As of September 14th, 2020, First State Super rebranded to Aware Super. This rebrand also included the amalgamation of StatePlus.
Received a letter saying my account had been CLOSED.
Letter received saying my account has been closed and they would like me back. I have not closed and had consolidated 2 other fund accounts with them at the beginning of the year.
I feel physically ill.
Stolen IP Fees of ~ $3,000, offered $300 in return....still waiting....
Become more complex to monitor
Been in Allocated Pension (Balanced) for many years, paying for financial advice that I didn't really need. Now moved to the Fixed Income Plan product which includes billable financial advice (ie: if no advice, no fee). Returns are lower than Australian Super (7% / 12%), but exposure to risk would be lower. Admin performance lets them down.
I was with this super fund for nearly 30 years and came out of it recently with less than impressive funds. I have since rolled the sum into another fund associated with a new job so hopefully things might build. You expect ups and downs with the markets etc but you rely on the fund manager (with experienced finance people) to make the appropriate investment choices and changes continuously over time for the strategy they have recommended for your age etc. One of the most frustrating and I think wrong actions is when superfunds automatically ta...ke out unwanted insurance premiums. I understand there are compulsory clauses and government legislation re insurance but it is when the information details are hidden in the plans or when starting a new job that you may have the option to opt out. It is often not clear and can be very confusing. And even though I was aware of these issues and looked out for them I still got caught out with all the superfunds I have been with taking out insurance i did not need or require. It then takes letters and phones calls to claim a refund. Opting in to non-compulsory insurance should be the default option, not expecting the client to opt out. First State have been helpful on various occasions when I needed assistance. The member account login service is also quite good.
Superannuation is Confusing
As superannuation is confusing to even the most academic person, the laws do change every financial year. My experience with dealing with First State Super has been really efficient. I found the website and online account option really helpful and user friendly. Each superannuation company will vary from another though. It is worthwhile to take the time to research the site to find the answers you are looking for,
With telephone calls with First State, the staff have always been very kind and professional. And unlike others, they do ask...for feedback on the service provided, which was great. I do agree with some of the comments made here about problems with financial advisors, as it is really difficult to obtain helpful advice on each given situation. Though this may not necessarily reflect on First State Super or any other superannuation company directly. As many of the financial advisors are independent, and are only affiliated with a range of banking or superannuation companies. The Money Smart website is helpful to identify if a financial advisor is accredited, but to date, have not found a site that endorses any particular financial advisor. Superannuation is very complex and becomes personal to every person. Dealing with First State Super, in my own experience has been very helpful. Ultimately though, any financial decision that any one person faces, is their own responsibility. Not even Financial Advisors can be responsible if you make a right or wrong decision, as they all have disclaimers protecting them.
Where are our ANNUAL statements from last financial year???
Still in my email inbox sits the email of 10 September 2018 stating that I should disregard all previous mentions of my 2017-18 annual statement and that it would be ready shortly. Nothing has happened. Every two weeks I ring the 1800 number to a call centre which seems to be fielding queries from all sorts of funds, each time to be told it will be ready shortly. Anyone joining this fund nowadays must be nuts!!! Warn your heirs and successors, fellow retirees. It was good as State Super Financial Services, seems shonkier by the week ever since as we are merged and acquired and are told the new logo/service/location/login/website are all "exciting".
Robbers and misery creaters
I deposited a rather large personal contribution after confirming with FSS that the amount will be allocated to the super account on a particular date. The amount did not arrive on the date they promised and that resulted in a loss of $2300 to us. FSS repeatedly refused to honour their promise that led us to deposit the money in the first place and told us to screw off. We told them we had 25 week old premature twins that need attention after having lost a child before that and no empathy at all. Clear cut intention of rip off and stealing. Fin...ally, when we went to SCT and threatened to go to Royal Commission, they offer to honour their promise. Took 200 hours of our time over 3 months, several sleepless nights, lots of grief and disruption of care to our premature twins before they budged and that too out of fear of Royal Commission. We resolved to check how else they have been ripping their members off and realised that that their service guarantee is to ensure super contributions are deposited into account within 3 business days. They have not been doing that for 6 years with all my employer contributions. When I raised that issue, the customer service promised to respond in a few days and it is over 3 months now and no response. Liars and thieves, worse than criminals. Zoo animals are better than them. You will probably see a better service in Timbuktu than FSS. I suspect what they have done to me is what they have done to many others resulting in members being disadvantaged millions. Would give them a negative hundred stars if possible. Shame I have to choose one star.
- Verified customer
Worst customer service ever, its terrible and nasty real talk
If you like to waste your money and your time this is the answer ( First state super).I have been with them for 3 years now, horrible experience with their service team, sneaky and nasty and refused to pay my money back. Best thing they do is ignoring you enquiries and they are masters in deception. I will get heart attack soon because of them.
Same Experience - impossible to close account
I have exactly the same experience. FSS created a duplicate account in my married name when I got married. They did so without my consent and without any documentation. I have been unable to combine the accounts over 14 years while they have merrily charged me double fees. Every time I have tried there has been a problem. I am currently trying to do it again and transfer the balance elsewhere. They tell me they will not consider the refund of fees if I close the account. I have been trying to do so for over 1 month. Despite giving them m...y details and account numbers 3 times over, they have come back today saying say they can not find the accounts. One presumes they are willfully making it difficult for people to close accounts and transfer balances. The Regulator should do something about it. I also lodged a complaint with the FS Royal Commission, and would encourage other people to lodge formal complaints against this company. Truly dreadful Super.
No Customer Service, Deregistered my account and charging for services im not eligible for.
Ive had FSS for several decades as a legacy of what was forced on me for government work.
Since 2012 I have been in a horrible cycle of enquires attempts with a 2 week turn around to get a standard form letter automatically generated eMail back all of which list all these things available to me if I only ask, and ignoring that yes I have actually asked can you please answer. Lots and lots of long winded information, nothing informative!!!
This has ranged from trying to nominate beneficiaries that they reject. Ive also been trying to fin...d out exactly what the details of my death benefit policy is that I am paying for and why they are accepting premiums for something i'm apparently not entitled to as well as proof of my electing to take this this policy out. Ive asked very direct questions and a statement of account with all fees and policies and entitlements they bluntly refuse to provide. They have also deregistered my online account without any notification but now insist I print and handwrite a form to reinstate my own registered account I never deregistered. Pretty sure removing access to my own account is illegal and YES you read that correctly PRINT, HANDWRITE AND POST!!! - Hello FSS the year is 2018, 1990 wants its archaic manual processes back please. How does that work? I start an online account up by registering online they promptly cancel effectively locking me out of any information for my own fund but to start up the online account again I have to register on paper via snail mail??? Not to mention the ridiculous amount of manual forms I have filled out over the years only for these never ever to of been received or actioned. Perhaps FSS seem to miss the point that the fund is worthless if I don't have confidence I can even get any basic information let alone access the $ when that time comes. Missed the point FSS this is my money - not yours and your charging me onerous fees for a service you are simply not providing.
- Verified customer
First state super have no customer service, they never answer emails in a timely fashion
Hi have a FSS fund due to working as a police officer, I have made a claim for TPD as per the insurance offered via FSS, I have been told even though they took money out of my fund for coverage, that TAL life claim I am not covered by them, and MetLife claim I am not covered by them, the two insurers involved with FSS. FSS claimed they were going to sort it out within 6-8 weeks or the matter goes to tribunal. It has been over three months, the case manager [name removed] doesn't respond to emails, and I haven't heard anything from FSS. So where...did my insurance money go, if these rip off companies claim I am not covered. I have a serious back injury and PTSD, so the delay is not due to medical evidence, they have enough according to FSS. Read the Canstar ratings of super funds prior to getting involved with this company, I would give them zero, but that option wasn't available.
SSFS to Stateplus
I have ben drawing an allocated pension from SSFS/Stateplus since 2007. Since the change I find that the returns are poorer and the fees are fairly high. 1.4% on their balanced fund. Higher returns mask high fees and perhaps justify the fees if the higher returns can be maintained.
Looking at my situation I draw an allocated pension of about $1900/month and on my balance of about $440000 attract fees in the order $6000/ annum or $513/month. Therefore it is costing me $500/month to pay me $1900/month with my own money. Good value for money? I...think not. As I am drawing a part CSS pension I am effected by the Jan 2015 changes on how Super balances are treated for assessment to the aged pension. If you were receiving an allocated pension prior to the 1 Jan 2015 deadline your balance was grandfathered and the previous conditions prevailed for assessment regarding the aged pension. However if you wanted to change your Super fund and changed providers the post Jan 1 2015 regime would apply to your roll over balance regarding the calculation of the part aged pension This has the effect of trapping you in your fund otherwise you will be assessed under the new ruleswhich in my case meant losing most of the part aged pension. This of course is not the fault of Stateplus but I cannot remember my financial adviser warning me of the implications of these changes which should have been part of their duty to put the financial interests of the client first. Clearly this did not happen in this case
- Verified customer
Impossible to roll over out of First State Super, not accepting email and requesting post the docume
I had absolutely horrible and the same experience with other recent reviewers. I was trying to roll over my super fund out of First Super since 2 month ago, but still not able to do so due to my legal name is still not updated with First State Super yet.
At first, I was told to email all my scanned and certified ID + Request Form for name change which I did. But then that was it, no feedback or follow up, only auto response email saying they have received it.
Then, I called them to chase up the process. I was told all ID documents need to b...
Lack of Customer Service Very frustrating company!
They had my other beneficiary name incorrectly spelt on my profile. When I inquired about it the lady whom I spoke with she insisted that's how i wrote it on my form. I told her I have checked that and that beneficiary is my daughter how in the world I will spell her name incorrectly because I named her. So she asked me to mail another form which i did immediately and mailed to them it has been 4 mos now since I mailed my form to them but they haven't updated it!!!! What a shame!!! its only a name change which can be done as easy as 123 but they are so incompetent about it so how we gonna trust them of our hard earned super if that single thing they cannot do it properly!
State Plus, a private fund
We were led to believe that this fund was an Industry Fund, which it is not. I have been on an allocated pension for almost 8 years and only recently found out that my free annual meetings were costing me in the vicinity off 5k a year on top of poor returns and high fees. The staff have always been very polite and appear to be helpful,that is until you decide to transfer your funds to a better performing fund. The final straw came when I received a letter in the mail advising me that almost 5k had been refunded to me as I didn't have my annual ...meeting in 2015, it is now 2018. This is at a time when the Royal Commission into Banking is happening! State Plus have had notification of my instructions to transfer funds for 3 weeks despite the fact that legally they are required to transfer funds within 24-48 hours. I have been told on several occasions that everything is in order and the transfer will take place. Now there is a freeze on all processing. The sooner This is settled the better.
- Verified customer
Transfer/roll over out of First State
Difficult to transfer funds out of first state super.
Been an ongoing issue for the last 6 months as there is always some glitch..
Has costed me so far around about $4000 from fees that first state is charging from still having an account with them.
Don't bother sending a response to this first state super offering to help.... This review is in response to your lack of assistance via the various phone and email correspondences ..
Back office fails
We have had a string of problems all related to the back office. Alas it seems that the Canberra Office has little connection with its customers. This is most recently highlighted by the move to the Nishi Building. Who in their right mind would move a business that is suposed to be focuessed around client needs to a location where the parking is limited? The web site suggests 1.3km from bus interchange. Have the forgotten the large number of retired clients? Time to move on.
Very difficult to leave
I am in the process of combining all of my super accounts into a single account. I have had 4 different super providers from different jobs over my working life. All of the other providers it was incredibly easy to transfer into my new account, no fees and done instantly.
First State charge $36 and also force you to provide 100 points of certified identification - Eg copy of passport etc signed by a JP.
I think its terrible service. I didn't need to provide this certified identification to open the account and they are also going to charge me to transfer my own money, despite all of the fees they have already taken. Other Super Annuation companies make it so easy to transfer, I feel like First State intentionally make it hard.
Questions & Answers
I have a conservative growth strategy. Why have I lost over $7,000 in 15 days from my super?
The stock market does not reflect these losses and things are improving after COVID, yet I am losing money by the thousands.
Why are your investment strategies so poor? Or please advise why ‘conservative growth’ fund members are losing so much money?
I do not wish to change this investment option as it is meant to be safest and low risk so why the poor performance?
Not at all happy!
Aware SuperAware Super
Thank you for your question.
Fluctuating returns are a normal part of the investment cycle. We have an investments team who are actively managing the allocation of risk in the fund to manage market volatility. At Aware Super, we remain focused on the long-term performance of your portfolio. There are three main ways we manage exposure to markets over time. These are diversification, active asset allocation and managing foreign currency exposure.
You can read more about our approach to investments on our website here: www.aware.com.au/member/investments-and-performance/how-we-manage-your-investment/investment-approach
If you have any other questions or would like to discuss your investment option with us further, we would love to hear from you. Please call us on 1300 650 873 or send us an email to firstname.lastname@example.org
How to get payment code?
Aware SuperAware Super
Thanks for your message.
If you require any information that relates to your Aware Super account, please feel free to contact our Service Centre on 1300 650 873 or email email@example.com for more assistance.
We're here to help.
What is the interest paid frequency - annually, monthly, quartetly?
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