When Can I Access My Superannuation?
The age at which you can access your superannuation is determined by several principles.
These include your “preservation age” and meeting a “condition release”. You are restricted from accessing your super until you reach a certain age and retire, or until you meet another condition of release, such as changing employers under certain circumstances.
Once you reach age 65, these requirements no longer apply, and you can access your super even if you continue to work. Prior to that the simplest way to access your super is to reach your preservation age and start claiming it when you retire. Note that the specific age and retirement requirements both must be met.
Your preservation age is based on your date of birth, and ranges from 55 to 60 years, as follows:
In special circumstances, you can access super benefits without retiring, or without reaching your preservation age.
However, those circumstances are very specific, for example, severe financial hardship and permanent incapacity.
If you are aged between 60 and 64, and you would like to access your super, you would need to resign from a current employer, but you can return to work at any time. If you are aged between your “preservation age” and 59, and you would like to access some of your super while continuing to work, the main strategy is to start a special type of pension known as a “transition to retirement pension”, although these are not as effective as they once were.