As a public sector body, ESSSuper must comply with the Information Privacy Act 2000 and the Health Records Act 2001. This legislation provides you with greater control over the collection, use, disclosure and storage of personal information that ESSSuper holds about you.
We take our privacy responsibilities very seriously. In carrying out our function as a public sector superannuation administrator we are aware that our members want assurance that their personal information is adequately protected. We are committed to protecting the privacy of all personal information we hold.
ESSSuper collects and holds personal information of current and former members of the schemes it administers. The personal information we hold includes:
- general information such as personal particulars, contact details, tax file number, employment history and information relating to your superannuation benefit;
- health information such as medical and rehabilitation opinions and reports, and medical history;
- financial information such as salary, benefits and contributions history, and detailed financial records, including bank statements, tax details and income tax returns.
When applications are made for death benefits, we may collect personal information about members’ partners, children and other dependants. Additionally, we collect personal information of members’ partners when applications are made for some retirement benefits.
Why do we collect personal information?
ESSSuper collects and uses personal information to enable us to administer the ESSSuper schemes and to comply with our obligations under relevant law.
How do we use personal information?
Personal information may be used to enable us to determine your entitlement to a superannuation benefit or to calculate your benefit entitlement in a superannuation scheme. Health and medical information may be used to determine member medical classifications or to assess an entitlement to a disability or ill-health benefit. Financial information, including banking details, may be collected to enable us to assess members’ eligibility for early release payments or ongoing disability benefits, and to pay benefits.
Which laws authorise or require us to collect personal information?
- Emergency Services Superannuation Act 1986
- Government Superannuation Act 1999 State Superannuation Act 1988
- State Employees Retirement Benefits Act 1979
- Superannuation (Portability) Act 1989
- Transport Superannuation Act 1988
- Parliamentary Salaries and Superannuation Act 1968.
- Anti-Money Laundering and Counter-Terrorism Financing Act 2006
- Income Tax Assessment Acts 1936 and 1997
- Superannuation Contributions Tax (Assessment and Collection) Act 1997
- Superannuation Industry (Supervision) Act 1993
- Social Security (Administration) Act 1999.
In addition, as paying agent of Constitutionally Protected Schemes, ESSSuper is authorised to collect personal information to give effect to this function.
From whom do we collect personal information?
ESSSuper collects personal information about you from you directly if it is reasonable and practical to do so. We may obtain medical reports or other health information about you from medical and rehabilitation practitioners. We may seek employment, salary, and contribution details from employers. Where we suspect that misleading or fraudulent information has been provided about a member we may engage third parties to conduct covert information gathering techniques including surveillance.
To whom may we disclose personal information?
You should be aware that in order to administer your membership, or as required or authorised by law, ESSSuper may disclose your personal information to third parties. The types of organisations to which we usually disclose personal information generally include: your employer, our auditors, insurer, actuaries, medical and rehabilitation practitioners, investigators, printers, mail houses, administration software providers (and website hosts), other superannuation funds, courts, death benefit beneficiaries, a member’s spouse or partner as part of a divorce settlement or separation (where required by law), the Victorian Government and other Government agencies (such as the Australian Taxation Office, Centrelink, and the Victorian Civil and Administrative Tribunal). Otherwise, member information is kept confidential and is only disclosed to members or their authorised representative.
What are the consequences of not providing personal information to us?
The consequences of you not providing your personal information to ESSSuper will vary depending on the circumstances, but may include:
- we may not be able to establish your entitlement to a superannuation benefit;
- we may not be able to accurately calculate your superannuation benefit;
- your entitlement to an ongoing pension may be cancelled;
- you may have to pay more tax than may otherwise apply; and/or we may not be able to contact you.
How can you access your personal information?
You have the right to access and correct personal information. Requests for access to your personal information should be made through the Freedom of Information Act 1982, and should be addressed to:
The Freedom of Information Officer
GPO Box 1974
Melbourne Vic 3001
Queries and Complaints
Any queries relating to privacy should, in the first instance, be referred to the ESSSuper Member Contact Centre. Written queries and complaints should be addressed to the Privacy Officer at the above address.
If you feel that ESSSuper, through its internal complaints procedure, has not adequately dealt with your complaint regarding privacy, you may seek to contact the Victorian Privacy Commissioner. The Privacy Commissioner’s details may be found at www.privacy.vic.gov.au
Health Services Commissioner
If your complaint relates to health information held by ESSSuper and you feel that ESSSuper, through its internal complaints procedures, has not adequately dealt with your complaint, you may seek to contact the Health Services Commissioner. Contact details for the Health Services Commissioner may be found at www.health.vic.gov.au/hsc.