The superannuation gap between men and women in Australia is troubling, especially when women’s longer life expectancy is taken into account. The super gap is slowly closing amongst younger generations. However, the superannuation account balances of women over 55 continues to lag behind their male counterparts.
When going through a divorce, superannuation is treated as property. It may be divided up by a court order or negotiated throughout a settlement process. Research indicates that women are far more likely to prefer retaining the family home than to pursue superannuation.
For many women, it may be hard to rebuild super following divorce. This is especially true if they are caring for dependent children.
Women should always carefully consider the long-term consequences of their choices in divorce settlements, and make a reasonable assessment of their ability to increase their superannuation.
At every stage of life, women should consider making additional superannuation contributions whenever possible. Even small sacrifices early on in your career can make a huge difference to the nest egg that you have when you retire.