Find lost superannuation money that is yours and fatten your retirement

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YOU could be missing out on billions of dollars by failing to claw back lost retirement savings.

Latest figures show there is more than $13.5 billion of lost superannuation resting in millions of accounts across the country just waiting to be claimed.

While most people focus on their tax at this time of the year, super experts are urging Australians to take a few minutes to review their super and claw back their retirement savings.

One of the nations largest funds AustralianSuper, which recently reunited $41,000 with a member whose account was lost, says it has contacted more than 124,000 members in an attempt to hand back missing money.

Superannuation is considered lost if no payments are added to the fund for 12 months and the fund does not have a current address or contact details for the account holder.

If this happens, the balance is transferred to the Australian Taxation Office until its claimed by its rightful owner.

The Australian Institute of Superannuation Trustee chief executive officer Tom Garcia says, at this time of year super, as well as tax, should be at the forefront of peoples minds.

You should go and actively look and see if there is super out there that is yours and try and consolidate your accounts,’ he says.

The sizes could vary between a couple of hundred dollars to hundreds of thousands of dollars.

Money that you might not even realise is in a fund may be sitting with the government, thats why you should check it annually.

The 2016 Westpac Lost Super report found most of the population wish they cared about their super more and 73 per cent say they wish they had looked after it better when they were younger.

It also showed, for someone aged between 19 and 24, every $1 they recover in lost super today equates to $10 in retirement.

AustralianSupers group executive of membership Paul Schroder says take notice of your retirement savings and get your hands on any money that is yours.

Its your money, why would you give it to somebody else?’ he says.

Most people need more money and most people will need more money in retirement. An easy way to get more money in retirement is to find some youve already put away and lost.

The fund says more than $22 million in member account balances has been handed back in the past three years but there is plenty more to hand back yet.

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HOW TO CLAIM LOST SUPER

1. Contact your super fund and ask for help to find lost accounts.

2. Login to MyGov to view lost super. Click on the ATO icon. Go to the Super tab, click on super accounts and see if you need to consolidate.

3. Visit Superseeker online and enter your tax file number, name and date of birth.

4. Phone the ATO on 13 10 20 between 8am and 6pm, Monday to Friday.