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Superannuation for the Self-Employed

Superannuation can be a complex subject, but everyone agrees that the main aim is to help people save money throughout their working life to help fund their retirement years.

Most Australian workers have an automatic, compulsory scheme in place to ensure they’re building super savings – but not everyone qualifies.

If you’re a sole trader/self-employed, or in a partnership and not paying super for anyone else – superannuation is not compulsory – and while the tax-effective benefits of super savings are available, you need to put in some extra effort to get things rolling.

That’s where our Nationwide Super – Personal product comes in.

You can enjoy the benefits of being a Nationwide Super member, and make regular contributions to your account – but you just need to understand a few important differences.

With a Nationwide Super – Personal account:

  • there will be no compulsory super contributions, known as the Superannuation Guarantee (SG) coming from an employer
  • you must select an investment option when you join (there is no ‘default’ option)
  • different Death and Total & Permanent Disablement (TPD) insurance arrangements apply, including no ‘default’ cover
(Please note this is not an exhaustive list).

Joining is simple!

The application form, Product Disclosure Statement, guides and a range of other important documents are available on the Forms page. Just make sure you complete the Nationwide Super – Personal Application Form attached to the PDS.

Managing your account

Once you’ve joined, you’ll also be able to manage your super account online with MemberAccess. Simply click this MemberAccess link and follow the Register Now instructions.

Investment options

Taking control of your super savings includes making a decision about where your money is invested. At Nationwide Super, you have access to five types of investment options, with a total of 23 different options to choose from. Each option has its own investment objectives, strategies and level of expected risk and return.

You will need to make an investment choice at the time of joining Nationwide Super, and you can switch your options at any time using your MemberAccess account.

Visit our Investments pages for more information to help you determine which option/s may be right for your particular circumstances.


Insurance is not automatic or compulsory for our Personal account members and you will need to apply for insurance cover, which is paid for out of your Nationwide Super account.

Types of cover

The types of cover available are Death and/or Total and Permanent Disablement (TPD) cover; and Income Protection cover.

  • Death cover – pays a lump sum on your death or the diagnosis of a terminal illness.
  • TPD cover – pays a lump sum if you become totally and permanently disabled and are unlikely to ever work again in a job which you are reasonably qualified for by education, training and experience. Maximum limit – $5 million

Death and TPD cover – is available in multiples of $10,000 and is offered on a fixed basis, which means your level of cover remains fixed and your premium changes with your age.

The cost of your insurance cover will depend on the amount of cover you request, your gender, your age and occupation rating.

  • Income Protection cover – provides a replacement income of up to 85% (including 10% contribution to super) of your income if you are unable to work due to illness or injury. Also known as ‘Salary Continuance Insurance’, it provides a monthly benefit for up to 2 years or to age 65, depending on your selection and offers various waiting periods to suit your needs.

The premium cost of Income Protection depends on your age, waiting period and benefit period selected, your gender and occupation rating.

Read our PDS and Guides for more details about the Nationwide Super – Personal product and your options.