Defined Benefit Surplus Repatriation

In December 2022 we advised you that in accordance with the provisions of the Fund’s Trust Deed, the Principal Employer (Airservices Australia) had requested the Trustee pay the Principal Employer any excess surplus amount above a level of 120% of Defined Benefit (DB) liabilities.

Consistent with the requirements of the Trust Deed and superannuation legislation, the Trustee commissioned an actuarial review of the Fund and received an actuarial certificate from the Fund Actuary based on the 30 June 2022 financial position. The certificate was attached to our correspondence and confirmed that the Fund would remain in a satisfactory financial position if the excess surplus amount was to be paid to the Principal Employer based upon the 30 June 2022 position.

You can find a copy of the notice and the certificate at this link

Based on this actuarial review the Trustee was satisfied that the payment of the excess surplus assets would have no significant adverse effect on your benefit entitlements or the financial position of the DB division or the Fund. The Trustee therefore resolved that it intended to pay no more than $111,090,345 from the Fund to the Principal Employer, at least three months after the delivery of the notice, which meant a payment date after 12 March 2023.

Importantly, the amount of the payment would be subject to a second actuarial investigation prior to the payment date, to ensure the Fund remained in a satisfactory position following the payment of the excess surplus amount. This second review would capture updated information in the nine months since the balance date and the potential for changes such as investment markets and the composition of the DB division at that point.

Results of the second Actuarial Review

The second review was completed in March 2023. The Actuary determined that the “excess surplus assets” amount available for repatriation is $77,506,352 at a balance date of 15 March 2023.

Investment returns for the DB division were positive for the year to date, however the surplus amount was lower than the initial estimate. The difference between the surplus calculated in the first actuarial review and the final amount was due to the inclusion of benefits of a group of members who ceased employment with Airservices just prior to 30 June 2022, under the Airservices Retirement Incentive Scheme, but had not yet crystallised their benefit. This group of members was not captured in the Actuary’s original calculation.

Under the Trust Deed, the excess surplus can only be paid to the Principal Employer (and must be paid to the Principal Employer if certain conditions are met). The Trustee was satisfied with the level of due diligence performed around this process and is confident members’ financial interests remain unaffected.

Payment of the excess surplus assets

After assessing the second actuarial review the Trustee remains satisfied that the payment of the excess surplus assets will have no significant adverse effect on your benefit entitlements or the financial position of the DB division or the Fund. It has therefore approved the payment in accordance with its obligations under the Trust Deed and the Superannuation Industry (Supervisory) Act. The payment of $77,506,352 has subsequently been made to Airservices on 31 March 2023.

There is no change to the ongoing activities of the Fund, and Airservices Australia and CASA will continue to make contributions in future.

Contact Us

If you have any questions in respect of this update or superannuation matters in general, please do not hesitate to reach out to us by email or phone us on 1300 128 751.