you and your ex both need to get independent legal advice.

  • Consent order or court order:

    You or your lawyer can draft a consent order or apply for a court order from the court.

If you and your ex-partner have reached an agreement without a lawyer, you can use the Federal Circuit and Family Court of Australia's DIY kit: Application for Consent Orders. (Or the consent forms in WA.)

For a consent order or court order, we need to see the draft orders at least 28 days before you send them to the court. This is a legal requirement, so that we can let you know if the document has everything we need to split your super.

If you are using a binding financial agreement, we encourage you to send a draft version to us so we can make sure there are no errors before you finalise it. This is optional, not legally required.

For both types of documents, please also fill in our Non-Member Spouse Information form with your and your ex-partner's information.

Need help preparing your documents? See our factsheets below below for Super Savings accounts:

Superannuation Splitting by Court Orders

Superannuation Splitting by Binding Financial Agreement

Now it's time to send us all the documents to request a super split:

For a binding financial agreement: Send us these 3 things:

A certified copy of your binding financial agreement

Either a separation declaration (signed and dated within 28 days of when we receive it) or a copy of the divorce order

Our Non-Member Spouse Information form with your and your ex-partner's information filled in

For court orders:

A copy of the sealed court orders (your orders may say that this needs to be a certified copy)

Our Non-Member Spouse Information form with your and your ex-partner's information filled in

Where to send your documents:

If you're dealing with a QSuper account, use the QSuper contact details instead.


If you email the documents to us, please send a clear, scanned copy, because we can't always accept photographs.


GPO Box 2924
Brisbane QLD 4001

In person

Brisbane Member Centre

Ground Floor, 266 George Street

Brisbane QLD 4000

Need help? Call us

If you're receiving super from an ex-partner who has an account within Australian Retirement Trust, we create an Australian Retirement Trust account for you to put this money in. From there, you can decide what your next steps are.

If you're already a member, we'll put the money in your existing account.

Not already a member with us? We'll open a new account for you, and you can decide whether you want to stay with us or transfer it to another super fund.

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How long will it take?

The whole process takes roughly 4 weeks, and it can take up to 2–3 weeks for the money to appear in your Australian Retirement Trust account.

We make the payment based on unit prices and investment returns from the "operative date" in the documents we receive.

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Your next steps

After such a big life change, there are other things you might need to update. You might need to let us know your new address, or change who would inherit your super if you die (your beneficiaries). You can usually do this online, but please call us if you need any help.

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Update your details

Log in to change your name or contact information.

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Change beneficiaries

Tell us who should get your super when you die.

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Update insurance

Check your insurance is still right for your situation.

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Account privacy

Check or change who has authority to access your account.

FAQs about superannuation and divorce

If you have any questions about the process, please give us a call. Our friendly team are here to help.

13 11 84

8:00am-7:30pm AEST Monday to Friday

When overseas +61 7 3333 7400

We don't charge any additional fees for superannuation splitting:

  • No valuation fees
  • No splitting fees
  • No flagging fees
  • No fees for interest covered by an agreement or orders, including actuarial fees

If someone subpoenas us, we don't charge them a fee, but do accept conduct money to cover the cost of providing that information. You can ask your lawyer about this.

If you receive money from an ex-spouse in a super split, some administration fees apply to the ART account that we put this money in for you (see step 4 above). You can check out our fees online or in the product disclosure statement (PDS).

Different timeframes apply depending on the circumstances. You should talk to your lawyer about your circumstances and which timeframes apply to your case.

Not necessarily. Superannuation is one part of your financial assets, and your lawyer will be able to tell you how it could work in your case.

A 'post-separation contribution' means something you add to the property, debts, superannuation, or childcare from the time you separate to the time you split your finances. Post-separation super contributions are not automatically excluded when we make a super split – they still count as super in your account.

Getting a super valuation is a bit different for this account type, but you can still request the valuation using a Form 6. You'll also need the same documents as a split for an Accumulation account or Income account.

How we process the account split may also be different, depending on the design of the Defined Benefit account.

If you or your ex-partner has a QSuper Defined Benefit account, please see the QSuper instructions instead.

If your ex-spouse or ex-partner is with a self-managed super fund (SMSF), the steps to split their super may be more complicated. So it's best to get legal advice.

Consent orders are court orders that you and your ex-partner make and agree to, and you must file them with the court.

Your lawyer can help you put these together, or you can do it yourself.

Court orders are orders that a registrar, judge, or magistrate makes on your behalf. You can go to court with a lawyer or on your own.

A binding financial agreement (BFA) is a legal document you and your ex-partner make and agree to. Both you and your ex-partner need a lawyer for this type of document.

There are laws about when you can withdraw super. Your super normally has to stay in your account until you retire, unless you're allowed to get early access.

If you just want to transfer your super to a different super fund, though, you can do that. Please note the family law split can take 2–3 weeks to process before you can transfer your super.

Your super balance regularly goes up and down depending on your investment returns. So between the time you get your orders or agreement and the time the super fund makes the split, your balance may have changed based on investment returns.

A flagging order generally means a super fund can't make payments to a member from an account until they receive documents lifting the flag. However, some types of accounts and some types of payments cannot be flagged under family law and the superannuation laws.

Flagging orders or agreements may also require the super fund to notify the court if a benefit becomes payable.