Australia: ATO urged to let expectant dad access his super to buy vehicle for growing family - PressFrom - Australia
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AustraliaATO urged to let expectant dad access his super to buy vehicle for growing family

08:05  15 april  2019
08:05  15 april  2019 Source:   abc.net.au

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"For fathers soon expecting the ultimate gift—a new member of the family —The Expectant Father is his best friend."— CNN Interactive. He also hosts “Positive Parenting,” a nationally syndicated, weekly talk show and lives with his family in Oakland, California.

ATO urged to let expectant dad access his super to buy vehicle for growing family© Supplied/Geoff Kilsby Geoff Kilsby wants access to his superannuation to assist his family. A Brisbane man is urging the Australian Taxation Office (ATO) to grant him early access to his superannuation on compassionate grounds to buy a car to transport his growing family.

Geoff Kilsby and his wife Emma are parents of young triplets and a 13-year-old and are expecting twins later this year.

They currently own a five-seater car and say they need a larger vehicle to allow Ms Kilsby to leave the house when Geoff goes to work.

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"We need just under $60,000 from our super," Mr Kilsby told ABC Radio Brisbane's Rebecca Levingston.

"Due to our situation, the banks won't give us a car loan and our family isn't in the position to assist us either."

The full-time nursing teacher applied to the tax office under medical grounds in relation to mental health and a cardiac condition his wife is experiencing during pregnancy.

Three specialist reports and two GP reports were sent to the ATO with the application, he said.

"The doctors believe the mental health reasoning is concerning and life threatening, because if people are trapped in their house, then their mental health deteriorates to the point of post-natal depression and currently Emma has perinatal depression," Mr Kilsby said.

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The ATO is the Government’s principal revenue collection agency. This report captures data we collect to administer the tax and super system for individuals, companies, super funds, partnerships, and trusts.

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'One of those it-happened situations'

Mr Kilsby said the pregnancy was not planned, as both he and his wife were using contraception.

"The contraception was ineffective; I had a vasectomy and other forms of contraception from Emma failed and it was just one of those it-happened situations.

"We know of at least half a dozen cases that have been successful at accessing super for a larger vehicle with similar circumstances."

But the family received verbal notifications that their claim had been rejected due to Ms Kilsby's condition not being life-threatening.

"Medical practitioners have signed off on the reports stating that it is life-threatening due to mental health reasons," Mr Kilsby said.

"It could go to the worst of situations where possible suicide occurs and that's really not good."

Numerous requests to tax office

Mr Kilsby said his family was only "just coping" after replying to all of the ATO's requests.

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You can grow your super by making your own contributions, making salary sacrifice arrangements or receiving government contributions. There are a number of ways you can grow your super to make a positive difference to your lifestyle in retirement. If you are, or have been employed, you should

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"Every time the ATO rejected the claim and wanted more information, we gave them more information and then we put in a formal complaint to the ATO," he said.

"They have done their investigation and internal review on that and I'm still waiting for the official paperwork to show it's been rejected again — I don't know why the ATO have taken this stance and I would love to know why."

If granted access to his super, Mr Kilsby said he would still have enough money for retirement.

"The figures are done and we definitely have enough to retire on when I choose to retire."

Callers to ABC Radio Brisbane had similar stories on how they too tried to access their super:

"I contacted my super fund for my husband's funeral and I was happy to show them my bank account details, as I had many health bills that I had paid. They still said no because they needed more proof that I needed the money." — Tracey from Ipswich

"My wife and I were diagnosed with cancer within four months of each other, and we had private health [cover], but even with that we used all our savings and we needed more money to pay the bills. They kept saying no, but I think I wore them down. It was a very difficult process." — Edward from Bridgeman Downs

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"When my marriage broke down my husband refused to contribute to house payments and I had to leave work to have a baby, so I had no income. I accessed $20,000 which was all my super and I used that to make the house payments. It was about the wording that you used on the forms." — Susan from Keperra

"In my day, as a provider to the family, I got a second or third job." — Bob from Chermside

Mr Kilsby said he had contacted his local MP who is set to write a letter to the Minister and shadow minister seeking assistance.

The ABC has approached the ATO for comment.

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