Meg's Musings – February 2024

07 Feb 2024
Meg Heffron

Meg Heffron

Managing Director

It’s too late in the year to wish you a Happy New Year but... welcome to our first Heffron Highlights of 2024.

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As you might have noticed, we’ve used the summer break to make some great progress on one of our projects – we’ve released the first topic in our new online education series, Super Extension. This is definitely Lyn Formica’s passion project and is something she and I will continue to build out over the coming months. It’s the “next step” for those who have completed our Super Foundations course or want to expand their knowledge beyond the overview provided in that course.

The Super Extension course overall is broken into 7 streams or topic areas (Contributions, Benefits, Death, Investments, Fund & Other taxes, In Practice and Super/SMSFs – this last one being for things like trustee rules and other important issues that won’t fit elsewhere!).

The first topic (Contributions) has been released and the next (Benefits) is coming shortly. The idea is that learners can complete just one topic area (at most 6 modules, around 1 hr each) or, once it’s all released, commit to the whole Super Extension course.

We’re conscious that many of our learners will want to go on and become specialists or experts – and so more courses at that level are being added at the same time. As we complete each additional level, we will release them as well (so look out for, say, “Contributions – Specialist” as well in the coming months, even while we’re still working on the other topics in Super Extension).

The key for us is making it easy for our clients to start and finish wherever they want to. We know that not everyone wants to specialize in SMSFs (I can’t understand it myself but each to their own). But people in many different roles want to know more about (say) contributions or what options are available when a client dies. The structure of our new series will make it easy to explore individual topics quite deeply. And who knows? Some may see the light and decide to work more closely with SMSFs. In which case they can easily upgrade to the full Super Extension or Super Specialist courses in time.

But it hasn’t all been about Super Extension.

Lyn and I have both been putting the finishing touches on our sessions for the SMSF Association National Conference (21-23 February). Essentially every day of the conference starts with a Heffron person so I’m afraid you can’t miss us if you’re going. I’ll be joining the Thought Leadership Breakfast (first thing Wednesday) and presenting my usual strategic update (Thursday morning) while Friday will start with a great workshop with Lyn. I’m going to tell myself that the organisers thought listening to us was a great way to start any day, rather than knowing we’re both early risers and wouldn’t mind being on the agenda before 9am.

So 2024 has started with a bang for us and I hope it’s looking good for you too. Like every other I expect this year to be a big one. We should get some certainty on the Division 296 tax (extra tax for people with more than $3m in super) but hopefully also some positive change. Who knows, maybe this will finally be the year the Government follows through on its promise (and the promise of the previous Government) to do something about legacy pensions? We’ve now helped dozens of clients leave their legacy pension in the last few years (relying on some legislative amendments made back in 2022) but I really would like to see that process made easier.

Want to know more about Super Extensions? Click here.

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